Burdens of the King
- E. E. Nalley
- Topic Author
- Captain Sea Horse
I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it.
Thomas Jefferson, to Archibald Stuart, 1791
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Below is a stream of conscious commentary I type up as I read the story. There will be details from the story included in it. If you have not read the story yet and don't wish to have details of it spoiled, read no further.
Burdens of the King comments
Nyeomi watching Tari training, learning to reach out and feel the Force. Silas watching in amazement when as Tari works to create her own lightsaber, an impressive amount of control and concentration required. And what the hilt is forged from, whoa. And it is an awesome lightsaber, great description.
3627 BBY (Before the Battle of Yavin)
Hyperspace, aboard the Aces and Eights, en-route to Ruuria, Outer Rim Territories
Wait, this is a different apprentice named Taybri, not Tari, how much time has passed since the previous story? And training in 3 different styles, yikes, that is a lot of work. Mom! Okay, we just had a huge time-skip for Nyeomi and Torm to have an 11-year-old daughter and an apprentice to her mother.
More than a decade as Nyeomi and she still marvels at how her life has changed, heh.
Yet, if I had known then what was coming I would likely have been far more worried than proud. For in the Thirteenth Year of the Reign of Malgus I, Emperor of the Sith, troubles once more came to me.
She earned all those through hard work and determination.
I am Darth Nyeomi Fens, DCR, Countess of Banudan, Lord of the Sith, and that mouthful of titles and accolades is a bit intimidating even to me.
Reflecting on who she once was, Edward, at least she has come to terms with who she is. Now reflecting on Torm, her husband and how much his life has changed since they met. Wait, two newest members of the House Fens, does that mean Taybri has a younger sibling? 10 hours of labor and gave birth to twins, boy, and girl, cool.
Bree for a nickname, cute. Ah, about to become an Apprentice of the Sith Order.
Such a cute family. And Nyeomi is the kind of person I like, someone who doesn't care for all that high society stuff and tiles, just down to earth still after all she has been through.
Silas grinned and playfully punched Bree in the shoulder. "Attagirl, Bree." Bree's grin returned, but her joy did not keep her from carefully placing the hilt on the hanger for it on her belt.
Heh, no good deed goes unpunished indeed. Doing all those amazing deeds alongside her friends and allies, of course she is irreplaceable.
I just knew Saresh would be connected to the ending of cooperation between the Sith Empire and the Galactic Republic. Supreme Chancellor, that bitch, nooo!
But, as the Code of the Sith teaches, Peace is a lie, and as the weeks stretched into months and months stretched into years of not finding Darth Vitiate the Mad, or his mortal remains, old tensions and angers flared more and more. The flowering detente of cooperation withered on the vine of political expediency.
This withering was helped along by Supreme Chancellor Leontyne Saresh a female Twi'lek and the former governor of Taris whose unreasoning hatred of the Sith Empire was unfortunately helped along as my Mistress, Darth Vannacen, and I were the chief reasons she was the former governor of Taris.
And even put a puppet in place when her term ended, I really don't like Saresh, this dictator needs to be stopped.
I would start to question the "coincidences" of the scandal hitting the Senator at the 3rd one.
This did not go unnoticed as brush war after political scandal began to be piled at her feet, but every call for a vote of no confidence in the puppet failed, usually followed with some horrific scandal coming to light about the Senator who had made the call in the first place. On the bright side, Chancellor Madon's efforts to have the Statute of Term Limit repealed had also been stymied, doubtlessly through political chicanery as equally unpalatable.
Aces and Eights heading to Ruuria port, after they stopped a brush war which Sarseh caused, the Beskar used to make Taybri's hilt was a reward from the Mandalorians for revealing Saresh's agent and keeping the peace. Interesting traditions which the Sith have, plus the double-standards towards the Jedi and Sith, good grief.
Now I see why Nyeomi wants her daughter as her apprentice, watch her learn and grow alongside her. And Taybri is a showoff and completely without fear, any lesser woman would be exhausted keeping up with her I bet.
Taybri was a fun loving child who wore her heart on her sleeve, and while she was remarkably intelligent, she was only a diligent student in the subjects that interested her. She had excelled in anything related to being a Sith or the Force, but she still struggled with math or theoretical science. Despite that she was quite inquisitive and to be in her presence usually meant being bombarded with questions.
I pity anyone who sees Kalelam reading a book and thinks he is an easy target. Almost 5 feet at 10 years old, just how tall will he get?
Kalelam was his father's son, he was a meter and a half tall at ten. He had my chestnut hair and the same mix of our complexions which in him left him a shade or two lighter than his sister, beyond that he was a virtual clone of his father. Same face, same roguish smile and devilish charm and I'm sure he would be lady killer of the first rank when he discovered girls. He was as strong as his size would lead you to believe, but he was also studious, and a voracious reader. He was 'book smart' to his sister's 'learn after doing' approach, and he doted on his father, despite having gotten his love of reading from me.
