View Full Version : KOTOR III: The Wrath of War

04-01-2006, 09:23 PM

I, Tysy, began as a young female apprentice studying in the Jedi
Enclave upon Dantooine. Fourteen years after the Jedi Exile defeated
Darth Traya at the heart of the evil Malachor V, the Order had slowly
been rebuilt. I was given three trials: an Echani duel with Master
Brianna, an analysis of the Jedi Code from Master Visas Marr, and
an undercover scouting mission from Master Atton Rand.

During this mission, I helped to find and rescue Canderous Ordo,
the Mandalore in exile, who had been trying to convince his people
to join the battle against the True Sith. The Mandalorian raiders
who had captured him, however, said they were more interested
in robbery and murder as common thugs. Canderous and I returned
to Master Atton at the Enclave, who finally made me a Padawan!

I chose to become a Jedi Consular, and I built a silver saberstaff.

Very soon after I finished constructing it, Master Atton told all
of us that there was a meeting at the Khoonda government outpost.
We decided to attend, even Canderous, because Master Atton told
us we "could be in trouble." When we got to Khoonda, there was a
stranger in a Jedi Robe trying to speak with Administrator Adare...

"I've told you," said the stranger. "My name is Bastila Shan, and
I am a Jedi Master. I've spent the past ten years looking for Revan.
Revan is the key to ending the evil that threatens our entire galaxy!"

Administrator Adare was confused. She thought the Sith had already
been defeated, since the three previous Sith Lords were dead.

Bastila Shan said no. She said the True Sith were still at large,
beyond the Outer Rim. She asked Administrator Adare for help--
lots of credits, and access to the Ebon Hawk spaceship,
which the Jedi Exile had abandoned when he left my Masters
behind on Dantooine. Administrator Adare said yes, and
Bastila picked her crew.

Atton Rand would pilot the Hawk, as he had 14 years ago.
Canderous Ordo would be aboard as a soldier, a war veteran.
Bastila, as Commander of this mission, would lead us.
Master Visas Marr volunteered to be Bastila's lieutenant.
I, as a Padawan, vowed to do all I could to stop the True Sith.
And, as always, the loyal droids HK-47 and T3-M4 would serve us.

At first, Bastila Shan did not want me to go on this mission. She
said it was too dangerous, that untrained Padawans would be no
match for the True Sith. I volunteered to do the lowest kind of
work aboard the ship, and Canderous Ordo mentioned that Master
Bastila herself had been a Padawan while she traveled with Revan.

Bastila relented, and all of us boarded the Ebon Hawk. Alas!
The same Mandalorian raiders who had captured Canderous were
intent on breaching Khoonda's new hangar bay and taking the ship!
With quick turbolaser fire from Atton Rand, that threat soon ended.

We were on our way into the black void of space with nearly nothing,
headed to fight an enemy that none of us really knew anything about...

04-01-2006, 09:36 PM

Aboard the Ebon Hawk for the first time, I very quickly
learned the story of Revan, the Jedi Exile, and the True Sith.
I asked where Revan and the Exile could be. Master Atton
suggested that they were probably wandering in the realm of
unknown space by now, if they had gone beyond the Outer Rim.
I told Master Atton that we should not discount the possibility
that they could be within Republic space, on planets we knew.

Master Atton said that if anyone wanted to wander and hide
anywhere, then the place would be Nar Shaddaa. We touched
down for a landing in the Refugee Sector and were surprised
by another strange visitor. One with wings and a surly attitude...

"Hey! Hey! Deja vu! Whatcha doing on my landing pad? You here
for the big rally?" I asked what rally this was, and the Toydarian
told us excitedly, "It's the Tretiak speech! No one should miss it!"

Commander Shan, Canderous Ordo, and I went to this "rally".
At first, the speaker, Ula Tretiak, congratulated the people of
Nar Shaddaa on turning their planet into a manufacturing giant,
but then she proceeded to bring out an enormous Hutt in a cage.

He was Vogga, a former crime lord on Nar Shaddaa. The people
around us began to throw garbage at him. Ula Tretiak did nothing
to stop them. Rather, she smiled like she enjoyed the whole thing!

After the rally, the three of us went back to the Ebon Hawk
to warn the others. We told them what had happened, and they
all agreed that this Ula Tretiak woman meant trouble. How much
trouble, we could not say--yet. I told Commander Shan that I
wanted to clean Vogga the Hutt up a bit, but she told me not to.

