HoD: Mantle of Darkness

18 years after the Battle of Yavin...
A divergent, persistent and interactive Star Wars timeline with a rich history and established characters.

Moderators: VagueDurin, Nichalus

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

OOC: Here is the previous thread, Harbinger of Death.

IC: The Vindication battle ferociously with the enemy ship as the turbo lasers fired none stop. "Make sure all the fighters keep a defense parameter around the ship. Don't attack the Cult of Shadow ship until we get into position. Keep those fighters away from the ship" Grazier sat in his command chair as he waited for the report from the communication officer.

"Aye, aye Captain."

"Captain, no luck, that ship is blocking all communications, so we can't coordinate an effective attack against that ship." The first officer said.

"We have to try something." The ship shook as it was hit from the Edict of Darkness. "Damnit!" Grazier cursed as he stabilized himself in his chair. "I hope you can stop Sivter in time before we all bite it, Don." Captain Grazier muttered to himself.

User avatar
Pryde
Pryngles
Posts: 16863
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 2:11 am
Location: Earth

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Pryde »

Faye frowned as she examined the courtyard before them. Her first inclination would have been to call in a fighter strike and have them clear the courtyard, but the enemy droid fighters and Schrai warriors were keeping their birds out of the air. The only other option they had available to them was stealth. A head on assault would be suicide considering their numbers and the size of the enemy so somehow they would need to cross the courtyard undetected. "If we can work our way around the courtyard over there we may be able to make it to the temple without being noticed," she said, pointing to some structures to the left of the temple. "It's not going to be easy, though, and we'll have to--,"

"Piece of cake," Isis suddenly chimed in, causing Faye to nearly jump out of her skin. The Jedi master was not expecting the bounty hunter to suddenly appear like that, she didn't even hear her approach and to make matters even worse there was no end to the satisfaction her reaction gave Isis. She enjoyed sneaking up on her and Faye knew it. "We sneak around this lot, get inside the temple and find my sister. Can you tell if she's in there," she asked, looking at Faye directly.

Sadly, the Jedi shook her head. "I can't tell if she is or not."

"Fat lot of good that Force sense does you if you can't tell if one little girl is in there or not. I thought you Jedi were supposed to be all knowing."

"I'm afraid that's a bit exagerated," Faye replied, "If your sister is alive then she's unconscious, which will make it practically impossible for me to sense where she is."

"Well that's comforting," Isis grumbled, "If she's unconscious then there'd be no point in torturing her. Maybe we'll get lucky and find her before she wakes up."

"One can only hope," Faye said then she looked at John, "We'll be ready to move on your mark."

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

“Commander, if I may make a suggestion.” The Hopolyte’s sniper spoke up. The average person would have thought the dialect of the snipers voice was from a colonial planet, but there was an undertone at the back of the soldiers throat when the Hopolyte pronounced his words that implied to John that the Hopolyte was once a Mandalorian turned Brotherhood. John could narrow down the dialect to two possible systems, either Concord Dawn or Mandalor, but John was betting on Concord Dawn.

“Go ahead, soldier.”

“The others and I know we’ll be no good once we're in the temple. It’ll be mostly up close lightsaber fighting, and me, I’m a sniper. I kill people from miles away, not up close.” John shrugged at what the Hopolyte was saying. “We can stay and create a diversion on the other side of the courtyard, while you and those bounty hunter chicks sneak in from the side. Don’t worry about us; we know how to make our presence bigger then what it really is. We'll make them think it is main attack on the temple.”

“You know the risks and you know there will be no reinforcement.”

“I’m fully aware commander but it is what the Brotherhood asks of us and we are willing to give our lives to stop monsters like Sivter, but you shouldn’t worry, those tin-cans aren’t much but cannon fodder for my men.” John had to guess the Hopolyte was smiling behind his helmet.

“Alright.” John approved the commander choice to stay behind but even if John had said no, the Hopolytes would have done it anyways regardless of his decision. Hopolyte commandos were stubborn that way. John turned back to Faye, the woman had a mixed look but John sensed that she understood the Hopolyte’s reasoning. “Faye, this leaves us Two Acolytes, and their Apprentices, three Jedi Knights, one Padawan, and Clara and Isis. Not what I was expecting when we started this mission, but I guess it will have to do.” John wiped some sweat and grime off his forehead; his side ached where he had been shot back on Yavin four, but he was holding up pretty well.


A few moments went by as the four Hopolyte commandos got into position on the front side directly across from the temple. The commandos made it with ease as none of the droids detected their movements. After they got into position they signaled Faye and John’s group with a laser pointer giving them the go ahead to head for the temple.

The Hopolyte sniper leveled his sight on a droid commander standing in the middle of the courtyard. There was a slight breeze coming from the Northwest, so the sniper adjusted accordingly.

Forty-five meters north…

Adjust two degrees…

Wind speed thirty-four kilometers from North to South…

Adjust one degree...

Target in sight…

Fire!


The green bolt sliced through the open air ionizing the air in its wake, the laser bolt found its mark in the right temple as it shattering the head on contact.

The other droids made a menacing mechanical sound in response as their computer brains already calculated the direction and distance from where the shot was fired. In response, the droids lit up the far side of the courtyard where the Hopolytes where positioned with laser fire and small anti-personnel rockets.

“This is Hotel one, engage all droids.”

“Copy that Hotel one, we are engaged, Hotel Charlie out.”

User avatar
Pryde
Pryngles
Posts: 16863
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 2:11 am
Location: Earth

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Pryde »

As John and the others pulled back from the Courtyard to meet up with the rest of their unit Isis grabbed the Brotherhood Acolyte by the arm. "Are you seriously just going to leave them here to die," she demanded of him.

"It is their choice," he answered.

"Well it's stupid. What good are they going to be to us if they're all dead? Dead men aren't going to raise up arms against the enemy or stop a universal disaster from happening. If the Cult makes it out of here with the Necromonus and none of us are alive tomorrow then what will we have accomplished save the utter annihilation of the entire galaxy?"

John's expression hardened. "There are others who would gladly take up arms to battle the Cult if we should fall."

"Oh I see, so it's okay for us to throw our lives away today because someone else is going to clean up our mess tomorrow, right?" Isis replied and when John didn't seem to have an answer she continued. "That's what I don't get about you sacrificial Jedi-types. No cost is too high for you, is it? Well, wake up damn it! If you guys really want to stick it to the Sith then pull your heads out of your asses and stop being so eager to die! Living through this war is the only thing that's going to make sure Sivter doesn't win."

Then she spun on her heel and stormed away not even bothering to wait for a retort. She was tired of Jedi being so willing to sacrifice anything, friend and foe alike, if it meant protecting the galaxy. Even her sister fell prey to that plague and sacrificed herself to the Cult and all for what? It didn't change the fact that they were all still in grave danger and ultimately she only managed to distract Crix for a few minutes. He must have rejoined the battle by now and was causing havoc elsewhere so really what did she accomplish if anything at all?

When I find you I'm going to ring your neck, she grumbled as she stormed past Faye and Clara towards the front. Faye couldn't help but give Clara a side-long glance.

"Your friend is a rather--complicated person," she noted.

Clara just grunted in response and they walked the rest of the way in silence. When they were in position they waited for the Hopolyte sniper team to make the first move before making a mad dash for the temple. The commandos had the droid army thoroughly distracted long enough for Faye and the others to climb the stairs of the temple to the entrance. When they arrived Isis primed a thermal detonator and tossed it at the two AE droids guarding the entrance. The blast consumed one but only damaged the other. Faye and John were easily able to finish it off with a bit of teamwork then they slipped inside with the rest of their group following behind.

"Okay, so we're inside. Now where do we go," Isis asked, glancing at Faye and John.

User avatar
TalRaimi
'Will finish a thread one day…'
Posts: 1202
Joined: Sun Feb 16, 2003 1:35 am
Location: The Uncharted Territories
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by TalRaimi »

Ehlana Voss felt their approach moments before the warning cry of ‘Schrai!’ was sounded. Spinning around she looked to where a gauntleted hand was pointing skyward; there were three of them, closing in fast on her and the small squad of Mandalorian’s who were with her. She shivered despite the fact she was sweating, three Schrai was more than enough to finish off their beleaguered little group.

“Only three,” a metallic voice crackled from beneath a red and blue Mandalorian helmet. “Should be a fair fight.” The helmet had been blue at the start of the battle.

Only three? Ehlana looked at him like he was crazy, which in her opinion he was. In fact the whole damn squad of them had been, twelve Mandalorian Warriors, each as mad as the next. They existed for war and battle and gloried in the honour of a worthy foe. Well in the Schrai they had certainly found a worthy foe, eight dead warriors could attest to that. Now there were just four of them left, and her. Against almost any other foe four Mandalorians and a Jedi would be a formidable force; against the Schrai there were barely adequate.

“Stay or move?” the metallic voice asked.

Did it matter? Ehlana couldn’t help but think they were as good as dead anyway. If this group of Schrai didn’t kill them then it was only a matter of time before the next group did. Did she really want to prolong the agony?

“Jedi Voss!” the Mandalorian voice snapped at her. “Stay or move?”

She hesitated only a second, still not used to the way the Mandalorians now deferred to her. It hadn’t been that way at the start of the battle, in fact they’d had nothing but contempt for her, but as the hours had worn on and the squad had found themselves separated from the main attack and being whittled down one by one, the remaining warriors had come to look to her more and more.

“Move,” she decided, sure that they were not suddenly following her orders because of her Jedi status. “We’re too cramped here, no space to move. Find me somewhere more open.”

The blue helmet nodded. The Mandalorian made a gesture to the rest of his comrades who as one began moving double time down the narrow cramped streets of the ancient city.

With a glance back to the approaching Schrai she broke into a jog and followed them. She’d long ago become lost in this labyrinthine section of the city, with its cracked cobblestone streets and moss covered walls, where crumbling buildings had created a warren of dead ends. Oh, she knew that the landing zone was somewhere to the south of her, and she could see the three great temples looming to the north east, but with the maze of switchbacks and dead ends she had no idea how to get to them. Not that the Schrai were giving her much time to plan a route.

This was the fifth group of Schrai that she’d encountered and so far all she knew of them was that they were as deadly as they were relentless. Every time she and her Mandalorian escorts had thought they’d seen the last of them another group of Shcrai showed up. The first few times they had almost exclusively focused on Ehlana first, as if her mere presence drove them into a frenzy, only attacking the Mandalorians once they became a direct threat. Of course they’d learned since then, subsequent groups taking out her escorts first, going for the soft targets, and gradually isolating her bit by bit. Such behaviour from the creatures was distinctly disturbing; it implied a shared intelligence that sent a shiver down her spine each time she thought about it.

“Over here,” a Mandalorian voice suddenly shouted before ducking out of sight through a hole in the side of the wall.

Ehlana followed, finding herself in a large stone courtyard. The courtyard was overgrown with weeds, with a set of stone steps leading to raised area at the north end and hemmed in on two sides by three-story buildings. It would do, at least she had room to swing her lightsaber which was more than she could have done had they stayed to the narrow streets.

“Take the high ground,” she ordered, pointing to the raised area. “I’ll try to contain them down here. Keep your distance and aim for their joints.”

Ehlana marvelled at her voice, amazed that it didn’t crack. She sounded so calm, so in control. It was a far cry from what she was really feeling. She glanced briefly at the four Mandalorians, wondering not for the first time if they felt fear? A Jedi Master back on Onderon had told her once; that ‘Once you master your fear, then nothing in the galaxy that can harm you.’ She laughed bitterly; she had believed him at the time, now she knew better.

She turned away, clasping her lightsaber in front of her and hoping the Mandalorians couldn’t see her hands shaking. Right now she was afraid; petrified in fact. Every instinct in her told her to turn and run, to leave these bloodthirsty fools to their deaths. If they wanted to die fighting the Schrai then who was she to stand in their way? Let the Mandalorians have their glory!

But she didn’t run. Couldn’t. She had been brought up a Jedi; her parents were almost as bullheaded and foolhardy as those four Mandalorians behind her. Turned out she was indeed their daughter. Would mum run? Would dad? Hell no.

And neither will I.

“Heads up,” a warning cry sounded. “Here they come.”

Ehlana ignited her lightsaber. The brilliant white/green blade blazed into existence, the quite humming of the weapon oddly reassuring. Dried blood stained the polished silver hilt, the same dried blood that coated her hair, her face and her shredded tan robe. Little of it was hers, although the rips and tears in her clothes were testament to the speed and aggression of the Schrai.

So much blood, yet so little of it’s mine. That doesn’t seem right.

The three Schrai came in low from the south side of the courtyard and a barrage of blaster fire lanced up to meet them. As if expecting it they dodged out of the way, two breaking to the left and one to the right… which flew straight into a carefully coordinated second barrage. The Mandalorians knew better than to simply aim for the creatures reinforced exoskeletons - they’d learnt the hard way they blasters didn’t so much as scratch them - and had instead aimed for the creature’s wings. Twin bolts of heavy blaster fire punched through the thinner membrane of the wing and sent the creature spiralling out of control to crash onto the roof of the southern building.

Ehlana had to admire the Mandalorians’ tactics, although it would only keep the Schrai out of the fight for a minute at best.

The remaining two insectoid Schrai dropped to the courtyard floor with an almost supernatural grace and immediately rushed Ehlana. They moved frighteningly quickly, closing the distance to Ehlana within the space of a heartbeat. Four arms, each with three findered claws slashed the air, intent on rending flesh from bone, but the young Jedi was no longer there.

With her heart thudding in her ears, she rolled to the side, swiping up with her lightsaber in an effort to sever one of the Schrai’s arms but finding only chitinous exoskeleton. The blade left a smoking gash but otherwise did little damage. These things had been engineered to fight Jedi.

Ehlana regained her feet, circling round as the two Schrai spun to face her. She lashed out again, but again hit only the creature’s hardened exoskeleton before she was forced to back peddled as the rightmost Schrai attacked. The monster towered above her, its four multifaceted eyes locked onto her, tracking her every minute movement as it swiped at her with its forearms. Her green blade was a blur of light as she countered, the Jedi weapon leaving small smoking cuts on each of the Schrai’s arms.

The creature shifted slightly to the left, giving its partner room to join the fight and suddenly Ehlana found herself under deadly attack. She felt herself meld completely with the Force, taking that final step and forming the strange symbiosis where the Force controlled her actions but also obeyed her commands. She found herself moving with a speed and grace that awed her, her body danced around the Schrai, their bladed claws missing her by mere fractions of a centimetre. Her lightsaber was her partner in the dance, blocking, parrying, it cut through the air like an angry green hornet. And yet for all that she was barely fast enough.

Dimly she became aware that the Mandalorians had opened fire. Their blaster bolts drumming against the Schrai armour like rain drumming against a window for all the good they did. Yet it must have been enough of an irritation for one of the Schrai, as it suddenly broke off its assault on Ehlana and turned to face the Mandalorian above it. A single flex from its powerful legs and it leapt onto the raised surface and charged the four warriors. For the time being that was the last Ehlana saw of what was happening as she suddenly sensed danger behind her.

Reacting purely on instinct she vaulted backwards, launching herself high into the air just in time to avoid being skewered by the third Schrai who had finally entered the battle. She landed a few meters back, had just enough time for her mind to register how close she had been to death, for the icy grip of fear to give her heart another squeeze, before the two Schrai attacked again.

I can’t beat them! They’re too fast, too well armoured. I can’t find an opening!

Part of her mind was screaming at her, scared and panicky, counting the seconds until her death. Yet the other half of her mind was at war with it, stubborn, defiant, refusing to give up. That part of her mind wanted to live, wanted to be able to see her friends and family again, wanted to save her four Mandalorian protectors.

I’ve already killed five of your kind, her mind snarled. Bring it!

The Schrai were relentless, claws slashing, snapping, and cutting through the air. She got in too close once and was almost speared by the Schrai’s two poisonous inner claws, receiving a deep slash to her side as she dodged out of range again. The pain ran hot and angry across her flesh, spurring her on to move faster, to think quicker, and she suddenly found an opening. A single strike at an exposed join the one of the Schrai lost its right forearm.

She felt a surge of elation. She could win this.

It was short lived however as the Schrai with the undamaged wings took to the air. It began to circle around, looking to strike her from behind. She danced back, slashing wildly at the airborne creature, driving it back before having to return her attention to the Schrai in front of her.