Kale sticking with her father, guess it would be too much for both her kids to join the Sith Order. Fable Malo still dating Silas, 10 years and just living together, huh. Darth Mur, Tari, yay!
Fourth pregnancy, whoa, wonder who Tari's mate is.
The most senior of my apprentices was looking well, her belly swollen with her fourth pregnancy that even the expensive Vine-silk gown she was wearing was no longer hiding.
Crud, the Void wishes to talk to Nyeomi, sounds like it is finally calling in that favor. Uncanny valley effect, guess there are some things you can't get over easily.
Smart woman, being in debt for an unnamed favor is especially bad. Freeing an expert named Asher Vallen from the Republic, boy, the Void sure knows how to pick an equivalent favor. The Belsavis Prison still exist! The Republic still denying it exists, if it was revealed to the galaxy the Republic would suffer a huge scandal.
"Curious. You alone of the sentients I have contact with are so reticent to take advantage of my aid and knowledge. It has lead to my valuing the favor you have offered much more than any of my dealings with them. Was this deliberate?"
"I have a great dislike for being in debt," I answered.
Nyeomi and Taybri going down, Silas trying to get in on the mission but no dice. Sending Silas and Fable off to the Brodogon system while they take care of business, in and out quick, as if is ever that easy. Having to call her own mother mistress, if you didn't understand the Sith culture that would be very weird.
Belsavis System, Bozhnee Sector , Outer Rim Territories
Fighters sent to board the Aces and Eights, at least it is some of their own and not the Republic's. The Mark VI sounds incredible.
Now that is some security. Dreadnought Avenger and Commander Calum, that was quick.
The computer in the watch was tied to a complicated encryption algorithm that changed that code every thirty seconds. It and the transponder would prove my identity to any Revanite Sith military unit.
That close to a Star Destroyer, I would still find the Harrower-Class intimidating. Belsavis sounds like an interesting world to visit, just not stay on for long.
That is an impressive piece of communications tech Fable got for them. I love that Fable can tease them about their ship.
"We'll be monitoring this, day and night," she assured me. "These are new. I have a buddy in Imperial Intelligence that hooked me up. They are ultra long range, secure, scrambled and can pierce a lot of the more common jamming methods the Republic uses. Call us and we'll be here as fast as I can make this hunk of junk go."
Boy, the respect Nyeomi gets but insist they keep it informal, no wonder the rank-and-file like her. Yikes, no wonder Belsavis hasn't been shut down yet, sounds more like a living nightmare instead of a madhouse. Ride down in a supply shuttle, the oldest trick for sneaking onto planets. Colonel Grang, good thing I double checked that, my eyes almost read that as Colonel Krang.
Okay, that is an unusual design for a shuttle, especially those outer doors. Just standing room, a rough ride down seems like an understatement. Aww, Bree in her lap, adorable. Belsavis sounds like it would a great environment to set a roleplaying game in, so many different things to experience and explore.
Ugh, the Republicans trying to cover up their dirty secret by any means, anti-air batteries to shoot down anyone who tries to come down. The shuttle pilot is incredible to get through all this, wonder how many times he has had to deal with the environment and enemy fire. Four crash sites, yikes.
Congratulating the pilot on his work, shoot, I would want to give him a medal.
It appeared that the primary target of the first wave had been the prison's space port, cutting off the Republicans from retreat or resupply. Doubtless, they were in the process of setting up some kind of replacement, assuming they could even call for help.
Above 8 or 9 meters and winds too intense for air speeders, yikes.
Dang, if anything deserves the name tank it is these vehicles. A drainage system to keep the spaceport from flooding, how bad would it be without those?
The Centipede was a massive, articulated vehicle, part transport, part mobile HQ, part mobile artillery platform. It came in two sections, both tracked and joined by an articulating coupler. They were close to five meters tall and their tracks allowed them to go just about anywhere. They could move an entire company of infantry along with enough gear to have them fighting in the field for weeks. The heavy armor plate also meant they could shrug off or just absorb an obscene amount of damage.
Lieutenant Ayers directing them to the Command Center, now that is a fortified location. A forward outpost in a combat zone, now that is scary.
This Republic is far from it by the time of the Battle of Yavin.
Add to the mix that I was walking on a secret prison where the Republic had refused to repatriate Sith Empire POWs as well as keeping their own citizens as political prisoners, and I have to admit that perhaps the Galactic Republic needed to be over thrown.
Figures the droids are the ones to bar their way.
Oh boy, not sure I would trust a droid created by such beings, sound a little too aggressive for guard duty. I always wondered what those 'droidikas' were modeled on.