"The Jedi help the poor and oppressed," she told me, "and not the
perpetrators of injustice. Let him sit there in filth, and learn a lesson."

Nevertheless, I went to ask my own Master, Visas Marr, for advice.
She taught me her special method of vision, and told me to look at
the Hutt through the eyes of the Force. I did, and I bathed him well.

04-01-2006, 09:51 PM

During his bath, Vogga the Hutt told me that Ula Tretiak was
a diplomat from worlds beyond the Outer Rim who had brought
production and exportation methods to Nar Shaddaa, allowing
the planet to become self-sufficient through purely legal means.

However, all was not well. He also said that Ula served two beings
he called the "Sith Sith," who hungered much like Darth Nihilus had.
Unlike Nihilus, they had perfected his art, controlling their appetites
instead of letting their appetites control them. I yearned to hear more.

I asked about Revan and the Exile, but Vogga said that neither of
those two people were on Nar Shaddaa at the moment. I nodded.

He told me to speak to Hanharr, Ula Tretiak's Wookiee bodyguard.
Either that or seek out Mira, a former bounty hunter who wished to
challenge Tretiak in Nar Shaddaa's quadrennial presidential election.

Quickly, I ran back to the Hawk to tell the others. Commander Shan
was skeptical, as I should have foreseen. She said that since Vogga
had once been a crime lord, he could have been telling me things
that were not true. She wished to go see him herself, after putting
me in an intensive cleansing bath. Even washing a Hutt makes you
smell like one! She, Master Visas, and Master Atton left the ship.

While I was in the bath and safely covered with cleansing fluid, I
asked Canderous Ordo about Bastila. He was on guard duty. He said
that he and the Commander had never gotten along, even when they
both traveled with Revan. Both of them had strong wills, he said, and
he disliked the fact that Bastila seemed to have no respect for him.

That was when he told me his secret. As a Jedi, I had sworn to follow
and serve the path of the Light, but Canderous was on the Dark Side.
With his love of war, fierceness in battle, and absolute dedication to
victory at any cost, how could he not be? I felt confused. Was I
supposed to hate the Mandalore now, to banish him from the ship?
I did not, and could not. Instead, I respected him for telling the truth.

Soon Commander Shan returned with news. She had visited Vogga
(who'd smelled far better, by the way,) and then gone to Mira to see
if Vogga's story had any ring of truth to it. Bastila said that Mira told her
if she wanted any information on Ula Tretiak or the True Sith from her,
then Mira had to have a running mate for the election in one week.

Commander Shan then told me something I never expected to hear...

04-01-2006, 10:09 PM

"I've volunteered you," said Commander Shan, "to be Mira's
running mate. You're good with persuasive skills, and together
you shall govern Nar Shaddaa wisely and well." I was shocked.

"What about our mission, to find and defeat the True Sith?" I
cried. "I want to stay with you aboard this ship, to help you!"

"Padawan," said Commander Shan, "I know how you feel. You
have been a great asset to this mission so far. However, the dark
regions beyond the Outer Rim are beyond the point of no return.
We could all perish in the fight ahead, young one, and I do not
want that. You should live a long life, serving others in a peaceful
way. Please try to understand. Mira is waiting for you, Tysy."

I couldn't believe it. Commander Shan was planning to leave me
on Nar Shaddaa, whether Mira or Ula Tretiak won the election. She
was trying to keep me safe, and yet keeping me from the only dream
I'd ever known. I wanted to help save the galaxy. How would THIS help?!?

Now out of the cleansing bath and in my Padawan robe again, I fled to
the eastern crew quarters that I shared with Master Visas to cry.

Jedi are supposed to control their emotions, but I couldn't this time.
Not after this betrayal, after I'd volunteered to be part of the crew.
So what if I was just a Padawan? Hadn't Bastila herself been one?

Master Visas urged me to reconsider. She said that if Nar Shaddaa
fell to Ula Tretiak, the consequences would be very serious. The planet
would lie under the control of the True Sith, but they would have even
more control if Mira and her future running mate were to do nothing.

I wept in Visas' arms, not caring if I wasn't supposed to cry. So this was
it? Playing politics instead of venturing off to fight the True Sith for me?
I knew absolutely nothing about governing a planet. What good would I be?