Her muscles would have been burning by now without the Force to aid her and she wondered what she would look like to another Jedi’s eyes right now, she felt she was drawing enough of the force that she must be glowing!

Without warning the three armed Schrai spun suddenly, it lashed out and a grey and blue armoured form was suddenly thrown through the air. Ehlana recognised the opportunity for what it was, and jabbed her lighsaber blade up and under the exposed armpit and into the heart. In response the Schrai’s arm suddenly snapped down, locking her lightsaber in place, while it stabbed at her with its secondary arms. Left with no choice she let go of her weapon and threw herself away from the dying Schrai.

She landed on her back as the Schrai collapsed to the ground, its legs still kicking, claws twitching, her lightsaber lost underneath it. She looked up just in time to see the flying insect coming for her.

So this was it, the time of her reckoning was at hand. She would have a brief second of regret and then the creature would gut her. Well frack you, she thought!

The death blow never came however as a barrage of blaster bolts hammer into the creature. The bolts did little real damage, but it was enough to turn the Schrai away from her. It flew over her, taking a lazy swipe at her as it passed and she rolled away taking a nasty cut to her shoulder. Biting down on the pain she watched the Schrai barrel into the single Mandalorian who stood pouring blaster fire into it.

The warrior could have attempted to move, could have tried to dive out of the way, but he didn’t. Both of the Schrai’s claws punched through his chest armour and the Mandalorian convulsed, he would be dead in moments, but the warrior refused to die alone. In his final act he shoved his blaster up under the creature’s armpit and pulled the trigger as many times as he could before his heart stopped. The two of them, Mandalorian and Schrai, died together.

Tough bastards. Both of them.

“Are you alright, Jedi Voss?” a familiar metallic voice sounded from her right.

Was she? She didn’t know. She looked to the Mandalorian; the last surviving Mandalorian. Two had died when the first Schrai had attacked them, but like their brother only moments ago, they had taken the vile creature with them. Twelve of them had started out with her, now only one was left. What was she feeling now, guilty? Survivors’ guilt, perhaps?

A bitter smile crept on to her lips. If it was survivors guilt then at least she wouldn’t be burdened with it long. With only the two of them left they wouldn’t survive another attack.

“Jedi Voss?” the metallic voice asked again and Ehlana looked up to find the warrior offering his hand. “How are you?”

“I’m…” Ehlana started to say then faltered.

I’m what? I’m fine? Full of the joys of spring? Scared out of my whits? Feeling incredibly pessimistic?

“I’m alive,” she finally settled on as he hauled her to her feet.

The man nodded and she wondered what he looked like behind that T shaped visor. “Good. Then we carry on.”

“Carry on?” Ehlana asked as she rolled the Schrai over and retrieved her lightsaber. “Carry on to what? We’ll never make it to the temples or the landing zone. Why continue? What else is left to us but to die?”

The Mandalorian stared down at her from behind his helmet. “Indeed. We carry on until we fall in battle of course,” he replied and Ehlana detected a puzzled tone in his voice. “As you say, what else is left?”

Glory in death. Glory in battle. It was the Mandalorian way. Ehlana shrugged, it made a strange kind of sense to her right now. Death was the one constant in life, why fear it anymore?

I’m sorry mum. Sorry dad. I’m not sure what my death will count for if anything, but I only hope you know that I died well. Like a Jedi. Like a warrior.

She smiled up at the Mandalorian.

“Lead on.”
'Would you do it with me, heal the scars and change the stars?'

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

The Hopolyte sniper watched commander Gattoh’s team make into the temple with ease; he had accomplished his mission, now he had one thing left to do, destroy as many droids as possible and die with honor.

With a quick snap and hiss, the building that the Hopolyte was on crumbled beneath him as a rocket from an AE droids destroyed the ancient foundation. The Hopolyte fell down into the rubble below, engulfed in the dust and debris. After the Brotherhood soldier came to, he awoke with an Assault droid standing over him. The droid hadn’t noticed that he had survived the blast, but he had to wonder why it was standing near him. As the Hopolyte looked around the rubble, he saw his fellow compatriots lying dead in the rubble. One of the Hopolytes had a few War Droids scattered around his dead carcass. The Hopolyte sniper was proud that his men didn’t die without a fight.

The sniper knew there was only one thing left to do, so with a battered hand, the Sniper took off his helmet. His face bore scares, reminders of battles he had fought long ago. He reached down at his utility belt and pulled his blaster pistol. The droid finally caught what he was doing and looked down at the downed Hopolyte and was about to stomp the soldier to death when the Hopolyte fired off a few rounds destroying the droids head. The droid crumpled to the ground near the Hopolyte’s fleet, but the Hopolyte sniper was finally subdued as a War droid fired three laser bolts into his chest. The Brotherhood soldier’s last thoughts as he lay dying were of happier times with his son.

=-=-=-=-=

"Oh I see, so it's okay for us to throw our lives away today because someone else is going to clean up our mess tomorrow, right?"

Isis’s words bugged John but he didn’t have the words to express his feelings about the matter. It was a complicated subject for John to think about, specially when it conflicted with his duty as an Acolyte and him as a human being.

To John, he was taught that duty came first before all other things. To give ones life in the line of duty was an honored thing in the Brotherhood, but not something someone should stride for or want. It was a natural thing of life. Isis just didn’t understand how it was. How it felt to lose a man under your command, it was heart wrenching but you gained accustomed to it overtime. The Brotherhood has been fighting this war for decades and many have fallen along the way, and they weren’t going to stop now or all those lives lost along the way would have been for nothing. No, John knew that life was precious and that dying for a cause that would rid the galaxy of evil was worth having casualties.

After they made it inside the temple, they were surprised to see it vacant. No droids or cult followers could be seen. After entering the building they decided to go deeper into the temple in hopes to find the captured Jedi Padawan and any sign of the coveted Necromonus. The entire temple reeked of darkside energy, which made it hard for John and the other Force sensitive’s’ to sense anything, so if there were to be a trap, they wouldn’t be able to sense it. Their Force presence was a small glimmer of light in a see of darkness.

“Ugh!” John turned to see one of the Jedi Padawans struggling to keep it together as they traveled further into the temple. The Padawan was sweating profusely and was shivering with fear. The Knight that the Padawan was assigned to was trying to tell the young Forcer that there was nothing to fear, but John knew better. In the back of John’s mind, he knew the chances of success were slim, and any hope of getting off this forsaken planet was next to nothing. Sivter had them by the ear and he knew it. The monster was just toying with them for his sick and demented pleasure. John scoffed at the thought of Sivter laughing at their attempt to stop him.

“They must not know where this Necromonus is either. We haven’t seen anything like what was on those holo-recordings.” One of the Jedi Knights stated.

“Or he is just waiting for us to get close enough to us it.” An Acolyte retorted from behind the Jedi.

“That way be, but why the delay? Just get it over with and be down with it.”

“Because Sivter needs something.” John stated. “Why else would he delay, there must be something he needs before obtaining the Necromonus.

“Sivter is manipulative, if whatever he is waiting for, it will surface in due time. We are playing his game now, but it is up to us how the game ends.” The same Jedi Knight that was calming his Padawan spoke up.

John shook his head in agreement. The Jedi was right, but how much of it was right? Could the Jedi and the Brotherhood really alter the chain of events that have already occurred, and can they stop Sivter from obtaining the Necromonus? From where John was standing, no, they couldn’t, but there was hope. They just needed to take one step at a time.

“You hear that?” One of the Acolytes said. “It sounds like someone is fighting further down the hall.”

“Come on! It could be one of the other groups that made it to the temple.” A Jedi Padawan said as he started toward where the sound of fighting was coming from.

As they made it to the end of the hall, they saw that Vulcan and his entire team was engaged in a huge battle with the Cult of Shadow forcers and that John and Faye’s group had just snuck up from behind the enemy line of defense.

From the looks of it, the Cult had a huge force of droids with a handful of Darksiders taking position on the top of the stairs while Vulcan and his team where pinned down around a collapsed stone column. Some of the darksiders were engaged in lightsaber combat with some of the Apprentices and Acolytes near what seemed to be where Vulcan had come in at. Unfortunately for Vulcan, he had sustained heavy loses from the droid and Schrai onslaught.

As John and Faye's group rushed into the enemy line, John made eye contact with Vulcan; he could see that the Gotal was surprised and happy to see him as he sliced a droid in half with his lightsaber.

John ran up on an AE droid and sliced one of its legs off before it could turn around and fire on him. The droid collapsed on its side, giving John a clear shot at the droids exposed neck. With both hands, John chopped the AE droids head off. After killing the AE droid, John turned his focus to an approaching War droid and threw his light saber at the droids chest. The lightsaber sliced through the approaching droid and stuck into a droid directed behind the first droid. It was a two for one kill as John quickly retrieved his lightsaber. As John sliced down two more droids, he saw that two Schrai had just came in from an adjacent hall close two where Faye was fighting at.

“FAYE, WATCHOUT!” John yelled at the top of his lungs as he tried to hurry toward where she was at, but he knew he wouldn’t be able to get to where she was before the Schrai did. As he ran toward her, he was bogged down with droids. He hastily sliced through the droids, but no matter how fast he destroyed them, another one took its place, he was cut off from Faye for the moment.

User avatar
Halomek
Master of the Ninja Post
Posts: 8382
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2003 9:51 pm
Location: A galaxy far, far, away...

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Halomek »

“There’s the one I want,” Sivter thought to himself with satisfaction. He was starting to think he was going to have to use one of his own people for the task at hand, not that he particularly cared, but a Jedi, particularly a specific type of Jedi, was going to be more useful to him than one of his cult members. That was why he had intentionally delayed the acquisition of the artifact until the coalition of Jedi and Brotherhood could arrive and why he didn’t simply wipe them all out – for Sivter, this battle was more about observation than bloodshed.

***

By Sivter’s command through their hive mind, the remaining Schrai on the battlefield suddenly took to the air until they converged on one spot. They then descended on a small group of Jedi fighting some battle droids. As one, the Schrai swooped in with murderous intent and swarmed the Jedi, killing all but one; a blond-haired Padawan. The Jedi stood her ground despite facing certain death, but aside from taking her lightsaber from her, the Schrai didn’t move to attack her.

One of the Schrai spoke with a voice similar to Sivter’s as others reached out and grabbed her. “You belong to the Cult of Shadow now, Raven Moonlighter.”

***

“Master,” Raii spoke up quietly. “The Lightsider forces are nearing our position. Allow me to dispatch them for you.”

Sivter held up a hand. “That won’t be necessary,” he said calmly as he started walking towards the temple’s opening. Raii followed, as did a group of Schrai, including the one carrying Caitlyn. “The time has come to initiate the final phase of this battle. I’ll dispose of these annoyances and we can depart for our true destination.”

Sivter looked down at a Feeorin leading some warriors up the steps to the temple. He almost had to smile at how determined they looked, little realizing that they were hopelessly dancing to his tune. Their behavior was exactly as he had predicted.

“Attention pests,” Sivter’s voice boomed out to them. “You have one chance to flee before I destroy you all. Practice that vaunted wisdom you claim to have and take the offer.”

User avatar
Pryde
Pryngles
Posts: 16863
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 2:11 am
Location: Earth

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Pryde »

At the sound of John's voice Faye turned around to see two Schrai bearing down on her. She immediately ducked to the side as the first one passed, narrowly escaping it's sharp claws but the second one managed to cut her on the side of her body just above her left hip. Her right hand went immediately to the injury as her left hand shot up over her shoulder to grasp the two halves of her Qinata. She quickly pulled them free of the strap and assembled the weapon then she turned and stabbed the first Schrai to recover and come back at her again. The blade dug into its center mass but it didn't pierce very far at first. Faye kept the pressure up, however, and forced the creature to the ground pinning it with the force she applied to her Qinata eventually edging the blade deeper into its body bit by bit. The second Schrai saw what was happening to its fellow and used this opportunity to launch an attack on Faye from behind.

THe Schrai charged at her unprotected back but when it was within just a few feet of her something tackled it to the ground. Isis tussled with the being, receiving several scratches on her arms, legs and abdomen before she was finally tossed off. The Schrai quickly got to its feet to finish her off but a sudden beeping from behind drew its attention. Somehow Isis had managed to stick a grenade to its back before she was tossed away and the explosion tore the creature to shreds, spilling its blood and pieces of its body all over Isis as she lay on the ground near its feet. A moment or two later Clara was at her side reaching a hand down to her. Isis graciously accepted it and allowed Clara to pull her back up to her feet.

"That was reckless," Clara chided her.

Isis just shrugged. "What can I say? No one ever prided me on my intelligence."

User avatar
Mir
KING OF STRONG STYLE
Posts: 18594
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2006 5:43 pm

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Mir »

There was a presence. It was one that the hadn't felt in a while. The time frame between when he had felt the presence wasn't important, though in the back of his mind, it made him wonder whether or not he really was ready to take on the person whose presence was forefront in his mind. Renato Farani made his way through the ranks of the enemy, by himself. He had been working with Tone and Sona but he had broken away from them a short while ago. They had all felt Caitlyn's outburst through the Force and Tone had been concerned about Caitlyn, deciding to head over to where they had felt the Force Bomb and see if she and Sona could help. She had tried to get Renato to come with her, but he had sensed the presence and almost everything else had left his mind. Renato was trained solely on this one objective and when he found the presence, he was going to do what he had been training to do for a good time now.

It hadn't taken him that long to get to where he needed to go. What he was trying to find wasn't that far away, at least for him, when his senses had been heightened by the Force after what had happened. Renato had his lightsaber in one hand and he had his sword strapped to his back. He hadn't encountered too many Schrai so far, but the ones that he had encountered had been hard to beat, that had been sure. It had taken him, Tone, and Sona working together to bring them down. He hadn't been too sure about how well Sona could fight, but after seeing her in action, he was confident that she could, at the very least, take care of herself. Which meant that he could rest a little easy with her and Tone being by themselves during the battle.

He revealed himself as his foe cut down a group of Brotherhood soldiers. The man stood there for a moment, surveying the damage around him and looked over his shoulder. "So... the boy I left alive has come to challenge me again. Renato Farani, wasn't it?"

"Arksis Nan. I've been waiting for this for a while. I'm ready to face you." Renato said in reply, igniting his lightsaber. He refused to use the sword unless he absolutely had to.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Salvatore chose this moment to poke his head out and look around. "What happened to my Mommy?!! Where is she? I can't find her." He asked, looking around again. He turned and looked directly at Isis for answers.

OOC: Again, my apologies on the delay, Omekz.

And mad short Pryde, but I wanted to get Sal back into the mix a little bit.

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

Moments before,

Rae’fear’s blade met Don’s as both danced to the ever present song of war. Both the Cult of Shadow and the Brotherhood fought all around them as they clashed sabers. None of the others could keep up with the duel as they fought violently in the inner sanctums of the ancient Sith temple. Silver and red clashed together as they fought on, neither one giving an inch or taking one.

As Rae’fear swiped at Don’s chest, Don quickly blocked and slammed his light blue fist into the Chiss’s face. The blow knocked Rae’fear off balance as he stumbled to the side, but never letting Don out of his sight even if one of his eyes were blurred by the hit. Blood trickled from the side of Rae’fear’s mouth as furry began to boil inside him; he very much wanted to slay a Paladin. It would be a grand trophy for his master and bring great satisfaction to himself. With delay, Rae’full pivoted right and jumped into the air, somersaulting over the Brotherhood Paladin and unleashed a powerful force push into the Feeorin’s back. Don flew forward but never fell to the ground and an Acolyte caught Don in mid fall. Rae’fear was already in a charge by this time and swiped at both Brotherhood scum. The Acolyte held up his blade to block the attack as Don rolled to the side and jumped to his feet. As Don was irritated with allow the Chiss to knock him off his feet, he grabbed the Dark Knight and pulled him away from the defending Acolyte. Rae’fear flew a few meters back, crashing into a droid. As Rae’fear looked up from his back, he saw a silver lightsaber barring down on top of him, so without hesitation, he held up his lightsaber to block the attack. After blocking, he managed to knock the lightsaber to the side, allowing him to recover back to his feet. Both fighters were now facing each other as they moved in a circle formation, seeing who will strike first. From outside the private fight, a Cult Disciple came up from behind Don hoping to surprise the Paladin as he was distracted by Rae”fear, but Don had sensed the danger and was already making his killing move. As the Disciple was swiping Don’s head, he was dropping to the floor. Don landed on his hands and quickly turned himself over onto his back and jabbed his lightsaber blade into the charging Disciple. As he stabbed the disciple he launched the now dead Disciple over himself with his foot so that the dead body landed at Rae’fears feet.