Colicoid Creation Nest Mark I War Droids to be exact, that were guarding the blast door entrance to the Command Center. Now, Colicoids are a hive minded insect, that are also capable of independent thought. I know, it sounds weird. They look like...well...bugs, but four legged, two and a half meter tall bugs. There are few species in the Galaxy as mean as Colicoids, which in a way explains their business dealings with the Sith Empire. Colicoid Creation Nest was a business combine, for lack of a better word, they founded to indulge in their two great loves, droid manufacture and killing.
Colonel Grang is the picture of a military man, at least from those I've seen over the years. Ouch, literally stuck between a rock and a hard place without more troops.
A large, burly man wearing mottled field fatigues turned towards me. He was better than two meters tall, taller than me, even in my boots, and as wide as two of me. It was clear his genetics were predisposed to obesity, but his iron will, and his workout regimen, kept his body hard; I could very much respect that. He had a round face with intense dark eyes and a somewhat florid complexion. He was both bald and clean shaven.
Promising pardons if they help them fight, as if the Republicans would honor that deal. Ooo, an attack on Intake Transfer as a distraction from the real goal. Ouch, Alpha Company already in bad straights and now have to dig in and hold what they have.
Bree is going to have the best mother/daughter work day stories to tell.
"You stay with me," I commanded, turning to walk again. "And mind what I've taught you already. This isn't practice, it's war and these men are desperate. Do you understand me?"
Bree isn't the youngest Sith Apprentice or Jedi Padawan to come to it, just how young are some of them? A Torch, sounds fast.
Extra padding for Bree's helmet, Jenkins is a good man. No roads, just dirt tracks, now speeding along on the Torch on those is a thrill ride for sure. A prison meant to be a farm where they grow their own food, that is very strange for a secret prison.
a long, rakish racer, a Lhosan Industries Torch
Bree has very sharp eyes to spot little movement at the speeds they are going.
It's a war zone, not being too careful can come at a high price. Sergeant Anri, I like her, hope she survives all this.
I turned to take in a Twi'lek female, with bright banana yellow skin and black tiger striping on her lekku, and the deepest, bluest eyes I've ever seen, in the process of moving a Czerka Arms 2K blaster rifle to safe direction. It had a scope mounted to it and a number of 'user modifications' I doubted were strictly regulation.
Nice, promotion to Lieutenant for Anri. *winces* Their company has been decimated. Mixed bag for two squads, hit hard seems like an understatement. Take Administration, Nyeomi never does anything halfway.
Ouch, at least a half a dozen Republic personnel blocking their way. Able to trick them into opening fire blindly using smoke grenades, genius. Nyeomi talking about the feeling she gets when she is 'guided by the Force'.
Yes, I've done those when I was younger.
You've tried it when you thought no one was watching. Reaching out your hand and trying to will something to come to you, or walking up to an automatic door and pointing at it, just as the sensor sees you and the door opens, but in some part of your mind you giggle that you had, just for a moment, been able to use the Force.
That is what being guided by The Force is like.
*cringes* The description of what a lightsaber does to a man, that is beyond brutal. Whoa, they cut through the defenses so fast. Great, a hypocritical Jedi who calls the Sith evil while defending the Republic's dirty secret. Yikes, it seems this Jedi has the skills to back up his ego, blocking Nyeomi's feint and true strike.
Okay, I almost heaved when he responds. No emotions, only Peace, that isn't how peace works!
"Trying to live your life like a monk, suppressing your emotions, caring for nothing, that is perverse!"
Too dangerous, for questioning how the Republic is run, Nyeomi isn't kidding when she says he might as well be a droid.
"The men sentenced here are too dangerous to be allowed in society." Again he feinted, then spun, twirling his blade behind him and attempted to strike my spine. "If your mind wasn't clouded by hate you would see that!"
This Jedi makes me sick to my stomach, never questioning whether the rules of society are just or not, just that they are to be obeyed. Heh, no answer about innocent until proven guilty, Nyeomi finally stumped the man who is more like a machine. A Force-augmented kick to the groin, he isn't recovering from that anytime soon. Roundhouse kick to the head and down he goes, good.
Building taken, Jedi being secured, and Nyeomi explains to Bree why the Jedi lost to her, treating a life-and-death fight like a tournament fight was foolhardy at best. Now they have another structure to work from and treat the wounded, I hope they can take all of Belsavis from the Republic soon.
I could almost pity those Wardens and Prison Volunteers, almost. Captain Vandorn feels like he is going to be a pay to work with. Yup, complete ass who is probably looking for an excuse to stab Nyeomi in the back. And not even a real soldier, yet administrator for Special Forces units, can already tell this ass just wants them to do a good job to make himself look good, not caring if any of them die due to his orders.