Master Visas whispered, "Trust in our Commander, Padawan. More than
that, trust in yourself, and in the Force. Death will not come your way."

I told her, "Master...for this cause, for the True Sith to be vanquished,
I want death to come my way. If I must die, that's what I'll do, because
I love this galaxy and the creatures in it more than I love my own life."

"In you I see passion, through my eyes," Visas said gently, "but it's the
kind of passion that saves lives through peace instead of war. With you at
Mira's side, the bounty hunter will become stronger. Wiser. More able to
lead, now that she knows she has the full support of the Jedi behind her.
With she herself being able to use the Force, and a Padawan as her running
mate, there is no way a lowly servant of the True Sith could ever triumph."

Master Visas smiled and left, and I heard heavier footsteps approaching me...

04-01-2006, 10:26 PM

Canderous Ordo, clad in full Mandalorian armor, knelt down in front
of me where Master Visas had so soon been before. He breathed
heavily through his visor, and I could tell that heavy thoughts were
on his mind. "Jedi," he said with an edge of anger. "They're wrong."

"About what?" I asked him. At the same time, I knew what he'd say.

"About leaving you here. Nar Shaddaa is an insignificant and wasted
planet, known for its factories now instead of for crime lords and thugs.
Do you even know what they're building, all of these workers? I don't,
either. However, there's one thing I do know. No one is going to stop
the True Sith through winning some namby-pamby four-year election."

I nodded. I was glad I wasn't the only one who thought that.

"Our only option is action, Tysy, and I don't want to call you Padawan.
You know my secret, and you haven't exposed me yet. Thank you."
I nodded again, and this time a blush came to my cheeks. What was
this pain, this confusion? I was supposed to be wary of Canderous...

"I know what you're thinking. I want to kill Ula Tretiak, and you'd be right.
She is dangerous, and no election is going to stop her from doing whatever
she wants. Unlike Commander Bastila, I believe we must take Ula out
by force. If she serves the True Sith, then one day she'll become one
of them. We must act now."

"Canderous," I said in a choked whisper. "Mandalore. Do we have to kill her?"

In a bold and utterly surprising gesture, the Mandalorian warlord took my
shaking hands into his, covered by metal gauntlets. "You won't, but I will.

"Let's go see Hanharr, that Wookiee you told us about. The one who was
guarding Vogga? He said to speak to Hanharr about working for Ula Tretiak.
Let's find the location of her hideout, unbeknownst to Her Highness Bastila,
and then we make our move. Understand? I'll always be there for you, Tysy."

Through his visor, I heard Canderous take two more deep breaths. He was
very afraid, but not enough to back down. I understood all too well...

04-01-2006, 10:59 PM

"Canderous," I asked him, "are you trying to lure me to the Dark Side?"

"The True Sith are the Dark Side," he said, "and I have no wish to
join them. Would I want to remove Ula Tretiak if I was that evil? I
view her as a threat and a danger to us, not an ally. For the past
fourteen years, I've wanted to go beyond the Outer Rim, to where
the True Sith Empire lies in wait. I want to find it and bring it down.
Who knows what dark future they're planning for the galaxy right now?

"I know you've just become a Jedi. You don't have to come with
me if you don't want to. The Mandalorians are a sturdy race. I've
fought more battles than most of my comrades combined. I'm a
veteran. You can stay here and wait with the others. I'll soon bring
news that Ula Tretiak is dead, along with any bodyguards who protected
her. Hanharr can choose what he wants to do--join me, or his master."

"I--I don't know. Something could go wrong. No Jedi have ever gone
on a mission without at least one other person along. It's not that I
don't trust in your fighting abilities, but what if we get swarmed by
Ula Tretiak's thugs? One person isn't quite fit to fight off dozens of
attackers. I don't want to see you hurt or killed, Mandalore."

"You're actually worried about the life of one stubborn Mandalorian?"

"Da," I told him. "Yes. You were the first one on this mission
that I met who wasn't a Jedi. I'm very--drawn to you, and I don't
know why. If you're going to fight Ula, please take me with you."

"I'll give you a few more minutes to decide, but we must move quickly."

04-02-2006, 07:04 PM

I relaxed my shoulders and exhaled deeply, my breathing as heavy
as the Mandalore's through his visor. "Violence is not the way of
the Jedi," I told him sadly. "It never has been, because we seek
to spread peace through the galaxy instead of war and conflict.