Rae’fear stepped over the dead Disciple and stabbed at where Don was laying, but Don rolled to the side as Rae’fear’s blade stabbed the stone floor where Don had been at; Don spun at the small of his back and kicking the lightsaber out of Rae’fears hands. Now that Rae’fear was defenseless, Don quickly jumped to his feet and stabbed Rae’fear in the side where he had been stabbed before by another Brotherhood member and the spot was still tender, so the pain was heightened.

“Au-gh!” Rae’fear winced as Don came up close from behind and grabbed and put the Chiss in a headlock.

“You’re weak, Chiss.” Don tightened his arm around the Rae’fear’s neck. Rae’fear struggled for air as his windpipes were pinched shut by Don’s large arms and bicep. “The darkside is weak, so you are weak, and now you will die because you are weak,” Just as Don was about to snap the Chiss’s neck, a much grander Force presence made itself known. Don looked around the large room and saw that his men had finally killed the last of the miss-users. The Chiss in his arms went limp so Don dropped the Chiss and motioned for his men to head further up the stairs. Is this you, Sivter, is this your presence I feel? Don had a eager determination to find out who this was and he soon did. As Don and the rest of his men made it halfway up the stares, the monster himself was there standing at the top of the stairs.

“Attention pests,” Sivter’s voice boomed out to them. “You have one chance to flee before I destroy you all. Practice that vaunted wisdom you claim to have and take the offer.”

Don scoffed at Sivter’s words, “Give up now, and I’ll make your death a quick one, miss-user.” Sivter laughed at the remark as Don pointed his finger at the hooded figure. Don’s men were all eager to charge and finally take Sivter out and finally be done with this war.

“Paladin Cuhrka,” One of the Acolyte’s whispered to Don. “We can end this here; let’s charge now, while we have him in our sights.”

Don didn’t answer the Acolyte; he just stood their staring at the Defel with intensity, he was contemplating what to do. Don had gone over this scenario a million times in his head; what he would do to Sivter if he had him in his grasps, but he didn’t yet. Sivter was still a good six meters up the stairs and was surrounded by an entourage of Schrai and Dark Lords. No, he couldn’t just charge, or they would all surly die here, but he needed to do something. So he would wait until Sivter made the first move.

“Why do you need the Necromonus? You already have enough power to wage a war against us, so why the Necromonus? It’s a means to an end…it’s not a weapon!” Don said as his eyes flared with a fire of a hundred suns.

=-=-=-=-=

Raven was scared as she wondered why they didn't kill her like the rest of them, why her? Is this a dream, no, a nightmare? Is this one of my nightmares that I've been having? I fear it isn't, there will be no waking up in a bath of my own sweat and realizing it was all just a bad dream, this was for real this time. I'm in danger and I am powerless to defend myself. Raven started to cry as the Schrai warrior held her in its metal embrace. I should have never left home, brother. Raven sobbed helplessly as one of the Schrai warriors took her up into the sky.

User avatar
Pryde
Pryngles
Posts: 16863
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 2:11 am
Location: Earth

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Pryde »

"She's--," Isis started to say, unsure of what to tell the tiny Anuran.

"She'll be fine," Clara assured him, "We'll find her, don't you worry about a thing."

Thanks, Isis thought to herself as she glanced at Clara and then back to Salvatore. The battle was still raging on around them so standing here was becoming move and more dangerous by the second. Isis turned to Clara to suggest they should get back to the fight when a sudden pain nearly doubled her over.

"Sis," Clara cried in concern for her friend.

Isis had her teeth clenched tightly and it was awhile before she could answer. "I'm fine," she told them, "Just a bit light headed is all. Anyway, we better help the others."

Clara wasn't very convinced and took a step forward to support her but Isis pushed her away. "I said I'm fine," she snapped, "It's just a little sc--ra... tch..."

She suddenly collapsed onto her knees before falling into a heap. Before she slipped into unconsciousness she could barely make out Clara leaning over her saying something to her though she could not understand what was being said. The pain was too much and eventually it overwhelmed her causing her to pass out. Her body went limp in Clara's arms and the sights and sounds of the battle surrounding them slipped completely from her mind...

User avatar
Halomek
Master of the Ninja Post
Posts: 8382
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2003 9:51 pm
Location: A galaxy far, far, away...

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Halomek »

“Sis! Sis!” Clara shouted repeatedly as she shook Isis to try and get her to keep her eyes open. “Blast it, Sinclair, why don’t you ever listen to me?!”

Despite all of Clara’s efforts, however, Isis remained limp. Clara frantically tried to recall the limited medical training she had received as a member of the New Republic SpecForce. She wasn’t a fully trained medic by any means, but every SpecForce member was taught how to treat the most basic battlefield wounds since their missions usually called for the teams being placed behind enemy lines.

Clara searched Isis’s body and noticed that some of the scratches had swelled up and the skin around the wounds was turning an unhealthy shade of blue. “Poison!” she hissed to herself before ripping off some strips of cloth from her shirt to make tourniquets. “How much worse can those damned bugs get?!”

She didn’t know how fast the poison could spread, but Clara did her best to cut off the flow from the wounds, or at least hopefully slow it down with the tourniquets. Clara reached into her belt and pulled out another stimulant to make sure Isis’s heart didn’t shut down from the venom, but that was about all she could do with her limited medical supplies.

It was only then that she noticed the concerned looks of Sal, Faye, and John. Clara looked at Faye and shook her head. “I’m sorry, but I didn’t sign up for this crusade. I only came along to keep my friends safe. I’ve got to get Sis out of here so she can get the proper treatment.”

“How do you plan to leave?” Faye asked pragmatically. “We can’t contact our ships in orbit.”

Clara pulled out a small homing beacon from another pouch on her belt. “I had a feeling I might need a quick extraction, so I had this homing beacon keyed to the scanners on my ship. Ace has been able to track my location this entire time.” Clara then twisted a dial on the beacon. “I’ve just changed the frequency of the beacon, which is the signal for extraction. It’s a little trick I learned in SpecForce. Communications might be cut off, but I can still send some basic commands through different fluctuations of the beacon. Most jammers don’t bother to block the bandwidth of beacons since they’re so short range and can’t be used for vocal communication.”

“I won’t try to stop you,” Faye said to her, “but I have a request: if this works, then I want you to take as many of the injured back at our staging area as possible back to Onderon. If you can get past whatever the Cult of Shadow has up in orbit, then send a call for help as soon as you get past their jamming range.”

Clara nodded. “I’ll do what I can. If anybody can get us out of here, Ace can.” She looked back at Sal. “Whiskers, you’re coming with me too.”

***

Arksis turned around fully to face his new opponent, one of the few he had ever left alive. Only the orders of the Dark Master had spared Renato last time. The retreat from Onderon had given the Padawan a second chance, but it was borrowed time. There would be no sudden retreat from this battle. This time the duel would only end when one of them died.

Arksis raised the great gleaming obsidian sword, Necroban, into an en guard position. In spite of the number of opponents it had already slain this battle, the sword showed no signs of being used. The power of the sword caused any blood or debris to turn to dust and flake off from the blade.

“If you’re truly ready, then why hesitate?” Arksis asked rhetorically before charging forward and swinging the sword. Renato managed to block it with his lightsaber, but found his footing pushed back by the sheer force of the blow. “You should have come at me from behind when you still had the chance!”

***

“I’m not in the habit of explaining myself to the dead,” Sivter answered Don coolly. “And I don’t feel like wasting my time dueling you Jedi rejects.” He grinned as he reached inside his cloak. “That’s right, I know about your oh-so-secretive Brotherhood. You’ve only made it this far because I’ve allowed it. In fact, I planned for it. I plan for everything.”

Sivter pulled his hand back out, grasping a small trigger device. “I’m beginning to think I’m the only one in this galaxy with any vision. For example, if you weren’t so narrow-minded, you might have noticed a lot of the stone tiles of this ancient temple have been dug up and put back.” Sivter took a moment to savor the look of shock and revelation on the faces of the Brotherhood before pressing the trigger.

A series of explosions ripped through the floor, coughing up molten stone chunks and other shrapnel amidst the Brotherhood warriors. A few of the explosions engulfed some of the warriors whole, incinerating them completely.

Sivter didn’t bother to wait for the smoke to dissipate and used the Force to clear it out of his way. The groans of the injured and the dying sounded throughout the room as the bodies of the Brotherhood warriors; or in some cases parts of them; littered the area. “You were outmatched from the moment you challenged me,” Sivter said dispassionately to the few survivors as he made his way through the carnage, followed by the rest of his entourage. “Those of you still clinging to life would be wise to accept the futility of standing against me.”

Once they were outside the temple, Sivter nodded to the Schrai with him as each of the insectoid warrior drones grabbed onto one of the non-Schrai and lifted them into the air. Sivter looked over to the pale Arkanian to his left. “The time has come, Vlad’druin. Send the order to activate the temples and reveal our true target.”

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

“Your will be done, my master.” Vlad’druin sent the signal out for all the teams stationed in all three temples to activate the spires located inside the temples. In order to activate the pillars a sacrifice would have to be made, so the Dark Knights chosen to give their life did without question. They threw themselves onto the ancient Sith spikes allowing their life’s blood to spill onto the spires. The spires in turned sucked the energy out of the sacrificed victim, thus activating the ancient machines berried underneath the Sith world.

In response, the entire city shook as larger buildings crumbled from the violent shakes, crushing anyone unlucky enough to be in them or under them at the time. As the city and dirt behind the central temple crumbled into the planet a gigantic pyramid raised to takes its place. It was a sight to see as half the city fell into the planet, leaving large crevices in between the forming pyramid and the city around it. The only thing connecting to the raising pyramid was a stand alone stone bridge that rose with the pyramid. The bridge finally found its place by connecting the middle temple with the still rising pyramid. It would be the only way for the coalition forces to get to the pyramid without flying.

=-=-=-=-=
Don rose from the dust and debris as many of his dishonored compatriots lay dead at his feet. His face was cut and smeared with blood not his own. Just as Don raised many of the Acolyte’s and their Apprentices did as well, they were helping those that couldn’t. Many died in the blast but it did not stop the Brotherhood from wanting stop Sivter from gaining the Necromonus.

Don staggered from the violent shakes he could hear the moans and screams of his wounded and dying men as he made it to the exit where Sivter and his men left from. As he got to the opening, he saw a huge pyramid rising from the ground as the city crumbled around it, burying anyone and anything caught in it. Don looked across the huge cavern at the monster that caused this to happen. “Sivter….SIVTER!” Don's grip around his lightsaber tightened as he stared out at the pyramid, "We will have our duel and we'll see who takes this day."

=-=-=-=-=

The fight was mostly won before the massive earthquake started, but some died when the pillars in the temple collapsed. John and the others struggled to get out; luckily they made it to the courtyard in time before the entire temple fell in on itself, killing anyone left inside. As they made it to the courtyard what droids were left outside was easily put down by the Jedi and Acolytes that fled the temple with John and the others. They were now alone, with many of the warriors wounded or dying.

John was panting heavily as he had to carry one of the Jedi’s that had lost a leg in one of the duels that took place inside. As John laid the wounded Jedi down on the side of a crumbled water fountain, he staggered over to where Faye was sitting. The ground still shook as he made his way to Faye, none of them knew why this was happening, but they figured it had to do with something the Cult of Shadow did.

John leaned up against a stone near Faye, he could see that the Jedi Master was exhausted, they all were but they couldn’t give up yet. Not now, they still had to stop Sivter from obtaining the Necromonus, “We need to get the wounded out of here, or they’ll surely die.” John was scraped up and bruised from the falling stones, but was still alive, he saw that Faye looked the same too."

“Don’t worry about the wounded, John. Clara has it covered. As soon as Faye said that, a ship appeared up in the sky from orbit and just as soon as he saw it, the ship started making its landing preparations inside the courtyard and then finally landed near the group. “Come, let’s get the wounded on board while we still have time."

=-=-=-=-=

Herra turned her head to the side as she felt pain and suffering. The fight was taking a toll on her but she kept going, she didn't allow it to slow her down in anyway. The entire planet was masked in darkness. As Herra attended to a wounded Jedi who had sustained a wound in the face, the man was screaming in pain as his face swelled, there was nothing Herra could do to help the poor man, but ease his pain, so Herra laid her hand on the man’s forehead and slowly eased the man’s suffering. After a moment went by, the Jedi finally passed. The Jedi had died by one of the Schrai. She had seen many similar wounds and they all ended up the same, but as she encountered them, and she came to the conclusion that it really determined the severity of the wound if the person was going to die right away or die slowing. She figured if the person had a minor scratch that it could be treated and the person could be saved.

“These wounded are coming in faster then we can handle, we must withdraw from the city.” A medical examiner replied, as he distracted Herra from her work.

“No, our people are still out there and they need our help.” Herra stood up and looked around, she saw how many were actually wounded. It was unfortunate that the numbers were too high, the place wasn’t safe anymore and they were understaffed with qualified healers. “Have all able bodies report to the Velox-class shuttle, I’m afraid that our forcers have been broken, and they are going to need our assistance. So gather those that are willing to fight and have them get on the Star Ringer.” The medical examiner shrugged and then shook his head in agreement. Herra turned to one of the Jedi Masters that was listening in and said, “Alright, we need to take all the wounded and put them into the other Velox ship, we won’t have enough room to put everyone in the medical bay, so we’ll have to use every inch of space on the ship to place them in. I want you to help with getting all the severely wounded into the medical bay first, and have everyone else start putting them into the cargo hold.”

“Yes, ma’am.”

“Good, we don’t have much time.” Herra started helping one of the Hopolyte soldiers that lost a leg in a explosion to his feet and escorted the man to the ship. They were going to have to make this quick if they were going to have enough time to help out Don and the others.

User avatar
Halomek
Master of the Ninja Post
Posts: 8382
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2003 9:51 pm
Location: A galaxy far, far, away...

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Halomek »

Sivter and those with him landed at the base of the enormous temple that had risen out of the ground, right at the point where the bridge and the temple connected. According to the information the Cult of Shadow had uncovered, the Necromonus could only be accessed and recovered when one reached the top of the grand temple, however they were starting at the base because Sivter had a few things to take care of first.

The first was fairly simple. Mere moments after Sivter had landed, a jet-black ship barely larger than a starfighter descended next to him. This was Sivter’s personal vessel, the Specter.

Sivter looked over at Raii. “Take Caitlyn back to the Edict and guard her until I arrive,” he ordered. “I have further plans for her. I’ll send for a transport when the objective is seized.”

Raii nodded. “As you wish, Master,” she answered before taking the limp form of the Jedi Padawan from the warrior drone and depositing her into the passenger seat. Raii jumped into the pilot’s seat a moment later before taking the Specter back into the sky.

Almost as soon as the Specter left, a group of Schrai arrived holding a clearly frightened Jedi. She did her best to put on a brave front, but it was blatantly transparent to Sivter what her true emotions were.

“Why so frightened, Raven?” Sivter asked calmly as he approached her. “Your importance to my cause will be greater than anything you could possibly accomplish with the Jedi.”

Raven looked at him warily. “What are you talking about? I won’t serve the Cult of Shadow.”

Sivter grinned as he placed a clawed hand against her head and began to enter her consciousness. “You speak as if you had a choice about it. I promise your loyalty to me and your true purpose will soon be made abundantly clear.”

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

“You’re a bastard!” Raven exclaimed at the hooded figure but he did not respond. Sivter’s claw sent cold shivers down her back which made her shiver uncontrollably. Raven didn’t know exactly if it was the fear or Sivter actually touching her that made her shiver, and it could have been both all together that made her shiver so violently, but whatever it was, Raven began to feel sick because of it.
As he stood there sifting through her memories like a worm burrowing through the dirt, she couldn’t help but think what he was looking for in her mind and then it hit her almost suddenly. The constant night terrors, and the horrible headaches, it all made sense now. Raven’s mother always said she had a special gift about her, but she wouldn't have thought it be this. She had the gift of foresight, a Seer of sorts. Sivter needs a Seer. It all lead toward the Necromonus, there was no other reason she would be alive now if he didn’t need her to activate the Necromonus. But will he discard me after I activate it?