First, he tries handing off a job Nyeomi gave him to someone else, then insults someone for their species, Vandorn is lucky Nyeomi won't kill him for this.
Yay! And even lets Anri keep the Jedi's lightsaber, awesome.
Captain Vandorn could not continue as my temper had slipped its leash and The Force had instantly acted. The Captain went pale as his hands began to claw at the invisible vice that was squeezing his throat. "I am a Revanite, Captain!" I told him tightly. "I am only interested in merit and when I find it, I reward it. I found merit in former Sergeant Anri and so I promoted her. More to the point I am a Sith; do not ever question my judgment again."
So without the Administration building, the Republicans basically are fighting a losing battle at this point, good. Computer equipment intact, smart prisoners to disobey the Jedi.
Aww, so cute. And when your mother and mistress insist you get some rest, you get some rest. Listen to the voice of experience.
"Bree, you are eleven, and your body has a higher energy density that the power cells of my light sabers. I am, ahem, over thirty and my body's energy density is considerably lower." I gave her a little hug as I let her under my cape and got us comfortable against some supply crates. "Have you failed to notice we have not stopped since we set foot on the Avenger?"
A dream that is a mixture of the mundane and convoluted, interesting. Interesting bit of history about the Sith and the Trials you have to pass to become an Apprentice. Wait, Bree is her sixth apprentice, just how long do apprenticeships for the Sith last? Good grief, still consider her teaching 'heresy'. Ah, the dream is part memory of when Bree took part in the Trials. A death sentence and they have to kill him by deflecting his blaster fire or one of them dies and he goes free, this is messed up. Especially the part where Bree ask what his crime is and Tremel gets angry with her saying it has no bearing here.
Anri wakes up Nyeomi with bad news, someone kicked over a Fire Wasps nest and they have to deal with it, good grief. They have the location of Vallen but aren't able to get him due to the call for aid.
Yikes, these Fire Wasps are some nasty insects. Ugh, the Republican released them from a vault to cover their escape, that is nasty.
"I've never seen anything like them, Colonel! It takes five or six shots from a blaster to bring them down and they act like they have no sense of pain!"
Like something out of a horror movie. Esh-Kha, thought to be extinct, how are there any still alive after so long? Statis chambers, what kind of mad being would want to keep such things alive?
The map changed showing a bipedal alien, only vaguely humanoid, that stood on digitigrade legs on their toes. The torso and arms where heavily muscled with massive hands that had a single finger and a pair of thumbs on either side. The head looked like cow's skull with a bony protuberance that covered the top of it, shielding a pair of beady black eyes and crowned with a pair of short horns. The mouth was a horrific red maw full of sharp teeth.
General Order 10.
I can just imagine the nightmare they would unleash on the universe if they escaped Belsavis. I hope that old spaceport is able to help Nyeomi and Bree finish their mission and wipe out the Esh-Kha as well.
miling grimly, I said, "If you survive this, lieutenant, they will go over this in Officer Candidate School, which you will have to graduate from to make my field promotion permanent. In short, it orders, 'No ship with a hyperdrive is to land on Belsavis from this point forward and no ship from Belsavis will be allowed to dock with a hyperdrive equipped vessel without first being boarded and searched stem to stern for stowaways or contraband.' The Esh-Kha have already survived one war of genocide, we do not want to have to fight another one."
Those engineers and damage control parties do a lot of work in dangerous situations. Aww, Torm concerned for their daughter, though I wonder if he would be more worried if she were older and dating instead of in a war zone. Hehe, joking about life keeping them apart, they are such a cute couple. Bwahaha, the way they flirt with each other, it is a good thing Bree is asleep right now.
Now that sounds like a fun family outing.
"We were hoping you'd be back in time for Mid-summer," he told me in his clear tenor, which cracked just a tiny bit hinting that puberty was about to come calling on my son. "We are going to have a picnic and watch the fireworks for Empire Day."
No matter what you try to say you can't help but be her mother, Nyeomi. Of course you would think differently about taking Bree into harm's way, even if she is your apprentice now. Biscuit Baron, interesting name for a galactic food chain. Yeow! Losing that much of his right arm, Major Gavin Ulgo is one tough guy. Having to focus on the Esh-Kha now instead of the Republicans, let's just hope one of these buggers doesn't escape somehow.
Nice use for the old spaceport and its turbolifts.
If that doesn't wipe out the Esh-Kha, I don't want to know what will.
"The rest of you men will be re-enforcing Major Ventin at Medium Security in holding the crevasse. Your goal is to herd the Esh-Kha into the Maximum Security crater. Once that is accomplished your engineers will collapse the crevasse and the Avenger will finish off these devils with an orbital bombardment. Once the Esh-Kha are a smoking smear we will withdraw to the space port and retreat to the Avenger and then back to the Empire."