"I know in my head that I should listen to Master Visas and
Commander Shan. This Mira needs an honest running mate,
or else she has less of a chance to win against Ula Tretiak.

"Despite this, I'm inclined to follow you. Commander Shan may
think that Ula Tretiak is nothing but a pawn of the True Sith,
a third-rate servant who can't even use the Force, but even
third-rate servants can wreak irreparable havoc in the galaxy.
I'm as afraid of Ula as you are NOT afraid of her. I, too, wish
she could be 'removed' somehow."

"Consider it done, then," said Canderous, his voice lacking the
softer touch that it had before. "We'll leave immediately. I'll tell
Her Highness that I'm escorting you to Mira, the bounty hunter.
One thing about our culture, the very core of our being, is that
all Mandalorians hate lies. I more than most others. However,
sometimes lying and subterfuge are the only ways to get things
done. I don't want Commander Shan being suspicious. This
mission is only between you and me, and perhaps HK-47. That
assassin droid might be useful if I can convince him to follow us."

I nodded. We both approached the Commander, hiding our thoughts.

"Commander Shan!" Canderous announced, saluting crisply. "I
request permission to escort Padawan Tysy to Mira, the former
bounty hunter. Permission also requested to take HK-47 along."

"Well," replied Bastila with a wry smile. "I'm glad you're finally
showing me proper respect. Permission is granted on both counts,
and I shall program HK to accept your commands during the trip.
He shall not target either of you on this escort mission--only those
who try to attack. Farewell, Padawan. May the Force be with you!"

As we left the Ebon Hawk, I noticed Commander Shan had not
said farewell to Canderous. I suppose to her, respect only went one
way--to her, not from her.

04-02-2006, 07:34 PM

"Interjection: How ignominious! Why does my Master send me
out on a mission of pacifism? Escort duty is undeniably tedious."
HK-47 wasn't happy to do it, but Canderous gave him good news.

"You want to know why I wanted you with us, assassin droid?
Because you can kill," he stated. "This isn't an escort mission.
Rather, it's a 'hit' on Ula Tretiak. She's a threat to us and the
galaxy, and I mean to take her out." There was no denying the
fierce protectiveness in the Mandalore's voice, and the anger.

"Shocked Statement: This compromises my ability to follow my
original Master's orders! However, since Bastila programmed me
to follow you during the course of this outing, I shall. Nothing
would give me more pleasure than to vaporize meatbags--I mean
'organics'. Let's move on. I am anxious to execute your plans!"
I laughed nervously, glad that both man and droid were with me.

Step by step, I felt more afraid and guilty. Not only were we
betraying Commander Shan by doing this, but I felt I was also
betraying the Jedi and the Light Side of the Force. Why was it
that peace was the only way for us? Some people were surely
too dangerous to be left alive for long. Right? Like Darth Malak.
There was no good left in him, in his galaxy-conquering ways.

What of Ula Tretiak? It was then that I made my second decision:

If she yielded in battle and asked for mercy, then I'd spare her.
If I were about to strike her down and she repented, I'd spare her.
However, if she remained hostile to the end, all bets were off.

"Canderous," I said as we neared Vogga's enclave. "We're traitors."

"I know," he said. "In the eyes of Commander Shan and the Jedi,
we will be. However, would you consider us traitors to our mission?
We must find and defeat the True Sith. Taking down Tretiak is our
first step to succeeding in our ultimate goal. We're only traitors if
we join the True Sith instead of fight them. Do you agree, Tysy?"

I nodded. The Mandalore must have seen the pain in my eyes,
even in the dark. He told me, "The greatest victories come with
the greatest price. I know you won't like killing even the peons
that serve Tretiak. That's why I beg you--fight only if attacked."

We moved on. Vogga the Hutt was being guarded by another
thug of Ula's, however. He said Hanharr was taking a break in
the Jekk-Jekk'Tarr cantina. We both would need spacesuits to
get inside. The place was full of cyanogen gas to cater to its
wholly alien clientele. One whiff, and we'd be dead in minutes.