You understand now. Sivter's voice echoed in Raven's head. Raven looked looked at Sivter oddly as he probed deeper into her mind.

“Get out of my head!” Raven struggled to get free from the clutches of her captures but it was no use, she was powerless to do anything.

“Your mind is interesting, you tell people lie’s and you deceive them, to accomplish what? You accomplish nothing.” Sivter was amused by what he found in Raven’s head. “Don’t worry, your little secret is safe with me, but it matters not, there will be no redemption for you after I am done with you.” Sivter’s words were like ice daggers in Raven’s heart, all her thoughts and dreams were corrupted by that monster. Raven couldn’t hide anything from him, he probably knew her better then she knew herself, and that frightened her. Raven started to cry as she fell to her knees, her mind was raped by Sivter. Raven wanted to cry out for help so badly but she knew it would be useless, so she just sat there crying helplessly into her hands.

User avatar
Mir
KING OF STRONG STYLE
Posts: 18594
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2006 5:43 pm

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Mir »

Sal jumped out of Clara's pack and landed on the ground next to Isis. He leaned over and proceeded to bathe her face with his tongue to the best of his ability. "Whiskers, she's been poisoned. Don't do that." Clara said, attempting to pick him up, but Sal refused, squirming out of her grasp and continuing to lick Isis' face. On her second attempt, she was much more successful and managed to hold him firmly. "What's the matter with you? You can't help her by licking her and you don't know if you'll get the poision." She added.

"I can help!" Salvatore said with a small smile. He looked around, seeing the carnage and destruction that was everywhere and turned back. "You'll help me find my Mommy right? And Aunt Isis will help too? And Uncle Tav? Right, Aunt Clara?"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The Jedi Padawan spun around, bringing his emerald bladed lightsaber around for an attack which Arksis blocked. "Because I would like to think that I have some semblance of honor." Renato replied, doing a backstep and then attacking once more. His stab was more of a lunge, he was being too reckless. He wasn't approaching the fight the way he had been planning to, hoping to, even dreaming he would. Each time this fight had come to him, the scene of the battle had been a murky, shifting landscape, but the two combatants had remained the same. Each time he had been fighting with much more precision, much more dedication. But Renato knew that a dream was just that, a dream. He had yet to grasp his fiancee's belief in dreams and visions, despite how much they had affected his and his friends' lives in the time since he had last seen Arksis Nan.

In this fight, he was reaching beyond his means. He was too eager, too anxious to cut Arksis down and achieve justice. He wasn't playing the game properly and it was going to cost him. Whether it was mild injury or death he didn't know. Worse, would be allowing Arksis to survive and the two of them having to meet another day. As he parried an attack from Arksis that had been aimed at his vitals, Renato knew that he could allow that to happen. No matter what. He jumped then, to the right side of the Twi'lek to dodge another attack from the Cult of Shadow Dark Lord, and brought his blade down in a tight controlled movement, his attack batted away by the Sith Sword.

Arksis paused for a moment and then spoke. "Shii-Cho? You mean to defeat me with Shii-Cho? You haven't learned a thing since Onderon, I'm disappointed."

"I've learned what I've needed to learn." Renato said, taking a few steps back to recenter himself.

Caution was going to win him this fight, being mindful of his surroundings would save him. He prepared himself, knowing that being too anxious was going to cost him. He had to slow himself down.

But would he be able to do it in time?

User avatar
Pryde
Pryngles
Posts: 16863
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 2:11 am
Location: Earth

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Pryde »

The surviving Brotherhood forcers emerged from the temple onto the bridge that would lead them to the Necromonus. Before they could move two steps closer towards Sivter and the rest of his party, however, they were stopped by a sudden surprise attack from Cult disciples lead by a woman carrying a lightwhip. She smiled maniacally as she cut down one of the Brotherhood with a quick flick of her wrist and when Don saw her he had to do a double take. He'd seen that woman before he was sure of it. The Jedi tending to the wounded, she was an exact copy but what did it all mean?

"Has it come to play," Fiona asked him as she approached. "Fiona has been waiting for you. It's not nice to keep Fiona waiting."

She lashed the whip at him again and again locking the tip of it around the blade of Don Curhka's weapon on the second strike. She gave the whip one hearty tug but somehow Don managed to keep his grip on his lightsaber. One of the Brotherhood beside him moved to assist him but Fiona simply gestured with her hand and sent him sailing clear of the bridge with a gust of Force energy.

"Fiona will see its Brotherhood bleed," she said and she held out her left hand palm up and concentrated her will into it. A perfect sphere of electrical energy appeared above the palm of her hand and she reached back and threw it at Don Curhka. "Suffer and die," she screamed at him, forming a second ball of electricity even before the first one had struck its target.

User avatar
Shaggy
The Rev.
Posts: 4652
Joined: Mon Feb 17, 2003 8:09 am
Location: Back in the desert!!!

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Shaggy »

The Jedi had fought their way to the top of the nearest temple to them. Now while they stood at the top, while embedded in battle, Daer'Gunn knew they had picked the wrong one. There had been an explosion that was not the normal sounds of mortars and other sonic booms they had heard since they had started this battle. Daer'Gunn himself and blow a rather large hole in the wall to give them a firm exit if needed down the side of the temple. He turned to see the one of the inner most temples smoke and a black ship descending towards it. He cursed inwardly and turned to dispatch the Sith standing in front of the opening.

"Blaze, toss me the specs and watch my back." he called to the Mandalorian with the fiery red armor. He looked out across the battle field and caught glimpses of a small but ominous looking black ship sitting there. It had to be Sivter's, they were leaving or escaping, from his vantage point, Daer'Gunn couldn't tell. Either way, they were on the wrong temple. This angered the Jedi Master, he gathered the Force to him and projected another deafening roar, the Mandalorians had already turned down their incoming sounds and the Jedi had prepared themselves, the Sith however had not. The sound made some grab their ears, others were overcome by the amount of sensory items coming at them. Either way, Daer'Gunn played on the fact they everyone was tired enough to try and put up a defense against it. The Jedi and their allies had pulled themselves towards the exit and Daer'Gunn made a motion to Blaze again. The Mandalorian jumped out the exit and his jet pack flared to life. He pulled out something that had been strapped to his leg and aimed it at the hole he had just blown out from. He hoisted the concussion bomb launcher onto his shoulder and he heard Daer'Gunn over the coms yell for everyone to move. The second Blaze heard the call, he fired.

Blaze had salvaged a small torpedo launcher from a down Sith vessel the night before. There had been a concussion torpedo still lodged in it's tube ready to fire. He was a bomb expert and went to work on it immediately. He had successfully modified it so that it could fire the missile from a shoulder mounted launcher. As the missile streaked it's way across the sky, Daer'Gunn and the rest of his crew dove through the opening and were in a small free fall towards the ground. The explosion behind them was massive and pushed them faster towards the ground. The Mandos had already activated their own jet packs and they made sure that many of the grappling hooks were attached firmly. When the give in the line was fully extended, whoever was attached came to sudden stop. Daer'Gunn had shot his line directly into the side of the temple and when his massive body collided with the outside temple wall, he crushed many of the ancient bricks that helped stop his fall.

Some did not make it out in time, but they had all known the escape plan, Daer'Gunn could not feel sorry for them yet, now was not the time to mourn. He looked up to see the entire top portion where they were fighting, was gone, the torpedo did it's job. Now they needed to get on the ground and make their way to the rest of their allies. Daer'Gunn popped his should back into it's rightful place, using the pain to help strengthen his resolve. Once the rest were on the ground, they ran together towards the center temple, their allies would need some more backup.
“This is one of the miracles of love: It gives a power of seeing through its own enchantments and yet not being disenchanted.”
-C.S. Lewis
"But generally, Shaggy is right." - Jagtai
Daer'Gunn Wiki

User avatar
Halomek
Master of the Ninja Post
Posts: 8382
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2003 9:51 pm
Location: A galaxy far, far, away...

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Halomek »

Arksis was merciless. The Twi’lek gave no quarter and it was all Renato could do to keep from being sliced in half by the deadly strokes of the Dark Lord. Renato knew if he let his concentration slip for even a moment, he would end up as just one more of the many corpses Arksis had already littered the battlefield with. Renato was all too aware that his opponent embodied all of the worst aspects of the Dark Side. Arksis had slaughtered young children on Onderon without even the slightest hint of regret - children Renato had been tasked with guarding.

Children Renato had failed…

The memory burned inside him, driving him to give this fight his all, but Arksis was too well trained. The Dark Lord’s style had no easy openings to exploit and the ruthless and constant attacks didn’t give Renato room to try and strategize. The power behind the Twi’lek’s attacks was too strong for him to meet directly. Renato had to try and deflect the blows.

He had trained hard for this moment, but in truth Renato was finding that his survival hinged more upon his Force-sight than his skills with a lightsaber. It gave him a moment or two of precognition that allowed him to know where Arksis was going to attack next, which let him keep up with the much more experienced and skilled Dark Lord - if only barely.

It was ironic that a disability he could attribute directly to Arksis was now what was keeping him alive.

Just when Renato was starting to believe he might actually survive this duel, Arksis did something unexpected. As Renato met another of the Dark Lord’s blows with his lightsaber, Arksis suddenly slid the massive blade down sharply along the lightsaber’s length before cutting through the hilt in one smooth motion. It was all Renato could do to jump back and avoid having his fingers amputated as his weapon exploded with a small expulsion of energy.

“You’ve improved quite a bit since our last encounter, I’ll give you that,” Arksis said without apparent sign of exertion, “but that’s hardly praise. You were weak then and you’re still weak now. You cling to the Light Side like a child scared of his own shadow and you insist on hobbling yourself with an inferior weapon. My little maneuver was far less likely to have worked had you used the sword I gave you. Lightsabers are nothing but flashy toys.”

With a tilt of his head, Arksis indicated the weapon. “I see you brought it with you, but that you’re too much of a coward to use it.” He charged forward again. “If that’s the case, then it’s past time I reclaimed it!”

***

Crix was just finishing up with another group of opponents who had thought themselves a match for his power. The soldiers were all disposed of. The allied Brotherhood and Jedi warriors were all dead at his feet. All that remained was a single solitary mech that was frantically pouring everything it had at him in a desperate attempt to bring him down, but the Dark Lord would never be brought down in such a manner. Unlike so many others, almost the entirety of Crix’s great power was concentrated inward instead of outward.

With a sudden lunge, he tackled the mech and brought it crashing to the ground before smashing a massive fist through the cockpit area and turning the soldiers inside to a bloody pulp.

With his particular area of the battlefield cleared of all opponents, Crix turned his attention to the huge pyramid that had seemingly grown out of the middle of the city. That was were the majority of the fighting was going to take place now.

Without even a backward glance at the corpses he left behind, Crix made his way towards his new destination…

***

Clara spared a moment to stroke Sal’s head as she tried to sound reassuring. “We’ll do everything we can to get your mommy back, I promise, but right now we need to get Sis some medical attention or she’s going to die. You’ll be with one less aunt unless we take care of her now.”

If Sal replied to her, Clara wasn’t able to make it out as the whine of the Final Shot’s engines overwhelmed all noise as the ship passed through the clouds overhead and found a spot to set down. Clara smiled with relief at the sight. One of her private fears was that Tav would have been destroyed in the fighting taking place above the planet.

She didn’t waste any time dragging Isis over to the boarding ramp, but was a little surprised to see Faye coming up behind her with one of the dead insectoids. When Clara looked at her for explanation, the Jedi Master didn’t mince words. “I thought perhaps you might have more luck devising an anti-venom if you had one of the creatures to study. The Jedi could find it useful during future battles with these things.”

Clara frowned at the odd choice of Faye’s words as Tav appeared and grabbed Isis from her. “Don’t you mean you could find it useful?”

“It remains to be seen if I am destined to survive this battle,” she replied as she handed the Schrai to Clara. “It’s clear now that the Cult of Shadow held the advantage from the start. That advantage has only grown since. We’ve been outmaneuvered at every turn. Our chances of victory don’t appear likely and I won’t surrender.”

Clara set the Schrai aside and gave Faye a crisp military salute as a sign of respect. “You’re a true soldier, Warden. I’ll make sure it gets to the right people.”

“I believe you will.”

***

Even with Isis hooked up to the rather humble medical facilities aboard the Final Shot, her health still seemed to be deteriorating; albeit at a slower rate. There was nothing Clara wanted to do more than leave this awful place and find some proper help for her, but she had made a promise to pick up as many of the wounded as she could. Following Faye’s directions, Clara had Tav set the ship down near one of the initial Jedi landing zones.

She rushed out and entered one of the buildings to find a makeshift medical ward. Clara ran up to what appeared to be one of the chief healers, a white-haired female who seemed just a little too delicate to be on a battlefield, and tapped on her shoulder insistently.

“Master Ward asked me to load as many of the injured onto my ship as I can,” she explained. “I’m making a break out of here, so we need to be quick about it. Also, if you can spare of one your healers to come with, it’d be greatly appreciated.”

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

Don was annoyed at the pitiful darksider that stood before him, he had no time for games, he needed to get across the bridge and stop Sivter from gaining the Necromonus. The female darksider whipped her lightwhip at the Brotherhood in defiance as it was clear the darksider had no intentions of moving out of the way. Don got into his fighting stance as the darksider inched closer. Don knew that the darksiders were just pawns in Sivter’s game of deceit and deception, did these people even know they were throwing their lives away for nothing, for someone that cared nothing about them, how warped these peoples minds had to be for them to deliberately give their lives for a cause that sees all life destroyed if succeeded. People like this shouldn’t be allowed to live, shouldn’t live.

With a burst of Force energy, Don lunged forward in a flash as he initiated his first the first moves of his self made form of lightsaber combat. Don would blitz forward toward the opponent with a flurry of swipes and jabs at increasing rate of speed as defender would be forced backwards at the same time blocking countless strikes. At the moment, the darksider woman was able to keep up with Don’s attacks but as Don was getting faster in his attacks, the darksider began to show ware as she struggled to keep all the attacks away from her. One swipe came mere centimeters from the woman’s necks but only caught part of the collar, singeing that part of her clothing off. The Darksider woman thrust her whip forward forcing Don to back up, giving the woman enough time to send a large Force blast hurling toward him. Don in response jumped high into the air as the blast went under him. As Don was coming back down, he held his lightsaber with both hands as he dropped right on top of the female Cult of Shadow follower. The woman had a little time to react as she rolled to the side. Don landed on his feet but was quickly met with short spurts of red and black streaks of lightning as the Force blasts streaked by him. One of the blasts was absorbed by Don’s blade as he held it up in front of him to block the attack. After blocking the attack, Don rushed the female Cult member and as she whipped her lightwhip toward him, Don jumped into the air as he flipped and landed behind her, he had now as she did expect him to respond so quickly. As Don was about to stab the woman in the back with his lightsaber, a Cult Disciple charged at Don as he was the Cult side of the bridge. The Disciple’s attack forced Don to adjust to defend the attack; he turned from Fiona and swiped at the Disciple, blocking the potential fatal attack. Don moved away from Fiona as she crew angry for allow to be so careless, but Don wasn’t focus on her at the moment as he lunged forward with great speed, catching the Disciple by surprise as Don blade pierced through the Disciples through the thyroid and throat, and finally piercing through the spine at the back of the neck. The Disciple died immediately with a surprise forever burnt in his face.

As Don finished with the Disciple, he quickly turned his focus back to the Cult woman who was already whipping her lightwhip at Don. Don blocked the attack with his lightsaber but the lightwhip rapped around his blade and the woman yanking back sharply in hopes to rip the lightsaber from Don’s hand. The woman’s attempt to disarm him failed as he held a firm grip around his lightsaber hilt. Don simply shook his head at the woman as he yanked his blade downward with the whip still wrapped around his blade. The force that Don yanked the two blades sent the woman stumbled forward as she lost her grip on her lightwhip, Don moved in to strike the stumbling woman. Don had his right hand curled into a ball as he lunged forward toward the woman’s head. Don’s large fist smashed against the woman’s beautifully curved face as she fell to the side of where the force of the punch was heading, which was to the left of where Don was standing. The woman was clearly knocked out as Don picked the woman up by her neck. He lifted her up off the ground a few inched and was about to tossed her over the bridge when the unthinkable happened.