A rag-tag group but you work with what you've got. At least the Aratech Centipede Crawler Tanks are good to go. Bree excited and afraid, good, only a fool isn't afraid. 4 trips to get them all to the top, those are some big lifts. Nice pep talk to the troops, honest yet inspiring.
Bwahaha, she's got her parents sense of humor. Over a quarter of an hour, yikes, that is bad in a fighting retreat. Sending those troops off while having to stand guard for the next group which comes down, the suspense would kill me.
The doors closed and the car began to descend.
"Nobody fart," warned Bree.
Open ground with no cover or concealment, uh oh. Moffitt's platoon has a rough job ahead, hope there are no hidden surprises waiting for them. Force speed sounds exciting and terrifying at the same time. Most of the hard cases still locked up, why does this feel like a complication waiting to happen? Asher Vallen, boy, I expected someone a bit more durable looking.
Saying he will come quietly, is he really a serial killer or was he framed? Nyeomi came prepared to tie this guy up with no way for him to potentially lash out at them. Yikes, okay, can't judge based on appearances, the look in his eye is enough to convince me he is a serial killer.
Having to get Vallen through a blaster fight alive, this job just keeps getting more complicated. Protecting Moffitt and his platoon from blaster fire, then it suddenly stops, crud. The Esh-Kha are here! Barracaded with those things outside, having to hold their ground, I hope none of them break as the Esh-Kha are horrors. Crud, some of the men pulled through windows, that shouldn't happen to anyone.
This is like a horror movie, these poor men sent here to liberate a prison and now facing down ancient horrors that shouldn't exist anymore. Only Bree, Nyeomi, and the last of the soldiers in the lift, one of Nyeomi's lightsabers winks out due to its battery being drained, the other nearly depleted as well, dang. *eyes bug out* Blasting an Esh-Kha to pieces and pushing the rest back with the Force, never anger a mother who is protecting her child.
Waking up in pain, after all Nyeomi did in that battle and that last stunt she pulled she is lucky it isn't worse. Ah, the kolto tank aboard the Aces and Eights, really wish such technology existed in our universe. Aww, Bree asleep at the table, wonder how long Nyeomi has been out and Bree has been watching over her. Fiveareen, a while since we saw that droid, nice to see him again.
Hyperspace, aboard the Aces and Eights, en-route to Alderaan, Central Core Worlds
Good, the prisoner is restrained, if he breaks loose and causes trouble after all this I will be annoyed. Aww, a private call home to Torm thanks to X4. Mostly Force Burn Out, no wonder she is so sore. And of course she is the proud parent about Bree to Torm, their daughter is skilled for any age.
Nyeomi thinking about the tragedy of Alderaan in the far future and what she can do to prevent it, I hope what she does can affect the future that far.
Alderaan System, Alderaan Sector , The Core Worlds
And already I don't like the Crown Prince nor Senator Gual Panteer. Darn, Panteer already assassinated and the Senate split on whether to support or publically rebuke the Prince, that is a horrible situation for the citizens.
After the Treaty of Coruscant was signed, ending the Great Galactic War as it had come to be know, Crown Prince and Senator Gaul Panteer had left the senate, taking his world with him, enraged the Republic would settle for anything less than the extermination of the Sith Empire.
The Queen dead as well, ouch. Captain Thul's House is one of those who has a claim to the throne, I hope they succeed.
Great, make a mess even worse by grabbing power and declaring Martial Law, a power-hungry idiot who doesn't care about the people. Bouris Ulgo is going to be assassinated at this rate.
Speaking of, things were further confused by Bouris Ulgo, Commanding General of the Alderaan Self Defense Force staging a coup d'etat, usurping House Panteer, setting himself up as King and declaring Martial Law.
Airspace like around New York, how do they keep it so organized? And flying in those crowded skies sounds like an accident waiting to happen. That poor Palace never stood a chance with an idiot setting up in it. Now that is a picture you paint with your description, flying into a fairy tale indeed.
Rhu Caenus Space Port is interesting, tractor beams to guide ships into their hangers, cool.
Silas has a nice hobby. I wonder if Nyeomi will approve what the Void wants Vallen for.
Every time we made landfall now, he got a new planet sticker from the set that had come with the galaxy map and added it to the map.
If Nyeomi wasn't such a professional I think she might have tossed him to the Esh-Kha instead of rescuing him.
Asher Vallen was a monster who killed for sport, or amusement, or because it was Tuesday. He had raped and murdered his way across most of the Central Core and Midrim before being caught and put away for good, or so someone had thought to Belsavis.
Why do I have the feeling Moff Sarek wants Vallen for his own purposes and isn't the kind to take no for an answer?