04-02-2006, 08:27 PM

Not only did we have no spacesuits, even aboard the Ebon
Hawk, but Canderous and I also needed a password to get
into the Jekk-Jekk'Tarr. Luckily, in return for his bath, Vogga
the Hutt said that several spacesuits were stored in his former
warehouse. It was now being used as a workers' storage space.
Many factory hands on Nar Shaddaa had jobs making spacesuits
now, so the Mandalore and I were grateful to borrow two.

For the password, I threw up a wild guess, not knowing how
Canderous would react. "When we were at the rally," I told him,
"do you remember the slogan that Ula had the crowd repeat?
'We give our lives to PRODUCTION. Through production, we
gain PROFIT. Profit is the only thing that will give us POWER.'
Perhaps if we say those three words in order, we'll get in."

How, by the Force, was it ever as easy as that? The bouncer
at the Jekk-Jekk'Tarr nodded at the two of us, secure in our
spacesuits, and we lumbered into the cantina like huge rancors.
Just as the thug guarding Vogga the Hutt had told us, Hanharr
the Wookie was prowling around stealthily, watching everyone
with angry and suspicious eyes. Would he expose us right then?

He looked at us, our bodies hidden. "Have you come to see Ula
Tretiak?" he asked, roaring out a disdainful question. I wondered
how Canderous would respond. Again, he surprised me.

"We've come to see Tretiak," he announced, "and to assassinate her."

I almost fainted right there on the spot, even in my spacesuit!
The Mandalore may have hated lies, but couldn't he at least have
told one more for our protection? We'd be the ones who'd meet our
deaths unless we ran! However, even more surprises were in store
for the both of us. Hanharr lowered his two Ryyk blades and grunted.

"Even better," he told us, performing a downward-slash flourish. "She
cares not for those such as I, and considers Wookiees slaves. I will
not have my will broken again, and this is what Tretiak wishes to do.
I am one of the few permitted into her secret lair at the rear of this
cantina. I will say I've brought more bodyguards to replace the ones
we have lost. Then we shall attack, the four of us, and finish her!"

Canderous nodded. "Sounds like a plan. I'm ready whenever you are."

As usual, I was a bit more worried. "Let's all watch each other's backs."

"Glad Statement: Oh, glorious day! We shall fight and kill!" HK-47 cried.

Hanharr led the way into the gas-filled tunnels below the Jekk-Jekk'Tarr,
and we crawled through them breathing slowly. Our oxygen had to last
until at least our arrival in Ula Tretiak's secret headquarters. Let me tell
you, navigating through tunnels in a huge, bulky spacesuit is NOT easy!

Neither is dealing with your conscience when you know you might be
making a mistake.

04-05-2006, 09:21 PM

Despite all my misgivings, all the twinges of my moral compass that
warned me to turn back before it was too late, I proceeded ahead.
I followed Canderous in his spacesuit, while HK-47 clunked along
behind me. I expected Ula Tretiak and her guards to be ready for
us, what with all the racket we were making in the tunnels!

Ready they were, and many of them were wearing characteristic
gold-plated Sith Trooper armor. HK-47 and Canderous were quite
busy with their high-powered blasters, and I did my best to deflect
Ula's guards' energy bolts with my lightsaber. Luckily for Canderous
and me, we had time to take off our spacesuits in an outer chamber
before we plunged ourselves into the heat of battle. Yikes, it was hard!

As for Hanharr, he must have ducked behind a guard or five, because
I didn't see him for the longest time. What was he planning to do?

Suddenly, I saw HK-47 and Canderous stand stock-still. Ula Tretiak
emerged, wearing a light-gray Sith Lieutentant uniform and square cap.
"So," she said with a cruel smile. "More underlings to try and stop me.
For whom are you working? Vogga the Hutt, who hates me? Or perhaps
Mira, that former bounty hunter who thinks she can beat me in the election?"

"Neither," growled Canderous, and he started blasting away, rapid-fire.
So did HK-47, but neither of them could penetrate the energy shield
that Ula had cloaked herself with very well. Could it have been a Verpine
Prototype? Those shields were expensive, but also near-best in the galaxy.

Quickly, I threw myself into what I thought was a lightsaber form and attacked.

"A Jedi? Hah! Merely a Padawan, if I analyze your awkward moves correctly.
The Juyo form you wish to learn, do you? If I were you, I'd stick to more
primal forms of fighting--like cutting flesh!" She unsheathed two vibroblades.