Everything was blurred out as a gut wrenching sound bellowed from the middle temple. The sound almost sounded light an air raid siren but more organic and deep. The sound was a warning as hell incarnate had just arrived to partake in the bloodshed. The large unwieldy creature ripped through the lower sanctums of the temple on the side of the deep cavern and was climbing its way up onto the temple. The monster was gigantic in size as it jumped into the air and landed onto the middle part of the large stone bridge. As it landed, it gave out another gut wrenching roar as it neared the coalition side of the bridge. Don dropped the cult woman as he gazed in astonishment at the ancient beast that lay before him.

“Sivter, you son of a bitch.” Don was mesmerized by the sight of the creature, but realization hit him quickly as he turned to his advancing forces. They couldn’t fight this beast head on, not on the bridge anyways. “TURN BACK, FALL BACK TO THE TEMPLE!” Don yell at the top of his lungs as he started back toward his end of the bridge.
Last edited by kashus_Draith on Mon Mar 08, 2010 12:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Pryde
Pryngles
Posts: 16863
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 2:11 am
Location: Earth

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Pryde »

After picking up John, Faye and the rest of their unit Herra's shuttlecraft hovered over the main central temple while Faye leaned over the pilot's shoulder and peered out the main viewport. From this vantage point she could see Daer'Gunn's unit rappelling down the far left temple on their way to where Don Curhka and the rest of his unit were already engaging the Sith forces. There was still plenty of hard fighting left to be had and even Don Curhka and his men would be in need of reinforcements eventually.

"Drop us down over--," she started and then a loud bellow erupted from the pit of the cavern left behind by the rising temple. The sound was so loud that it even drowned out the pilot's shocked surprise.

"What the hell is that thing," he exclaimed.

Faye's expression didn't change. "Take us down now," she ordered the pilot, "Don Curhka will need some help. After you drop of our unit take us back into the air."

"What are you planning to do," Herra asked her with a raised eyebrow.

"I'm going to stall Sivter as long as I can," she told her flatly then she turned to walk back into the cabin. As soon as she passed through the hatchway someone grabbed her arm.

"I'm not letting you go alone," John said to her. Faye watched him for a second, half tempted to refuse but the look in his eye told her he wouldn't listen either way.

Finally she nodded, "Very well, so long as you know what this means."

"I'm prepared to give my life if it means stopping the Cult from winning this fight."

She rested a hand gently on his shoulder then turned back to face the rest of her unit who had survived the fight at the base of the temple mere moments ago. "Don Curhka has engaged the Cult forces on the central bridge and is in need of reinforcements. We're all he has left so we're going to do what we can to help him. As soon as this shuttle lands I want everyone off of it and into the fight. Don Curhka must break through the Cult lines and reach the temple, otherwise all of our efforts will have been for nothing."

The soldiers mixed with Jedi nodded their heads in silence and waited patiently for their next battle. Without another word Faye spun around and went back into the cockpit just as the shuttle was settling down on the surface. The back doors opened and the combined Brotherhood and Jedi force stormed out of the shuttle and into the flight. Soon after the shuttle lifted off again heading for the central temple.

For a moment Faye briefly thought about having the pilot drop her off at the top of the temple but something about Sivter's actions thus far gave her pause for thought. There had to be a reason why he waited until now to activate the three temples. Before she could endanger either John or herself she would first need to find out what it was.

"Fly low over there and open the back hatch," she said, pointing to a spot a little ways up the side of the temple just ahead of Sivter and his crew. The pilot nodded his confirmation and did as he was told. As he made his low pass over the bridge he took a couple of glancing shots from the Schrai and droid fighters still left in the air but somehow managed to keep the shuttle on target. The back hatch opened up and Faye and John both dropped down onto the bridge just before the Brotherhood shuttle tilted its nose up and headed for space. It didn't get far, though, before an entourage of Schrai broke away from Sivter and followed it. After the two Jedi had landed they both ignited their weapons and turned to face Sivter.

"Release the girl, Sivter, and end this foolish crusade," Faye ordered him, knowing full well that the Cult master would do neither. He'd been in control of this entire fight and had clairvoyance enough to know that for fact. Even now she was sure he had some trick up his sleeve that he was waiting to unleash but she had already fallen for his trap, whatever it was and all she could do now was spring it and hope for the best.

"Keep your eyes open and wait for them to make the first move," she whispered quietly to John, "Don't attack recklessly, we're not here to kill him and end this war. We only need to slow him down."

User avatar
Pryde
Pryngles
Posts: 16863
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 2:11 am
Location: Earth

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Pryde »

"Take these two," one of the chief Brotherhood healers said as he came up to stand beside Clara. He had one hand rested on Ana's shoulder and gestured to Arilyn with the other. "Together their skills have been invaluable to us, I'm sure they'll be of use to you as well."

Clara nodded then half turned back to the door. "Alright, then let's get these people moving."

The man nodded then glanced back over his shoulder at the people working behind him and shouted out a series of orders. Each available doctor tending to the wounded helped to carry as many as they could safely move onto Clara's ship. Arilyn and Ana both helped as much as they could and when they could fit no more they both found themselves in the Final Shot's medical ward.

"What's happened to her," Arilyn asked as she looked over Isis' body.

"Poisoned by those things," Clara answered, gesturing towards the dead Schrai on the table.

Arilyn looked at it then back at Isis. She didn't have the tools necessary to concoct an anti-venom but she could at least try and slow the poison and restore some of Isis' strength. "I'll do what I can for her from here, but we'll need to get her to my Master as fast as possible."

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

John and Faye kept their distance from Sivter as John quickly turned to look at the blond hair woman on the ground just beyond Sivter. John’s eyes widened but did say anything at first.

“Just let the girl go, Sivter. You don’t need her. I’m sure whatever you have planned you don’t need her.” John almost pleadingly replied. He knew if Sivter was allowed to take the girl, John would never forgive himself. After saying that, he turned to Faye and said, “I don’t know how much we can actually stall this chutta but if we are, we’re going to have to be smart about it.”

Another person with Sivter caught his eye, a thinly figured Sephi, who seemed to be intensely focused on the battle raging down on the bridge. John narrowed his eyes at the Sephi and then at the monster. What is this guy doing? John said to himself. The Arcadian offshoot did not flinch or respond to Faye's and his presences when they arrived. As John thought about it, he ruled out possibilities but he kept coming up with one. John knew the monster was an ancient Leviathan, so he figured that the monster had to be control by someone. It was obvious that Sivter wasn't controlling the beast, so it must be the Sephi. John turned back to Faye and whispered.

"I think pointy ears over there, is controlling that Leviathan, Faye."

"How can you be sure?" Faye asked.

"I have a hunch, but if we can take out that guy, it might be the delay we are looking for." John replied as some of the Schrai sentries flew up into the air toward the Brotherhood ship circling the battle raging on the bridge.

User avatar
Halomek
Master of the Ninja Post
Posts: 8382
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2003 9:51 pm
Location: A galaxy far, far, away...

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Halomek »

To the surprise of Faye and John, Sivter shrugged in apparent compliance as he let go of Raven. “I’ve finished with her.” He glanced over at the Padawan. “Haven’t I, Raven? You know what needs to be done now.”

***

“Fast I can do,” Clara assured Arilyn. “Just keep Sis alive until we get to Onderon.”

Moments later the Final Shot had lifted back off the ground and was rushing towards space at full throttle. Clara didn’t say anything as she entered the bridge, figuring that Tav could use every bit of his concentration to keep them from being blown apart. True to Clara’s secret worries, a swarm of the fighter drones fell upon the gunship as soon as it broke from the atmosphere.

Her fingers dug into the arm rests of her chair as Tav put the Final Shot through maneuvers its designers never envisioned it capable of. The guns swiveled and fired at the pursuing starfighters with an unnerving accuracy that forced Clara to alter her estimation of Tav’s skills up another notch. Piloting a ship the size of the Final Shot the way Tav was doing was impressive enough, but taking out enemy starfighters at the same time with so few wasted shots was unbelievable. Clara was almost willing to bet Quex was responsible, but apparently the droid was busy managing the ship’s systems and prepping the hyperspace vectors.

As soon as they passed beyond the limit of Necroa Prime’s gravity well, Tav pressed the levers to send the ship hurtling through a micro-jump to get them beyond the range of the jamming signal. Clara forced herself to expel a breath she didn’t know she had been holding as the ship almost immediately reverted back to realspace, albeit well outside of the solar system.

“Dropping the automated distress beacon now,” Tav reported as he punched in a few buttons. The beacon had been calibrated to send out an SOS through the com channels the Jedi generally used. Hopefully the call for reinforcements would reach Onderon before they did.

Only after Tav had them back in hyperspace towards Onderon did Clara dare to speak. Despite the odds against such an escape, they had made it. “I have to admit, I’m impressed. What’s your secret, Ace? How can you pilot a ship the size of my baby so well and still be so good targeting the weapons from the bridge?”

Tav swiveled in his chair to face her. He looked reluctant to answer her. “Well, the truth is that I didn’t do both.”

“So Quex really was handling it?”

He shook his head. “Quex is good, but he’s not that good. Manual control is the only way to get accuracy like that. I put someone up in the gunwell. I figured that was the best chance I had at surviving this thing.”

Clara was mystified. “Well who-” She stopped as realization dawned on her. “You didn’t… Are you insane!?” Clara rushed off the bridge with Tav close on her heels. “How could you let her out!?”

“She’s not our enemy anymore,” Tav explained. “I felt it was worth the gamble.”

Clara just held a hand up to put an end to the argument as she stopped at the stairwell to see Micaiah making her way down. “Your parole has been revoked, Mudcrutch, now get back to your cell.”

User avatar
Pryde
Pryngles
Posts: 16863
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 2:11 am
Location: Earth

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Pryde »

Faye shifted her stance slightly and pointed her lightsaber at Raven. She hadn't expected Sivter to give in so easily which meant something was wrong. Raven was definitely not acting like herself but Faye had yet to figure out what it all meant. Sivter, you monster, she thought angrily to herself as she wondered what exactly he had done to the young padawan.

With concern clearly visible in his eyes John edged forward a bit but was stopped by a firm hand on his shoulder. He looked at Faye and she shook her head. "Let's just wait a moment," she whispered quietly to him.

Something isn't right about her...

User avatar
TalRaimi
'Will finish a thread one day…'
Posts: 1202
Joined: Sun Feb 16, 2003 1:35 am
Location: The Uncharted Territories
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by TalRaimi »

The ancient overgrown streets were quiet now. With the sudden arrival of the forth pyramid in the centre of the Sith city, the fighting had shifted focus, leaving Ehlana Voss and her lone Mandalorian protector the solitary occupants of this section of the city. At least she dared hope that was the case.

And there was the problem.

Hope.

She had resigned herself to die. She had found a strange comfort in knowing her inevitable, immediate future; a future that had once more shifted, becoming cloudy and uncertain. She had felt the earth's sudden shift, watched as the giant pyramid rose from its depths, and felt the faint spark of hope within her rekindle as she'd seen a large flock of Schrai heading to the new Temple. With the Schrai's departure a path back to the Jedi landing zone had been reopened.

Frell it.

It felt like the Force was toying with her. Would this nightmare never end?

"What now Jedi Voss?"

Ehlana turned to regard the emotionless Mandalorian visor. His voice, distorted as it was by his helmet mic gave nothing away, although she suspected that the face underneath was just as stoic. What would he think of her if she turned back now? And when had the respect of this Mandalorian come to matter to her?

"Your opinion?" she stalled, fighting to keep her voice natural.

"There is now the possibility of a retreat back to the staging area. We are likely to meet little resistance. If we head onwards towards the Great Temple we will either encounter our allies or more of the enemy."

Ehlana glared at him. "I well know our options, I asked for your opinion."

"I would go forward."

Forward unto dawn. To seek a glorious death. Ehlana found herself chewing on her lip, considering her options. Surely to press onwards would be madness? The sensible thing would be to turn back, retreat to the landing field and to regroup or flee this deathtrap. Yet why then was she considering the other? Why throw her life away so needlessly?

She gave a mental shrug. Perhaps she longed for the certainly that such a path would yield. Perhaps she now understood something of the Mandalorian's lust of battle. Or perhaps she simply didn't want to see the disappointment in her Mandalorian's body language when she made the obvious choice. Whatever the reason she knew herself for a fool; yet she could not damn herself for such a choice.

"We go forward," she decided.
'Would you do it with me, heal the scars and change the stars?'

User avatar
Mir
KING OF STRONG STYLE
Posts: 18594
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2006 5:43 pm

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Mir »

Renato was at a crossroads. He didn't want to use the sword. He brought it with him at all times, but that didn't mean that he wanted to use it. He didn't trust himself with it, and he didn't think that he was ready to wield it. But his lightsaber had been destroyed. It was cut into two pieces, and the casings had dropped to the ground. He could see the wiring everywhere, and the power cell and other components lying dormant. Last but not least, the crystal that had given the blade its potent strength. Anger coursed through him, an anger that he clamped down on as best as he could. He had not built the blade, and that was what made it that much more upsetting. It had been a gift to him by his master, Daer'Gunn. It had been given to him for his own use and for his safekeeping. Losing it, allowing it to be destroyed made him feel as though he had betrayed his master's teachings and his master's trust. He stumbled backwards as Arksis moved forward. The Force told him what Arksis was going to do, but he couldn't will his body to move, still in shock from what had happened.

The Force aided him there too, moving him out of the way just before Arksis' lunge would have impaled him. In that split second, as Necroban slid through his robes, coming dangerously close to slicing through bare flesh, Renato looked down at what the sword was doing to him. He couldn't "see" what was going on, per se, but the Force sight gave him a view of the world that many were never blessed to see. He had thought the blinding a curse, but right then, he saw it as a blessing.

He could see his reflection in the black blade, and he saw a boy whose transition into a man was almost complete. He saw that he had power that Arksis couldn't see and that he hadn't himself. He doubted himself, not for the reasons that Akain did, but in a different sense. He doubted himself because he had always been told that he wasn't good enough. Akain had been told that he needed to be good enough and the Nagai had taken this to believe that he wasn't. Renato on the other hand, had been told that he wasn't good enough by his father for so long that it had become ingrained.

He doubted his ability to properly handle the Force and to properly handle the Sith Sword not because he truly couldn't, but because he had been conditioned to believe it. He doubted his ability to defend Tone and to be what she needed because he had been conditioned to believe it. But that was going to change. And it did, in that split second. Not completely, not fully, no. But a step had been taken, a step that made Renato more powerful and stronger than many had thought he could become.

Time had seemingly slowed, but now, now it sped up. He reached behind him and pulled the sword from the sheath on his back. He brought it up and then down and then to the right. The flat edge hit Arksis in the back, forcing him forward a few steps. As the Twi'lek recovered and turned, Renato completed the motion in a spin and dropped into a ready stance. "This ends now." He said, beckoning Arksis to come at him.

User avatar
Halomek
Master of the Ninja Post
Posts: 8382
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2003 9:51 pm
Location: A galaxy far, far, away...

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Halomek »

“That would be true if I was dead,” Arksis retorted. “Again, you weaken yourself. You should have used that surge of power to keep me off-guard, but instead you draw back as if you suddenly have control of the fight. Never show your opponent mercy.”

Arksis began moving to the side, a movement Renato mirrored as the two began to slowly circle each other. “The sword is an improvement, but it can only aid you so much if you cling to the Light Side,” the Twi’lek continued. “You’ve found more power, this much is true, but you are still just a Padawan and I - I am a Dark Lord of the Inner Circle. Without the Dark Side, you are nothing compared to me.”

The aura of power around Arksis intensified as he spoke, assaulting Renato’s senses as it reached new magnitudes; battering him with its overwhelming presence. “I’ve been fighting you at your level, because fighting you at mine, as you were, would have given me no satisfaction. This would have been over too quickly for me to feel it was worth keeping you alive back on Onderon – let alone giving you my sword.”