"Darth Fens, we are honored by your presence. I am Raina Temple, Imperial Diplomatic Service, aid to Moff Sarek."
Grace him with her presence, at least his messenger accepts Nyeomi has to finish her own dealings first. Though the way Raina looked at Vallen I'm not sure I would trust her. Silas and Fable showing up after Raina leaves, at least they are all going, never know when trouble might pop up.
Meeting of a pair of tectonic plates, interesting. Kaamos for House Thul, Apalis for House Organa. And now crowded as the city has been abandoned due to the coup by General Ulgo, he is even worse than I first thought.
Juran Mountains, Alderaan, The Core Worlds
That is a weird culture, with space travel and advanced technology you'd think they would get past this kind of rule and class-based culture. And reading how it works further down it sounds like a nightmare for the peasants, especially if the Dukes and Lord Dukes are petty or needlessly cruel. And it almost seems like being a Freeman is both a great job, but also a high risk at the same time.
As it was, Alderaan was an odd mixture of Science Fiction oddity with city areas existing next to wilderness with no suburban sprawl at all and Middle Ages European Feudalism. Alderaan had no states or nations, the various noble houses ruled their territories directly. Differences or feuds between noblemen had to be heard and adjudicated by the High Council of Alderaan who also voted on who would be ruler.
Because in Feudalism, it's your Count that votes!
Boy, how much of different human cultures are part of Alderaan? And a rich nobleman thinking he is "disguised", while in a get-up like that and with bodyguards, oh brother. Prince Vengeance, please say that isn't his real last name. That Void Bot needs to learn that what is and isn't someone's concern is for them to decide. Baron Ferris Organa, oh boy, probably an ancestor of Luke and Leia.
Those feelings when he looks at Bree, don't tell me this monster Vallen killed this man's child, children, or wife. Had a daughter, yup, Vallen killed his daughter. Keep him alive for weeks, tortured and eventually dying, this man took his daughter away. I wouldn't keep Baron Organa from getting his vengeance on this monster.
Ouch, I can feel the pain his words.
"No," he told me softly as he turned back from watching his men and his eyes were deeply sad. "No, it won't. But it is something. And that is all I have left."
The Ducal holdings are impressive, a small city with nearly everything you could want. Ah, that dress, so long since Nyeomi wore it yet the description is hard to forget.
Embassy of the New Revanite Sith Empire, Kaamos Territory, Alderaan, The Core Worlds
Now that is too cute.
Since I was in white, Bree decided to match me in a very cute cold shoulder sun dress with one quarter sleeves and flowing skirt that fell below her knee.
Those poor people, how can anyone call themselves a leader, look at their people being in this condition, and not act or even stand down if it would improve their lives. Krisfa Sarek, all those medals and awards, guess he has seen some action in his day. The noble woman with him, why do I get a bad vibe from her?
Interesting chain of command and where each rank has command. Lady Elana, hhm.
Oh no, not one of these types, is she trying to bait Nyeomi into saying something or reacting? Only half a glass of wine for Taybri, love that mom glare Nyeomi has down.
"Well, that must be simply fascinating," she declared as she got her napkin settled and silently ran her spoon through the broth. "Living a life of adventure, roaming the galaxy, the Force bending to your will; I must say I envy you, Countess."
Alderaan Spice Wine, sound good. Sarek planning something, his mind locked up so she can't read him, why do I get the feeling this is a trap. Figures, Elana wants her for something big and probably dangerous, people always treating her like a pawn in their own schemes. Oh great, this is starting to sound like they want Nyeomi to do something she wouldn't like.
Ugh, calling nobility and chivalry quaint ideas, knew there was something I didn't like about Elana.
"Jorad is a fool," Elana interrupted harshly. "A well meaning, kindhearted fool who has the breeding to rule our House, but not the spine or the stomach for what must be done by actual rulers. He cannot bear the burdens of a king. My husband's quaint ideas of nobility and chivalry will see our House bled dry against the Organas, while they eliminate us, and install their chosen puppet on the throne. I would, with the Empire's help, sweep away the Usurper, Ulgo, and install Aurren Panteer on the throne."
Trying to put Aurren on the throne, idealism having no place on the throne, oh brother. Neutrality, that annoys me for some reason. Great, Aurren or a 17-year-old girl with romantic dreams, her head in the clouds, and sending scandalous overtures to Baron Ferris, a married man who is grieving for his own daughter. Lead troops against Ulgo in place of Aurren, good grief. A secret way into Panteer Castle, that is about the only way they can pull this off without it being a suicide mission.
Silas upset about Nyeomi is going to do, Fable saying it just part of her job. Fable coming along and Silas wondering whose head he gets to put in a vice if she doesn't come back, heh, Silas needs to learn the women in his life are going to do what they want no matter his objections. Boy, she just set it all out there about her life and choices, we should all be so lucky as to have a second chance go as well as hers has.