Uh-oh! Here I had thought this was going to be a saber-on-saber duel, but
I had forgotten that Ula did not know how to use the Force. Not only that,
but two vibroblades could have a distinct advantage over an opponent who
was not skilled with a lightsaber. I fought against Ula as best I could, but
soon the blood began to flow from my slashed arms and legs. I cringed in
pain, gritting my teeth and swinging my silver saberstaff for all I was worth.

When I thought all was lost, I heard a rumble in the room, like distant thunder.

"Hanharr." There was a pause in our duel. "I was wondering where you were,
you ungrateful beast. Why didn't you protect me? No matter. I'm getting a
chance to prove my prowess against a slave girl who thinks she's a Jedi.
This one bathed Vogga the Hutt, the lowliest service one creature can do for
another. I'll finish her now, and then I'll deal with you. Do you think I cannot?"

Hanharr simply picked Ula up--by the neck, mind you--and started to choke her.

"Jedi!" she cried. "Aren't you going to save me? You spare your victims, correct?"

"If they surrender and repent," I told her. "Yield, Ula. There's more that we need
to know about the True Sith if we're going to stop them. If you tell us what
you know, then we'll spare your life. Not only that, we might trust you enough
to take you aboard our ship." Canderous and HK turned their heads, shocked.

"You think I'd fall for such a trap, lowly one? Never, and---kkkhhhhh!"

Hanharr had gained the upper hand over his cruel mistress. He looked toward
me for a sign--should I let him kill her, or signal for him to let her fall to the floor?

"Your time is up, Sith-servant scum," intoned HK-47, and he raised his droid arm.
Hanharr broke Ula's neck with an audible snap. "Statement: Too easy a death."

Tears were now streaming down my face, from the pain and from my guilt.
The world grew blurry in front of me, and soon I felt myself hit the floor.

After that...blackness.

04-07-2006, 03:45 PM

"Tysy...Tysy? Padawan? Are you all right?"

I stirred and struggled to open my eyes, but they both were very watery.
I saw a red-violet veil, a wet shape through the tears I was still shedding.
Master Visas had one arm wrapped around me, and I felt grateful.

"You've taken a hard fall. Luckily, no bones were broken, and you don't have
a concussion." With Visas' gentle assistance, I sat up on the medbay cot.

"Good! Relax. I'm not going to judge you or think less of you. Simply answer
my questions if you can. Why were you unconscious in the Jekk'Jekk Tarr?"

"I was fighting a Sith Lord," I told her, "or not exactly a Lord, but one of the
servants of the True Sith. Her name was Ula Tretiak. I saw her at a rally.
Canderous, Bastila and I were all there. He and I decided to take a 'hit'
out on Ula to try and kill her. We knew how dangerous she was, Master."

"Didn't Commander Shan ask you to help Mira, the former bounty hunter,
instead?" Master Visas was confused. She hadn't known about our mission.

"Yes, but I didn't go. Canderous Ordo approached me with a different plan,
one that would supposedly take out Ula the 'quick way'. It did." Feeling
a bit woozy, I started to slump over, but Master Visas caught me. "A
Wookiee named Hanharr was the one who actually killed her, though.
Hanharr had been Ula's bodyguard, and he wanted revenge for being
mistreated and thought of as a slave. I fought Ula, too, but she
got the better of me with her two vibroblades." My head was hazy.

"So I see. I'm truly sorry for the injuries you've suffered. However, do
you realize that your refusal to obey Commander Shan's orders could
result in your banishment? You took the path of violence and revenge.

"That is not the way of the Jedi, and Bastila is not pleased with you. Humble
yourself to her, and she may lighten your punishment. As it stands, it's exile
for you, along with time at hard labor according to Nar Shaddaa law. Pre-Ula."

I nodded. Suddenly, I heard a slight roaring. "Master Visas--what's that sound?"

"A riot. Hanharr's been captured by the crowds, and they want to throw him
into the Central Pit of Nar Shaddaa! Most supported Ula, but now she's dead.
I don't know if we can save him even if we tell everyone Ula served the Sith!"

I dashed forward out of the Ebon Hawk. Master Visas and
Commander Shan followed. Where was Canderous, my partner?
I wiped my eyes and saw a terrible picture: Hanharr, being hoisted
on the shoulders of thousands, was edging closer and closer to
the Central Pit.