The Dark Lord pointed the tip of Necroban at Renato challengingly. “So, please, do your best to end this. Make me eat my words, if you can.”

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

John was puzzled by Raven’s look; it almost seemed as if she wasn’t all there. John took a step back and tightened his grip around his lightsaber. Raven’s head lilted to side and gave a blank stare at both, Faye and John as she lunged forward with one hand extended toward both of them and the other with an ignited lightsaber blade coming up in a sweeping motion towards John’s head. The Force push was directed at Faye who dodged the attack, but Faye was forced to split from John as she jumped a few steps down the pyramid, while John was forced block the attack. Raven came up with another attack but this time it was high, John raised his blade to block the attack. Their lightsabers clashed together as Raven’s sent another Force push, this time it hit John in the abdomen sending him a few meters backwards.

When John came to after being flung to his back, he saw that Raven had relinquished her assault on John and was heading further up the pyramid. As John jump to his feet, he looked further down the pyramid and saw Faye, she was alright, and then looked up and saw Raven. John knew it wouldn’t be a great idea to split up now, when they were the only ones at the pyramid, but he knew Raven was being controlled and that she was heading for the Necromonus. John didn’t think about it, he knew what he had to do, stop the Cult of Shadow from obtaining the Necromonus at all cost. So John started after Raven, in hopes to stop her from gaining the Necromonus. Duty above everything else, John was told, it was the Brotherhood way.

As John made it up the pyramid he wasn’t stopped by any of the Schrai or darksiders present on the ancient Sith pyramid, which John thought was odd, but he wouldn’t question the opportunity. It didn’t take John long to catch up to Raven as she was already halfway up the pyramid by the time John got to her.

“Raven!” John yelled at her. “It’s me, John. Don’t you remember me?”

Raven stopped in her tracks and turned to face John, she attacked him with a low swipe from her lightsaber. John immediately dodged the attack and got into a defensive pose as Raven came up for another attack. Raven swiped again while John deflected it. John didn’t counter after the attack, he knew this was Sivter’s plan, he knew he couldn’t harm her, not even if his life depended on it, but John was going to have to subdue her one way or another without killing her.

“Raven?!” John glanced down the pyramid and saw that he was a good distance from Faye to where she couldn’t hear what he was about to say. “Alicia! It’s me, John Gattoh, Alexander Cain's best friend, your brother. We grew up together on the Citadel.” Raven was almost like in a trance as she prepared for another attack. “I know you can hear me, Alicia, you have to fight this. You have to fight Sivter.” Raven or rather Alicia lunged forward as she swiped at John. John simply defended the attacks as they came right after another. John couldn’t find the heart to attack, but he knew if he kept this up, he would surely die.

Sorry about this Alicia, but you give me no choice.

John batted Alicia’s lightsaber out of the way and raised his hand toward Alicia’s chest and sent a Force push into her, sending her crashing to the ground. Amazengly, Alicia got right back up, but this time with fire in her eyes as she charged and jumped toward him. As she came down, the blow against John’s lightsaber was amplified by the force she came down on with the drop attack. The attack sent John stumbling backwards. As he stumbled backwards, a piece of the pyramid gave way from John’s weight, which sent him falling to the next step down. The fall was a good four feet down as John landing on his back. Winced in pain as his earlier wounds he obtained ached from the sudden fall, but as John was about to get back up, Raven jumped down from the stop and drove her lightsaber straight through John’s Acolyte ‘s right breast and shoulder plate and right into the stone step under him. John would have yelled out in pain but he lost his voice as winced at the idea of the damage he had sustained and who had caused it. The lightsaber burnt through nerve endings, muscle, bone, and burnt a hole on the edge of John’s right lung, which caused him to lose his voice. As Raven yanked the blade out from John’s shoulder, she stepped back and Force grabbed him, and slung him down the pyramid. John flew halfway down between where Faye was and where Raven was standing pyramid. John was in great amount of pain as he rolled to his side as he struggled for air, his right lung collapsed when he hit the pyramid.

Dammit!

As John laid there he began to focus on his lung, he knew a little bit about Force healing so he started on his lung. After a couple of minutes, John had re-inflated his lung with the assistance from the Force and had gotten back to his feet. John clenched his jaw tight as he braced his wounded arm. After standing he retrieved his lightsaber that had fallen from his grasp after he had been flown and started making his way back up the pyramid to where Raven was at.

User avatar
Pryde
Pryngles
Posts: 16863
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 2:11 am
Location: Earth

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Pryde »

So this was the trick Sivter had planned, the ace up his sleeve. Stopping Raven from reaching the Necromonus was all that mattered now but it was up to John to succeed at this task alone. Sivter would not allow Faye to help him and even before she could move up the pyramid to assist he launched a devastating attack at her. Faye had only barely managed to put up a Force Wall for protection but the impact of the attack was still strong enough to stagger her. Sivter was on top of her in seconds after that with his weapon in his hand. Reacting quickly Faye somehow managed to get out of the way and put a bit of distance between her and the Defel. Sivter wasn't about to let her escape that easily, however, and continued his pursuit of her.

To Faye's credit she was incredibly nimble and she used her flexibility and agility to great effect, dodging Sivter's attacks when others would have parried instead. This allowed her to counter attack more effectively, but Sivter's skill with a blade was a close match for her own and his strength in the Force far greater. At best she could survive for a few minutes and at worse she would be dead in seconds. It wasn't the most ideal of situations but the Jedi Master was determined to make do as best she could and maybe give as good as she got.

She fought quite well with a single bladed weapon though her preferred style of combat was with the Qinata. The unusual way she wielded her lightsaber, however, was often enough to throw a lesser opponent off guard but it wouldn't matter to an experienced warrior like Sivter. Every attack he launched at her was parried low against his blade near the hilt of his weapon, close enough for Faye's lightsaber to actually singe the hairs on the back of Sivter's hand. Similarly all her attacks were directed at his wrist with the goal being to disarm her opponent then finish him off, though she knew that would never work against Sivter.

"So this is how you would see the galaxy burn," she said during a brief respite in the duel. "What's next? What will you do with yourself when everyone in the galaxy is either dead or groveling at your feet?"

User avatar
Halomek
Master of the Ninja Post
Posts: 8382
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2003 9:51 pm
Location: A galaxy far, far, away...

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Halomek »

“You lack vision, Ward,” Sivter replied. “It’s something I’ve come to expect from my opponents. I’m different from all those self-styled Darksiders who focus only on empire-building. They too lack vision. This war isn’t about my power, it’s about ending this tired conflict between the Light and the Dark once and for all!”

Faye looked at him warily, curious despite herself. “How do you expect to do that? Not even the Necromonus can grant you that kind of power.”

Sivter actually grinned. “So there is some semblance of intelligence there, good, though I doubt you can appreciate the full scope of my plans. The Necromonus is only a tool, a powerful tool, but a tool nonetheless. It’s no guarantee of victory. I have something far greater in the works.”

Faye felt her mouth go dry. If she could keep Sivter talking, perhaps he would slip up and reveal something the Jedi could use against him. “And what could that possibly be?”

Sivter laughed; a harsh rasp. “I’m almost tempted enough to tell you, since there’s no way you’ll be able to stop it, but I didn’t get this far by taking unnecessary chances. I would say that you’ll find out in due time, but we both know you’ll never leave here alive.”

Faye readied her weapon and charged forward. “It doesn’t matter if I die here. If I can take you out now, the war is over. I will give my life to make that happen if I must!”

“You’ll give your life,” Sivter agreed as he raised a hand and unleashed a powerful blast of lightning.

Faye skidded to a stop and brought the energy blade up to absorb the blast, but the lightning didn’t follow a straight path. It abruptly curved and arced around the weapon before striking her from behind...

User avatar
Mir
KING OF STRONG STYLE
Posts: 18594
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2006 5:43 pm

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Mir »

Renato would have narrowed his eyes if he could have. But the amn in front of him was the reason why he couldn't do that. He remembered then, what had casued him to be in the state that he was. He remembered the younglings that he had tried to protect and had failed and more importantly, the younglings who had died.0sdfhe (One of my kittens says hi. This one is rooting for Sivter by the2823jfsd way.)) Anger coursed through him as he realized that Arksis had been making a fool of him this entire time. Anger that this was what the Sith Lord did, that he used trickery and deception and that he could not fight with some semblance of honor. He attacked then, his anger making his focus snap away instead of honing in stronger. His movements were beginning to be come more erratic again, but the power behind them was increasing. Arksis could sense that Renato was losing his focus with each step and each attack.

It made the fight that much sweeter.

The Jedi Padawan made a feint to his left, making it appear that he was going to make a stab for Arksis' right leg. The Twi'lek took a step backwards in anticipation, not seeing Renato's right hand reach up. He summoned the Force and let a blast of energy go, knocking Arksis back. Renato paused then, noting that Nan didn't fly back as far as he would have thought he would was going to. He wasn't sure what to make of it, he didn't even begin to think of what the true answer was. He simply chalked it up to Arksis anticipating his movements just as well as he was seeing the Twi'lek's. Either way, he knew he needed to do something here to try to tip the scales in his favor once more.

The problem was that he wasn't sure what exactly to do. He had tried everything that he could think of, short of giving into to Nan's attempts to sway him to the dark side. That he would never do, but the Twi'lek had a point. The dark side would give him the power that he needed to fully defeat the man. But was it worth it? Was a temporary lapse of judgment worth achieving the justice that Arksis deserved? Could he rationalize it out?

As Renato moved forward once more to try to keep up the pressure and keep Arksis on the defensive, he worried that maybe Arksis would lose the battle, but win the war.

User avatar
Pryde
Pryngles
Posts: 16863
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 2:11 am
Location: Earth

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Pryde »

The lightning blast struck her and launched her forward. She fell flat on her face on the bridge and lay still for a moment. Sivter, thinking it was already over, approached her warily but he drew up short when she started to stir. With a great deal of effort Faye forced herself back up to her feet, fully aware that some time after she was struck by the lightning she had lost her grip on her lightsaber. She couldn't very well call it to her hand now, knowing it must have slipped off the bridge and out of reach.

Sivter smiled at this turn of events. "Admirable to continue to resist without a weapon but ultimately foolish."

"I don't need a weapon," Faye spat between gritted teeth and suddenly she launched herself forward. With one hand balled into a fist she struck at Sivter's face only to miss as the dark sider stepped to the side. He swung his lightsaber at her but she ducked, pivoted on her right heel and buried her fist into Sivter's gut doubling him over. She followed it with an upper cut that sent him staggering backwards and would have pursued him if a sudden spark of pain from the burns on her back hadn't stopped her.

Sivter took the time to recover and charged at her again intent on ending this duel. His first attack missed, however, followed by his second as Faye nimbly stepped out of the way of each. In spite of her injuries she was still faster but even she knew she couldn't keep this up forever. Even now her defense was beginning to slow as fatigue and the pain from her injury took effect, giving Sivter time to capitalize on it. He managed to graze her right thigh with a narrow miss and almost succeeded in taking off her left arm but Faye somehow managed to get out of the way just in time but not before Sivter's weapon burned a mark on her arm.

She took a step back from him, her uninjured arm cradling the injured one. Sivter knew she was finished now and raised his lightsaber up for another attack. As he brought the weapon down Faye stepped to the side and grabbed onto his wrist, trying to wrest the weapon free from his hand. Sivter was prepared for this and sent another blast of Force energy into her chest with his free hand. The impact sent her sailing clear of the bridge though somehow she had managed to grab onto the ledge before she fell and as she dangled there over the chasm left behind by the rising temple Sivter loomed over her with a vicious smile. She tried to climb onto the bridge again but as soon as she tried to move her right leg the pain from her injury nearly caused her to lose her grip.

"And so it ends," Sivter said as he raised his weapon again.

If Faye was going to survive this then now was her only chance. Before Sivter could cut off her fingers and send her falling to her death she summoned up what strength she could and launched herself up over his head with a little help from the Force. Unfortunately, her landing left much to be desired and as soon as her feet struck the ground she stumbled and fell. She tried to scramble back up to standing but only managed to turn towards Sivter and scoot herself backwards a few inches. The Defel stalked towards her again but he was suddenly met with an invisible wall, or rather a sphere. Desperate to do whatever she could she trapped the Cult master in a protection Bubble where the majority of his spells would be too dangerous for him to use. It was a temporary solution at best but with luck she might be able to sustain it just long enough for the others to arrive...

User avatar
TalRaimi
'Will finish a thread one day…'
Posts: 1202
Joined: Sun Feb 16, 2003 1:35 am
Location: The Uncharted Territories
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by TalRaimi »

It was the smell that warned Ehlana what lay around the corner. The cloying metallic tang of blood hung heavy in the air, so thick she could almost taste it. She glanced briefly to the Mandalorian at her side; if he noticed the smell he gave no sign. Either his helmet filtered it out, or more than likely he was simply inured to it. Taking a deep breath and steeling herself as best she could, Ehlana stepped round the corner.

A large cross roads lay ahead, bodies scattered across it like rag dolls, the rust coloured paving stones now stained a deeper shade of red. Despite still being in her teenage years, Ehlana Voss had seen her share of suffering, dead bodies were nothing new to her, yet the sheer carnage that was spread before her made her retch. She turned away, unable to take in scene, but the smell still lingered.

“This is something new,” the as yet, unnamed Mandalorian said dispassionately from beside her. "While formidable, the Schrai we have met would struggle to deliver such carnage, even in number. Something else did this.”

Ehlana barely heard him; she was focused on keeping the meagre contents of her stomach where they belonged. Breath, damn it! She chided herself. You’re a Jedi, not some wet behind the ears Padawan. She closed her eyes for a moment, felt the Force seeping through her, slowing her breathing, calming her nerves and steadying her. When she looked back at the crossroads the sight still horrified her but she was able to deal with it.

At least two dozen men and woman lay dead here. Brootherhood Hoplites and Mandalorians alike; even an odd lightsaber lay here and there. Not a single body was whole. Limbs were scattered across the crossroads like confetti, heads sat on the paving stones; wide eyes starting sightlessly into space. The bodies had been chopped to shreds, blood, flesh, and bits of armour littered the crossroads.

“A cutting weapon.”

“What?” Ehlana started, realising she had been starting open mouthed at the carnage for at least a full minute.

“This soldier,” the Mandalorian held up the remains of an armoured breastplate that had been cut in two, “he was killed by a slashing weapon; an incredibly sharp slashing weapon.”

“Okay,” Ehlana mumbled, wishing she could be so analytical about the death of these men and woman. In this single day, Ehlana had witnessed more death and destruction than in the whole of her young life.

“And this one,” the Mandalorian pointed to another body, “Crushed. What breed of thing could do this?”

Ehlana shrugged. Whatever it was she did not want to meet it. Dying was one thing, she was all but certain that now that she had decided to continue forward that her life was no longer her own, but to die like this?

She shivered.

“I hope to meet this adversary,” the Mandalorian declared. “It will be a worthy foe.”

Ehlana started to laugh. She couldn’t help it; all the fear, all the horror and uncertainly of the last few hours came welling up and burst from her like a ruptured damn. She started laughing harder, the sound harsh and bitter to her ears, but she couldn't stop.

Finally she brought herself under control once more and found the Mandalorian staring at her. “No wonder your people almost conquered the galaxy once,” she said by way of explanation.

The Mandalorian nodded as if her answer made perfect sense to him. Then he froze as the sound of clawed feet on rubble echoed from one of the side streets. Ehlana reached out through the Force and immediately spun to her right. Emerging from a small alleyway was a creature she hadn’t seen before; it looked vaguely like the Schrai they’d faced before, only slightly bigger. It was wingless, and instead of the three fingered claws, one arm was a massive serrated blade and the other a large wicked looked pincer.

Ehlana looked at the Mandalorian and grinned. “Be careful what you wish for…”
'Would you do it with me, heal the scars and change the stars?'

User avatar
Halomek
Master of the Ninja Post
Posts: 8382
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2003 9:51 pm
Location: A galaxy far, far, away...

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Halomek »

The duel between Renato and Arksis was undeniably nearing the end point and the outcome didn’t look promising for the Jedi. While he had trained for this moment, Renato didn’t have the experience, the power, or the sheer stamina that Arksis did. The Padawan was getting slower as exhaustion crept upon him and both combatants knew it.