Cafe Mohrenkopf, Kaamos Territory, Alderaan, Central Core Worlds
House Panteer Redoubt, Glarus River Valley, Alderaan, Central Core Worlds
Very interesting creatures and even a logical reason as to how they can fly/float. Riding them is a sport, both, they have a very unique culture.
The Thranta looks like a gigantic blue white manta ray for lack of a better description. A long, sleek body with a pair of triangular fleshy 'wings' sloping down to a lithe, slender tail. Despite the nasty looking beak, they're quite friendly and docile. Whether they fly or float is a matter of some debate. Their diet and digestive juices produce a fair amount of hydrogen gas, which instead of being passed, is channeled into bladders in the wings and body. So much so they actually weigh almost nothing, despite their size.
*eyes bug out* Blaster fire and no one hit, creatures full of hydrogen, yikes. A very interesting main hall, though you have to wonder if they have earthquakes in the area with it being an expanded cavern. So this is Aurren, an interesting young man.
Wonder if he is more idealistic than Elana believes.
"A pleasure, Darth Fens, I must profess to being something of a fan of your treatise on the Code of the Sith and the history of your order."
Bree's response to him is priceless, there is a young girl who you don't wish to try and intimidate. A drainage system and the part of it which isn't alarmed to sneak into the castle, classic.
"Captain Lieber Panteer of the Queens' Own Guard, little girl. What of it?"
Elana said it was already set up with Aurren and his men, yet Captain Lieber has no idea of all this. Is Elana secretly working with Bouris and seeking to eliminate all the threats to his rule in one trap?
While Aurren rubbed his chin doubtfully, Fable leaned into my shoulder and asked, "Wasn't this little gig supposed to be already decided? You smell a trap?"
A Gungan Bongo, talk about stealth entry through a waterway unless something goes awry. Elana worrying and micro-managing, good grief. Bree staying behind to guard the Duchess. Interesting little surveillance droid, speaks in Bocce, please say it can speak other languages. Fable's Czerka 2K1 carbine sounds like a brutal, close-range firearm.
House Panteer Docks, Alsakan Sea, Alderaan, Central Core Worlds
Imperials buddying up with House Thul or Panteer troopers, this will be interesting to watch. 20 minutes in such tight quarters, must have felt like a lot longer to them. Beach landing and keeping their feet dry, then climbing rocks to find the drain. No sensors on the grate, lock sliced off by Nyeomi, oil on the hinges by Fable, they could give lessons in breaking and entering.
Moving through those pipes, talk about claustrophobic. Good thing the grate at the end wasn't bolted down. Fable using Nyeomi name in front of the troops, darn, just knew it couldn't be this easy. Princess Katei with a Jedi escort, d'oh!
And that Jedi trying to force Ulgo to calm down using the Force, and they call the Sith evil.
"Law?" the other shouted. "Do not lecture me about law, little girl! You know the Thuls have control of the Hoherrat! It was law that they used to escape having to answer for having your mother murdered! It was law that let them defy their banishment and return to Alderaan! They will use the Law as a cudgel to beat us..."
Nyeomi having the droid begin transmission, what is she thinking right now? Great, the Jedi sensed her, another complication. A small group of Republic soldiers with the Jedi master and Nyeomi stuns them all with the Force using her voice.
That 'crown', bwahahaha.
Turning to the big man on the dais I pointed and shouted, "Bouris Ulgo, I declare Blutrache between our houses!"
The Princess stopping the Jedi Master from interfering because it is their law, if he attacks anyways that means he has no respect for the law other than the Jedi laws. Bwahaha, Ulgo thinks since he has been dueling since he was fourteen he has a chance. Ulgo has killed a Sith before and says Nyeomi won't be the last, arrogant to the end I see. A lightsaber in the hands of a non-Jedi or Sith, this won't end well even if he is skilled.
*watches Ulgo wield the lightsaber* Okay, now I'm worried. Princess Katei as the judge for the duel, at least we have a fair judge. Good rules for the duel. *eyes bug out* This guy has wielded a lightsaber on more than one occasion in the past at least. Nice standing split to kick Ulgo in the chin and knock him down. Ouch! That kick, he is a tricky duelist.
Kick to the head and then to the knee, it is like Nyeomi is dancing around him with acrobatic moves and sword skill. Olgo is doing a fatal mistake in any kind of fight, losing his temper. *sigh* Ulgo sounds delusional now, thinking the other Houses would sell them into slavery to either the Republic or the Sith, thinking only he fights for Alderaan.
Broken arm and Ulgo still refuses to yield.
Makes you wonder if he lied to himself so long he believed it or if he truly was a patriot and was betrayed.