The end came when a desperate Renato attempted a lunge that was slower than he intended. Arksis sidestepped it easily and then smashed the pommel of his sword against the back of Renato’s skull. For an extra measure, the Dark Lord then brought up a knee into Renato’s gut as the Jedi was falling to knock the wind out of him before sending him flying back with a push from the Force. Renato landed against a pile of rubble, coughing in pain as he tried to recover and get back up.

The Twi’lek regarded his fallen opponent with something as close to pity as he was capable of. He used the Force to call the sword Renato had been using to his other hand. “And so my little experiment ends in disappointment,” Arksis said as he approached. “You provided some diversion, but in the end, you proved only that I should have stayed just long enough to kill you back on Onderon. I should have known better than to foster a weakling.” He raised Necroban to deliver a killing blow. “I’ll fix that mistake now.”

As Arksis brought the sword down, his blow was stopped as an insectoid hand gripped him at the wrist. He turned to see one of the Schrai staring at him. It spoke with a rough approximation of Sivter’s voice. “You’re giving up too easily, Arksis.” The Schrai looked over at Renato. “This one is close, he just needs the right motivation. Go to Froswythe and you’ll find what you need.”

Arksis roughly broke the Schrai’s grip. “I don’t care for these games.”

“And yet you’re the one who started this one,” the Schrai as Sivter countered. “Now you’re going to finish it properly. Spread the Dark Side.”

Arksis growled before nodding. “As you wish, my Lord.” He looked over at Renato before flinging the sword he had recovered back at his downed opponent. The blade impacted next to Renato’s head, knicking his ear. “That’s twice you’ve been spared by the orders of the Dark Master. You had best make it worthwhile!”

The Dark Lord then departed as he headed for his ship. The Schrai flew off as well. Renato was left alone with a terrible realization of what was in store at Froswythe. He tried to get up, but his body refused to respond. All he could do was call for help through the Force before he lost all consciousness.

***

Rather than try to charge forward, or unleash some powerful attack to break his prison, Sivter simply ran a clawed hand against the surface of Faye’s bubble, studying it. “I’ll concede this much to you, Ward: you might not be the equal of Tulsar Leidias when it comes to a fight, but at least you employ more interesting techniques than he does. Putting me inside the bubble instead of protecting yourself is also more innovative than I would have given an uncharismatic bore like you credit for.” He smiled then, showing no sign of distress at apparently being trapped. “Of course you must realize this will never last.”

Faye gritted her teeth. “It doesn’t have to. Once my allies make it past your Leviathan, you’re finished. I can hold you here for that long.”

Sivter shook his head condescendingly. “You misunderstand, Jedi. Someone like you will never hold someone like me with this. Protection bubbles are only effective against physical power and unlike you, that has never been my preferred specialty.”

Before Faye could ask what Sivter meant, she felt a sudden blast of intense pain course throughout her entire body. Faye cried out as her vision went white with starbursts of nerve-fraying waves of agony before it mercifully ended just as abruptly. As Faye struggled to recover from whatever had hit her, she realized just a little too late that she had lost her concentration. The bubble was gone. Sivter was free once again.

Her vision cleared just in time for Faye to feel her body gripped in a vice of incredible power and lifted off the ground. Sivter stood before her, one hand stretched out towards her. “That’s an old favorite of mine that I call the pain spike,” he explained. “It’s a manipulation of the portion of your brain that controls feeling. You might be an impressive warrior, Ward, but your mind is no match for mine.”

Faye struggled to break free of Sivter’s grasp, but found she could barely move. The battle across Necroa Prime had taken its toll on her and Sivter was more powerful than she could have guessed. She had used up most of her reserves by trying to trap Sivter within the protection bubble. She had nothing left.

With a deep calming breath, Faye relaxed and looked Sivter in the eyes. She had no fear. “Death is just the next step in the journey. Finish it.”

The Defel laughed. “Not quite yet, I still owe you for those blows you gave me earlier.” Faye was then roughly slammed into rock wall of the temple with crushing force. “Once for the gut,” Sivter said with a cackle before lifting her out and slamming her back in again. “And once more for the face.”

Bloodied and broken, Faye nevertheless still managed to maintain consciousness. With the last of her waning strength she spat blood in Sivter’s direction, who simply used the Force to send it flying back at her.

He chuckled as he brought Faye in closer. “Still so much spirit? I am impressed. In recognition of your strength, I’ll let you in on a secret I uncovered today that you might be interested in. If you survive, I would make it a point to find out just how trustworthy your new allies really are.” Sivter smiled cruelly and added once more for emphasis: “If you survive.”

Then with a backward toss, Faye was sent flying through the air like a ragdoll towards the massive form of the Leviathan keeping the rest of the Brotherhood and the Jedi from interfering. Sivter didn’t bother to look back as he ascended the steps to meet back up with Raven…

User avatar
Shaggy
The Rev.
Posts: 4652
Joined: Mon Feb 17, 2003 8:09 am
Location: Back in the desert!!!

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Shaggy »

The battle was not going well for the Jedi and their allies. By now, a large portion of their group on the planet was either injured or on their way to become one with the Force. Daer'Gunn and his small battalion were almost to the temple when he felt Renato call for help through the Force, he was about to turn towards his former padawan's presence when something caught his attention. He turned back towards the the main temple and he could feel Master Faye. Her presence in the Force grew to a bright white as if she had pumped a large portion of her Force power into one specific spot then as suddenly as her presence became bright, it then turned dark. Daer'Gunn knew she was in trouble and he needed to get to her quickly. With the coms still being jammed, he decided to make a bold move. Calling over to Blaze he said,

"I have a comrade in desperate need of help, we have this small spot covered. I need you and you best commando with me now."

"today is good day for more for them to die. Jen'Sara you are with me." The Mandalorian called through his voice processor. A tall female in yellow and green armor turned and was over to them in a couple of strides. She nodded at the Jedi Master and Daer'Gunn smiled, this might actually work.

"I need both of your grappling hooks, one of you might not be able to carry me but I know you both can. You see the central temple? I need to get there now." He didn't even both to ask if they could do it. Since it was probably something that had never been tried, the two would do what they can just to say that they were the ones who did it first. They each took their grappling hooks and attached them to the Jedi Master, once the secure sign was given both of them looked towards the sky. The trust alone was enough to make Daer'Gunn feel like he was getting ripped in half but he used the Force to right himself against the force of the acceleration. He kept his eyes trained on the temple as the two commandos continued to accelerate. They dodged mortar fire coming at them and blaze called back to his sniper team telling them to cover the trio.

The flight was anything but smooth but Daer'Gunn continued to use the Force to right himself in the air. He also batted away blaster fire that started to pour their way. Suddenly he felt it. Something had happened to Faye and her consciousness was wavering but she seemed to be coming closer to them. The female commando pointed at something and said,

"Something is incoming, beta quadrant, thirty degrees. It's alive, barely."

Daer'Gunn and Blaze both trained in on the object. Daer'Gunn knew it at once it was Faye.

"I need to get as close to her as possible, then I am going to cut loose." Daer'Gunn had an idea but he also knew that the two could not carry the extra weight and be able to dodge incoming fire. The Mando's nodded and their thrusters came to one hundred percent thrust and as they propelled themselves forward. Building speed as they did they came to a point where Daer'Gunn felt the Force's nudge and he cut the lines sending him flying away from his two escorts. He felt the air rushing by him and he was being propelled through the air like a boulder. He once again picked up Faye with his visual senses and as they closed in on each other Daer'Gunn prepared himself. This would take everything he had in order to make sure they both survived.

He used the Force to slow Faye's body enough that when they collided in air, he would not crush her in the collision. He caught her as carefully as he could, but now came the hard part. They were free falling but away from the massive Leviathan now. The momentum built by the Mandalorian jets was still moving him forward and they were falling straight into a mass of buildings and rubble. Daer'Gunn began to draw the Force to him and he needed to gather has much Force as he possibly could in order for this to work. They were less that one hundred meters form their landing when Daer'Gunn closed his eyes and prepared. Their landing was a half blown apart building. It was about four stories tall and Daer'gunn knew that if this went as planned, the building might now be standing once they hit it.

Daer'Gunn's focus was absolute and he waited until every bit of energy was gathered and ready for his call to execute his plan. As the last of the meters closed between the two Jedi and the building, Daer'Gunn felt and explosion from within himself and he exerted his plan. He felt a glow of the Force move out from his body and he could see it engulf his arms and Faye. He was using his Force protection in a new way, he was extending it towards Faye and the was going to use everything else he could to cover himself in it. He turned himself in the air so that he would take a majority of the blow, then they hit the building. Like a wrecking machine, the two slammed into the building almost instantly were through the first couple of floors and they finally came to a stop when the hit the ground floor and went through the outside wall on the other side of the building. The two rolled together over the next hundred or so meters until finally coming to a rest against a large pile of debris.

Daer'Gunn finally exhaled and with the exhale, the glow faded and finally winked out. There was no strength in his arms or the rest of his body. He just lay there limp but his mind was trying to fight off the blackness that was trying to consume him. He needed to move but he didn't have the energy to do so. He did not know how long he fought off the darkness but it didn't seem to matter now. He lay motionless until he heard things coming close to him but he could not focus on what it was until he heard a familiar robotic voice.

"Are you sure there is no Mandalorian blood in your veins? That was a feet worthy of Mandalore himself. There will be songs of this one. We picked up a distress sent by another Jedi and we found your blind student on the way back. The battle is not going well and I think we need a full retreat or we all will be lost. The black ship at the main temple has already taken off and you need a visit to the bacta tank. We are getting you out of here now sir, with or without your permission."

User avatar
Mir
KING OF STRONG STYLE
Posts: 18594
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2006 5:43 pm

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by Mir »

Tone bent backwards, her years of practicing Silserian dance and yoga coming into play as she dodged the lightsaber of the one she fought. The red blade skimmed down her back and barely missed her backside as she gracefully backflipped over it. She landed on her feet, her attack on the darksider enough for Sona to get her attack in. The Sith Sword slid through the flesh of the alien and protruded from his back. Sona pulled the blade out with a fluid and utilitarian motion and the man fell to the ground dead. The two of them were by themselves, but it was alright. They weren't in the thick of the action by far, but they found themselves fighting hard. They had come across a few Schrai and working together had kept them alive. Tone was quite confident that should she survive this fight, she was going to go and work on her lightsaber skills with much more diligence. For her part, Sona was convinced that she and Kail were going to spend some quality time, with him teaching her how better to wield her sword.

She knew that her movements were much too choppy and that she had been getting lucky, or in this case, the Force had been saving her neck more than once. Whichever you wanted to call it, Sona knew that she needed to work on it, because she wasn't going to have that there all the time for her to rely and fall back on.

She moved forward to attack another disciple, using the same set up attack. She went first and then went on the defensive, allowing herself to be put into a gamble which the Cultist usually went for. Tone would then jump forward and when the disciple attacked her, Sona would get into position. They would capitalize on the enemy thinking that Sona was out of the fight for a while in order to achieve their victory. It had worked rather well so far, except for a few instances. Sona was about to find out that this was one of those instances. The Silserian woman's sword clashed against lightsaber blade again and again, until she intentionally let her guard down a little bit and allowed a few attacks to get through, but not actually harm her.

The woman then took a few steps back and then a few more, letting herself lose the advantage in the tempo battle. She was now expecting Tone to step in and attack.

Except Tone didn't.

Sona threw up a quick block and spared a glance to see that Tone was standing still, in a guard position though, with her gaze somewhere far off in the distance. Sona didn't know what it was that was causing the woman to look weirdly away, but she wanted it to stop so that her cousin could help her.

"Tone, where's that lovely violet bladed lightsaber of yours?" Sona called out in a sing song voice as she darted away from the enemy Zabrak Cult of Shadow member.

Tone shook her head, clearing it, as she snapped out of the trance like look. Renato needed help. She turned and saw what was going on with Sona and moved towards her cousin to aid her. Her lightsaber stabbed into the thigh of the Zabrak who had been in such a frenzy to kill one of the Bol'zeri Tribe members present that he had never noticed the presence of the other one, since that one had never attacked him in the first place. He couldn't notice or defend against someone that he hadn't even seen or realized was there the entire time.

"Alright, what the hell is going on?" Sona asked.

"Renato. Something's wrong with Renato." Tone replied.

"Onwards to the almost new relative." Sona said with a shrug and they took off.

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

The ground shook at every step the monster took, forcing the combined Brotherhood and Jedi forces back to the central temple where they came from. They couldn’t attack the monster head on as the blister spores that populate the back of the monster killed anyone who got close to the monster.

Don stood staring at the giant beast as they fought to keep the monster back, but nothing was working. They tried everything in their power to put down the monster, but whatever they threw at it just seemed to make it angrier. As Don stood with his lightsaber in hand, a hover tank shot past him and headed toward the leviathan with all of its weapon systems blaring with energy. The attack did little to slow the monster down as the leviathan raised its leg and stomped down on top of the tank, crushing it beneath its weight. In response, Don charged the beast head on, throwing his hand back toward his men to stay where they are. Don did't need any assistance as it would slow him down. As he charged toward the lumbering monster, the leviathan’s blister spores powered up and sent a white bolt spiraling toward Don. In defense, Don put up a force barrier that blocked the attack but sent Don crashing onto his back. The leviathan sent another way of bolts from its blister spores and struck two Hopolytes on the bridge.

Don quickly got back up and charged but when the monster charged and fired another wave lightning, Don dodged the attack, letting the bolt to splash against the hard stone bridge. At this point, Don was now mere meters to the monster and charged at it with everything he had, dodging the monsters constant attacks As he made it to the monsters foot, he quickly jumped up and started climbing up the towering beast’s leg. As he got to the upper part of the leg, he jabbed his lightsaber into the beast. Don’s attack did little to the beast as it whipped its tail around to hit where Don was hanging on. Don quickly dodged the attack by jumping down, dragging his lightsaber across the monster leg, almost splitting the hard outer surface of the leg open, exposing the fleshy meaty parts inside. As his feet hit the ground, with all his might, Don slashed away at the monster leg until he was forced to move by another whipping of the monsters tail, but the damage had already been done. Don had weakened a portion of the monsters leg for one of the Hopolyte’s tanks to fire a rocket at the monster in hopes too dismembers the beast’s leg. As Don was retreating back to his lines, the monster opened its large mouth, exposing its large jagged fangs at Don in hopes to eat him. The leviathan missed as Don jumped forward, letting the monster scrape against the stone bridge. As the leviathan was recovering from the failed attempt, Don had made it back to the Brotherhood lines. Don quickly climbed up onto one of the tanks positioned on the bridge and ordered the tank commander to fire his entire payload onto that weakened point that Don created.

As the leviathan lumbered toward the Brotherhood and Jedi forces, Don gave the order to fire, and in an instant, everyone with a blasterrifle or cannon fired onto the central part of the leviathan’s leg. The monster bellowed out a deafening screech as the monster thick Endor tree like leg snapped in two near the ankle joint on the beast left leg. The leviathan stumbled forward as it crashed onto the bridge. The coalition forcers immediately erupted with cheer as the monster fell down, but Don stood silent as it would take much more to take the beast down. In response to the levitation crashing to the ground, some Brotherhood and Jedi warriors charged at the beast in hopes to land killing blows to the monsters face, but the blister spores on the monster back made short work of the soldiers approaching the down creature. The soldiers were silenced their cheer as they watched their comrades life energy be sucked from their body and absorbed by the monster.

Herra! Answer my calling, bring the ship around. We can’t destroy this beast like this. Don focused on Herra’s presence on the Brotherhood ship.

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

At first a gentle spring shower came down on the combatants, but after a few minutes it suddenly began to pour violently onto the battle raging below as the sound of thunder was bellowed out like a hundred war drums beating all at once, and streaks of lightning stretched across the dark sky like a hand reaching for the heavens. It was sight of terror and all at the same time as the Brotherhood and Jedi fought tooth and nail to reach Sivter and the coveted Necromonus, but before they could succeed, the planet screamed for more blood from them.

Herra stood on the bridge of the Velox-class Corvette, listening to the bridge crew reporting damages to the ship, cauesed by the Schrai atteckers. The Schrai attacks started as soon as they had dropped off the reinforcements, they were suddenly swarmed by Sivter’s Schrai. The Brotherhood ship was on heading away from the city toward the Northwest. They were forced away from the battle, Herra assumed it was Sivter’s way of getting the ship out of the way so the Leviathan could finish off the ground forces, but it wouldn’t work. Herra was determined to see this through, even if it cost her life and the ship’s crew life. They were all willing to give their life; they wouldn’t have joined up for such a risky mission if they weren’t.

Herra! Answer my calling, bring the ship around. We can’t destroy this beast like this.

The sudden sensation of Don Cuhrka’s presence rushed over Herra like a bucket of warm water, the ever familiar presence was welcoming to her as she decided to walk up to the captain of the ship.

“Yes, Lady Herra?” The ship captain replied as he diverted his attention from the forward viewport to Herra.

“Turn around.” Herra simply said.

“What…Back towards the city?”

“Yes.”

“We can’t, the Schrai are too many in number and strength that way, not counting the Schrai we are dealing with now. They will surely brake through our defenses.” Herra picked up on the captain’s stress as he spoke, the captain didn’t like the idea of losing his men or his ship.

“We’re not leaving them to die. Turn the ship around.”

Shrug. “Yes, Ma’am.” The captain turned to the pilot who was looking up at the captain for directions. “Turn the ship around.” With a deep gulp from the pilot, he started to turn the ship around back toward the city.

As soon as the ship turned around and headed back toward the city, the Schrai attacks became more and more aggressive. They were only to keep the ship away from the pyramid but now that it seems that the ship had no intention of running, Sivter had no choice but to order the Schrai to tear the ship apart piece by piece.

“Captain! The Schrai attacks have become more aggressive, they’re ripping at the hull, Captain.” The first officer reported.

“All power to the engines, we have to get to our forces out as quickly as possible.” The Captain nodded in response to Herra’s command. The ship pierced through the sky at top speed as the Schrai managed to rip one of the aft turrets on the ship; they were cutting through the hull as the ship got closer to the city.

“They’re attacking our engines, Captain.”

“Just hold on, we’re almost there.” The Captain replied as he gave a worry look to Herra.

“Get into firing position; as soon as we get near that monster that is attacking our men, I want you to give it all we got. Understood?”

Hold on Don, I coming.

=-=-=-=-=

The leviathan had gotten to its feet after Don had slowed it down by cutting the lower portion of the leviathan’s forward leg. As the monster was about to fire up its blister spores and wipe out a good amount of Don’s men, Herra’s Velox-classs Corvette rocket overhead, unleashing a flurry of proton torpedoes’ and heavy turbolaser fire unto the monsters side. The leviathan shrieked in pain as the force of the blast knocked the already off balance beast off its footing as it started to tilt toward the edge of the bridge.

“Look! The monster is falling!” One of the Hopolytes replied as he pointed at the falling creature.

Don had a satisfied look as the monster collapsed onto the ancient bridge. The entire bridge shook as it hit, dislodging large chunks of deracrete from under the bridge. The bridge began to give way from underneath the large leviathan. Just then, the entire piece broke off and the leviathan slipped off the bridge as it struggled to keep itself on the bridge until finally the bridge was finally free from the monster grasp and the leviathan fell into the void below the cavern. From where the leviathan fell was a small sliver of bridge still connected, the sliver of bridge was about two meters wide, just enough for Don and the rest of his men to storm the pyramid once and for all.

Herra’s attack didn’t come without consequences. The ship had sustained heavy damage from the Schrai onslaught as the ship lost all power to the engines and made an emergency landing outside the city.

Don looked around him as Jedi and Brotherhood alike, stormed the enemy position on top of the pyramid. Luckily, Daer’Gunn’s men had finally joined up with Don’s so they could fight united against their enemy. Don had wished he had a force ten times as many as he did, but Sivter was successful in wearing down him and his men, but there was still a chance of victory. Sivter still didn’t posses the Necromonus and the darksiders were weak against Don’s and Daer’Gunn’s forces. Don had prepared himself for this final battle with Sivter and he was ready.

As the Jedi and Brotherhood forces approached the pyramid, Sivter’s forces clashed against the coalitions advance. Nothing would stop Don and the Brotherhood from getting to the Necromonus first. The final fight for the Necromonus had begun.

User avatar
kashus_Draith
I beat up Batman
Posts: 2251
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:15 am
Location: Right here
Contact:

Re: HoD: Mantle of Darkness

Post by kashus_Draith »

A streak a lightning split the dark sky as Don rushed up the pyramid cutting through anyone daring to get in his way. Brotherhood and Jedi alike, followed in tow, they had no time to wait as Sivter neared the Necromonus on top of the pyramid. Don looked up toward the top of the pyramid and felt the shimmers of dark energy resonate from the top. It felt as if it was calling for anyone worthy enough to dare to use the powerful weapon, but Don felt nothing for the accursed thing. To Don it was a blight that needed to be destroyed, but something did tug at him from the back his mind, he image what he could accomplish if he did have it. He could rid the galaxy of Sivter and the Sith Empire once and for all.

NO! Don shook the feelings from his mind. That’s what it wants me to think. It is a great evil that has to be destroyed.

Don saw a charging Cult of Shadow Dark Knight charging toward him from a raised position further up the pyramid, the one thought that crossed Don’s mind was that he had no time for games, he had to get to Sivter as soon as possible, so Don reached out with the Force and gripped the charging Cult Knight with the Force and slung the Cult follower over his head and down the pyramid where he would surely die from the fall or by one of his fellow warriors.

Sivter, your mine.

A Schrai swooped down at Don but Don rolled to the side allowing the metallic creature to swipe at thin air. The Schrai quickly doubled back and took another swipe, but this time Don raised his lightsaber in response and took a swipe at the incoming Schrai. Don hit the Schrai in one of its wings sending it crashing into the side of the pyramid. The crash did little to deter from the Schrai as it jumped to its feet like nothing had happen and gave a high pitch squeal as it charged at Don.

As Don was focused on the charging Schrai, a Cult Disciple took this time to strike Don while he wasn’t looking. The Cult of Shadow Disciple was able to get into striking distance and lunged for Don’s back but as the Discple’s blade was about to pierce Don’s back the Disciple felt hollowness in his stomach and his vision blur. The Disciple was pierced through the stomach by Don’s blade. Don never took his eyes off the Schrai and quickly retrieved his lightsaber from the Dead Disciples body and got back into a fighting stance.

“Dirty Cult scum.” Don said in response to the failed attempt of the Cult of Shadow Disciple.

The Schrai warrior swiped high at Don’s head with its right clawed arm and missed as Don ducked and went under the attack and brought his lightsaber up to pierce the Schrai in the side, but the Schrai’s smaller jagged spike deflected the attack and the Schrai warrior quickly moved around to get behind Don and swiped again at Don, but this time at Don’s lower back. Don not fast enough to make a complete 180 degree turn and deflect the attack, he raised the lightsaber above his head so that it angle down so that it cover his back. Don successfully blocked the attack as the Schrai caught the lightsaber blade again, giving Don enough time to turn and face the Schrai face to face. As Don turned, the Schrai hit Don in the side with a balled up fist. The Schrai’s fist hit Don straight in the jaw, knocking him to the ground. Some fellow Acolytes saw that their Paladin was down and quickly rushed to his aid. Don now was bleeding from his mouth but the blow did little to deter Don from the fight. As the Schrai was doubling up on its first attack, Don raised his right hand toward the attacking Schrai and sent a short burst of Force lightning into the beast. The Schrai attack was stopped in mid swing as it fell to its knees.

As Don struggled to get to his feet, he could feel the fatigue setting in as his arm shook with weakness as he supported body with it as he got up. When he did get to his feet, the Schrai had recovered from the Force lightning attack, but was distracted from Don as the Acolytes rushing to Don’s aid were attacking the beast. The Schrai saw that it was outnumbered and weakened. The two Brotherhood members swiped at the Schrai warrior; they made sure to keep their distance, only attacking the Schrai when it was safe to. Don came from behind with his attack, the Schrai sensed the danger and turned, but Don had manage to put some speed into his attack allowing him to move a bit quicker then the Schrai. Don’s lightsaber hit the top of the Schrai head but didn’t pierce through the thick outer exoskeleton, so Don raked the blade across the monsters head and down its face, burning the eyes out on one side of the Schrai’s face. An Acolyte came from the side lopped the one of the Schrai’s main arms. The Schrai shifted its body to get into position to attack with one of its smaller arms. It swiped at Don’s abdomen but missed as Don ducked back away from the Schrai. Don gave a look to the two assisting Brotherhood Acolytes to stay back as he raised his left hand at the beast and sent a constant wave of Force lightning into the Schrai. The Schrai’s metallic exoskeleton started to heat up with extremely high temperatures as the Schrai’s exposed flesh began to bubble up from the intense heat. After a few seconds of constant Force lightning, Don let up and quickly stopped altogether as the Schrai fell to the ground in a heap of charred flesh. Don had cooked the Schrai with his attack, but as Don finished the Schrai warrior Don fell to one knee in exhaustion. The two assisting Acolytes came to his side.

“Paladin Cuhrka, are you alright?” One of the worried Acolytes asked.

“Yes, I’m alright.” Don said knowing full well that he wasn’t. He was fatigued and exhausted from the days fighting; he knew he wouldn’t have enough strength to face Sivter. Don knew if he did face him, he would surely die, and he would not let Sivter have the pleasure of taking his life.

“We’re almost there Paladin Cuhrka. I can see…” The Acolyte trailed off as he was being seduced by the Necromonus. “It-its sooo…powerf-“

“Acolyte!” Don said to the Brotherhood soldier as he grabbed the young warrior’s shoulder. “Do not give into this, thing. Nothing good can come to this, Acolyte. Fight its seduction; don’t let it take hold of you, think of your family and friends.”

“Y-yes, Paladin Cuhrka.” The Acolyte said unevenly.

“Good, now cover the flanks, we must keep a constant wedge formation if we are to pierce through the enemy forces.

“Will do.” The Acolyte said with confidence. “Thank you sir.”

“You’re welcome, now come, let’s teach these Cult scum what true fear is all about.” Don felt some strength come back as he began his assault.

=-=-=-=-=

John was clenching his shoulder as he slowly followed after Alicia. Rain pattered against his face as he looked up into the dark sky. The storm was very peculiar, it wasn’t natural occurence. The storm clouds began to turn in a cyclone formation above the temple. It was almost as if the pyramid itself was causing the storm, but John did care, he knew he had to stop Alicia or die trying. John began to think that he might even have too kill Alicia if she is unwilling to give up, if worse case scenario, he would destroy himself along with the Necromonus with the thermal detonator that he obtained on the shuttle before landing on the pyramid.

Forgive me Alexander if it comes to this, I wish to not bring more pain and suffering to your family, but I can’t allow Alicia to activate the Necromonus.

John wasn’t aware but Sivter and Vlad’druin was right behind him, only a matter of moments. He was truly alone in this endear on the pyramid; an entire army cutting him off from his allies and friends. At John’s full strength, he didn’t stand a chance against the reviled Sivter. So in his present state, the odds were against him, and he knew it, but it didn’t defer him to try. His duty to stop Sivter is all he had left, he wasn’t afraid to lose his life, but the thought of failing was horrific to him, and that alone gave him determination to not stop fighting.

As John pulled himself over the last step, he looked up and saw Alicia standing almost hypnotized like over a long golden staff sticking out what looked to be a thrown on top of the pyramid. A sudden burst of worry washed over him as he scrambled to his feet. John unclenched his arm and pulled out his lightsaber and ignited it as he started over toward where Alicia was standing. The top of the pyramid was flat with a single stone thrown sitting in the middle. As John approached Alicia his eyes widened as he was mere meters from her as she reached out to touch the glowing staff, until suddenly a glowing red lightsaber blade was sticking out of his lower abdomen. John was so focused on Alicia that he had forgotten the what was going on around him, he cursed himself for being so foolish to allow for the enemy to sneak up behind him. John’s mouth was left open as he fell to his knees. The familiar dark figure of Sivter and the Arkanian appeared from both corners of John’s vision as they circle around to face him.

“Don’t worry my pup that is only a flesh wound to your Brotherhood standards.” The slithery tone of the Arkanian said as he grabbed John’s lightsaber from his side. John must have let go of it when he got stabbed in the back.
“I made sure my Verpine didn’t kill you right away, John Gottoh. Sivter wanted you to witness your failure first hand. Heh-eh!” The Arkanian smiled devilishly at John as Alicia reached out and touched the Necromonus.

John was screaming in his head for Alicia to stop but it was no use, she was under Sivter's seduction. He struggled to his feet but failed as he fell flat on the ground. John reached out with his good hand toward Alicia to try to stop her but it was no use.

“Alicia, no!” John cried out.

The Arkanian just smiled at John and turned back to watch the activation of the Necromonus. The lightning began to flashed almost constant now as the thunder roared violently in the sky. Some lightning bolts even hit the pyramid around them as the storm got worse. As she reached out and barely touched the Necromonus, it quickly came to life and slithered up Alicia's arm and rapped around it as if it was a snake. The Darksiders stepped back as the events played out in front of them. As the Necromonus rapped around Alicia’s entire arm she ascended into the air as her whole being glowed in a fiery white light. The clouds opened up and it almost seemed as if gravity stopped as large boulders and dead bodies lifted off the ground. John struggled to keep his eyes open as he drifted in and out of consciousness as he began to feel the effects of his wounds; he knew if he didn’t get medical care soon, he would surely succumb to his wounds.

“Ha! It is what I had imagined it to be.” The Arkanian said as he marveled over Alicia.

Just then, a pulse rippled through the air from Alicia’s floating body as it engulfed the entire city. After the ripple of energy shot out, Alicia descended back to the pyramid, at this time, John managed to get to his knees and pulled out the thermal detonator.

“Sivter!” John exclaimed as he got the attention of Sivter and the Arkanian Dark lord, as well as, the Verpine that stabbed him. “You should have killed me when you had the chance.” John had the detonator on a five second charge. As he pushed down on the detonator to activate it, the Verpine standing next to him quickly jumped toward John and reached out and grabbed the detonator from his hand. John didn’t have enough strength to keep a firm grasp around the detonator so the Verpine was able to snatch it from him and jump off the side of the pyramid with it as it exploded.

“Ha, ha, ha!” The Arkanain laughed. “I knew it was a good idea to have the Verpine as a personal bodyguard. Heh heh! You failed again, Gattoh. Now you will die.”

As Vlad’druin was about to swipe John down, a horrific sound of gurgling came from another Disciple standing off to the side of where they were standing, and then the unthinkable happened, the Disciple body mutated into a horrific looking beast and charged toward Sivter. Sivter quickly disposed of the beast, as Vlad’druin had a surprised look.

“The Necromonus shouldn’t be able to affect Force sensitives?”

“It seems that this Seer is very strong in the Force. More powerful then I had originally thought.”

=-=-=-=-=

As Don sliced through the Cult of Shadow Dark Knight, a ripple shot from the top of the pyramid. Don shrugged in response as he knew what it meant, he didn’t need anyone to tell him that he was too late, the Necromonus was activated. As both sides stop fighting each other, they all looked toward the sky to see a shimmering figure floating in the air, until the fallen soldiers started to get back up again. Don turned to the Cult member he just slew and saw it staring at him with lifeless eyes. As Don stared at the dead body, it began to mutate and transform into a grotesque creature, similar to the ones he ran into in the Dead System.

Instead of the coalition forces fighting the Cult of Shadow, both were struggling to stay alive from the swarming Necromonus plague. Don swiped with his lightsaber, cutting through the mutated body; he managed to decapitate the head of the Necrmonus plague victim.

“Everyone, fall back to the bridge!” Don ordered.

“Don, what about John, I sense he is still alive, but just barely. We can’t leave him.” Vulcan said as he moved back to back with Don, both watching their backs as Cult and Necromonus plague came at them.

“I have no intentions too.”

“What’s the plan then?” Vuclan asked.

“We’ll make a run for the top of the temple as our forces retreat back to the bridge. We should be able to get through the Cult lines now that the plague is unleashed.”

Shrug. “Yeah.” Vulcan sounded uneasy with the plan and the failure of the mission. “Sivter is up there. What should we do about him?”

“I’m sure Sivter will make a B-line out of here now that he has the Necromonus in hand.”

“Alright, then lets do this.”

Post Reply