I...I have done everything for Alderaan. Given the last of my blood to see us free from everyone, Republic! Sith! Only Alderaan, an Alderaan free of all outside masters! I won't be paraded about in a show trial," he growled. His expression softened and his voice became genuine. "You are a magnificent warrior, Nyeomi Fens, but heed my words, someday, your usefulness will be used up and you will be kneeling, looking up at your death. I hope you meet your death with the courage I will meet mine. So I ask you, warrior to warrior, for a soldiers death. Don't make me an actor on the stage of the great galactic game of Empire in a sham trial, or an old man in cell, used up and forgotten. Let me die a man who has fought for what he believed in and..." he hesitated, almost unable to admit to himself and say the words. However he straightened his spine to declare, "fought for what he believed in and lost."
Nyeomi grants him his last request, killed in honorable combat and a clean strike too so he can have an open casket funeral. And yet the Jedi only sees what he wants to see, calling her a murderer and readying to attack, only to be stopped by everyone there including the Princess.
Glad to see reasonable people, though the Jedi need to have their people trained to not have such tunnel vision, always seeing every act a Sith does as evil.
"What's the matter with you people?" he shouted, utterly confused. "She is a Sith! She is evil! You just saw her murder a helpless man in cold blood!"
"If that is what you saw, your eyes deceive you," the Princess declared. She walked over to me and curtseyed. "Countess, I salute you, the honor you have shown, and the respect you paid to the traditions of my people. The day is yours, Paladin of House Thul." The Jedi extinguished his saber shaking his head with a confused, befuddled look as all of the Alderannians bowed to me.
The Field of Fallen Heroes, Glarus River Valley, Alderaan, Central Core Worlds
And reasonable politicians as well, will wonders never cease. Nyeomi, Bree and Jedi Master Master Tunan-Obi Vost wore black despite their beliefs about death, nice to see respect for others beliefs.
In a rare display of unity, the Alderaan Hoherrat, or Ruling Council voted unanimously to lay aside all partisan differences to give Bouris Ulgo the State Funeral he deserved as a King and man who had given his entire life in service to his world.
Poor sons to lose their father this way, not showing any emotions. Tenna Ulgo, poor woman to lose her husband that way.
The fact they came to the funeral shows a lot about them all.
Cemeteries are tremendous focal points of death, the opposite of the Force which is created by life itself. For either a Jedi or Sith, it takes tremendous self control to purposefully be in a graveyard.
Vost coming over to speak with Nyeomi.
*rolls eyes* Only believing what you are told, not seeking the truth for yourself, that is foolish imo. Saying he wishes to understand her while coming to her with these preconceived notions is just going to end in a fight or frustration.
"I wish to understand you," he said and there was real confusion in his expression. "I have had a discussion with the Archivist at the Jedi Temple and read all I could on you. You are not an evil person. You have acted with honor in every encounter we have documentation on. Grand Master Shan practically describes you as a Jedi. Why do you serve evil?"
Leaving his cross and confused, I wonder if he will learn for himself for once. Aurren Panteer the next king of Alderaan, I wonder if that changed history?
Darn it! Please say Nyeomi isn't going to die to that monster.
A warning that would come to fruition much sooner than I or anyone else could have imagined. For, within a month the galaxy would be at war. A war of complete conquest and extermination. Nothing so petty as Republic versus Empire or Jedi versus Sith; even though there were those who had definitely been fomenting and abetting such a conflict. We were, in the words of my Emperor Darth Malgus, all of us deceived.
For from the darkness of the unknown regions of the galaxy, Darth Vitate the Mad had finally returned and he brought the Eternal Empire with him.
Another great Star Wars piece, I wondered where you would go next and you surprised me with the time jump and Nyeomi and Torm having two kids now, one being Nyeomi's new apprentice. Tari on her fourth pregnancy, any clues for us as to who her husband is? It was great to see most of the old gang once again and the new additions, Bree is awesome.
I knew the favor being called in by the Void would lead to something big, but not a threat like the Esh-Kha almost being unleashed on the universe. I loved how Nyeomi agreed to hand over Vallen to poor Baron Organa, a monster like that deserves it. Never expected the situation on Alderaan, a nice glimpse of the impact politics can have on the commoners. Plus I never expected to see someone who wasn't a Jedi or Sith wield a lightsaber with such skill, well done. The funeral had the right level of gravitas and I'm glad Nyeomi was able to control herself while talking with Vost. But that last part, now that caught me completely off guard. I hope Nyeomi and everyone makes it through okay dealing with Darth Vitate. I can't wait to read more in the future.
Thank You for story comments appreciated and help me know me they are being read and liked. Note: My story comments can't nor are trying to replace reading the stories, simply my way of enjoying them and letting the authors know I enjoy them.
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