04-07-2006, 09:10 PM

"Wait! Wait!" I shouted, trying to grab anyone's attention amid the chilling
roar of the Nar Shaddaa mob. As I should have known beforehand, no one
listened. Rather, no one in the crowd was able to listen, as the clamor
of their shouts and screams for vengeance deafened everything else.
They had Hanharr at their mercy, and they weren't about to give him any.

"Slave spit! Slave spit! Let's throw this one in the Pit!" they all chanted.
Even though I had no memory of what happened in the Jekk'Jekk Tarr
after I fainted, I thought some of the people in the crowd must have
captured him. Knowing Hanharr, I also guessed he'd confessed proudly
to murdering his master. Ula Tretiak, in his eyes, did not deserve to live.

That was why the crowd, bathed in a red swath of hatred, thought that
he did not deserve to live either. What in Nar Shaddaa could I do now?

I heard a highly-amplified voice suddenly rip through the crowd's chanting.
"Now! You will all stop this madness. Let the Wookiee down, and do not
harm him." With hot fear, I recognized the woman speaking. Commander
Shan! She was standing next to a red-haired woman, perhaps Mira, at
a speaker's podium. Her face was as stern as a statue's, and as stonelike.

"The Wookiee was not alone in his plot to kill," Bastila continued. "There is
a man here, an arrested Mandalorian, who wishes to face punishment for
his crime. Four years at hard labor he faces, and four years at hard labor
he shall get. Assassination is not the way of Nar Shaddaa. Not anymore.
You've grown stronger than that in fourteen years. Speak now...Canderous."

I saw ten guards, not merely one or two, bring my partner forward. He had
a neural inhibitor around his neck, and as he took the podium and confessed,
my heart broke. I would not let him suffer alone for what had happened!

"Citizens of Nar Shaddaa," he began, "you have been betrayed. Not by me,
nor by the ferocious Wookiee and droid who helped me. Ula Tretiak served
the True Sith." Here, a gasp from the crowd, as if right on cue. "You sound
as if you never suspected it," continued Canderous, "but is that really true?
Hadn't you noticed that her 'production, profit, power' slogan echoed the
code of the Sith? She intended to use all of you, to control you. I did not.

"I believed assassination was the surest way to rid this world of Tretiak,
and thus I enlisted the aid of Hanharr, her most personal bodyguard.
Not only that, I deceived my own commander into sending a droid along.
His name is HK-47, and he is a protocol droid with a sniper's programming.
Together, we three struck down all of Ula's thugs, and then Ula herself.

"Four years of hard labor for me, you say? I'll take it, if only so you'll
release Hanharr. That's all I have to say, as the convicted mastermind
of this assassination plot. Let no one say that the Mandalore failed to do
what he thought was right. He intended to rid you of the threat of a
woman who served the Sith, and that he did. Punish me if you will, but
do not let your lust for vengeance turn you into dumb brutes once again!"

The silence of the crowd was deafening. I, for one, was shaking all over...

04-11-2006, 08:12 AM
Very well written, I really think you should continue the story, although technically Bastila would be referred to as Commander Shan, not Commander Bastila.

04-13-2006, 09:41 PM

The woman beside Commander Shan now took her turn to speak.
"Good people," she began, even though the sentiments of the crowd
were not so good-natured. "My name is Mira. I intended to defeat Ula
Tretiak in Nar Shaddaa's presidential election in one week, but I have
been deprived of that chance. I condemn my opponent's assassination.
Ula may have served the Sith, but that does not mean her death should
have been automatic. Why, you may ask? Am I a fool, you may wonder?"

At this point, she unsheathed her yellow-bladed Jedi Sentinel's saber.

"Fool or not, I am indeed a Jedi. Peace and diplomacy are our ways,
not war and underhanded secret plotting. Since this Mandalorian has
confessed to murdering my opponent, along with a droid specifically
designed for such a purpose, I sentence him to the mandatory four
years at hard labor. The droid I will have disassembled, permanently
put out of service. As for the Wookiee--let him live, and be sent to
the labor camps along with his partner in crime. Even if you do not
elect me as your President, my duty to the Jedi Order still stands."

Coughs and snorts from the crowd. My knees were beginning to buckle.

04-13-2006, 09:49 PM

At last, I couldn't take it anymore. Whoever said living with guilt was
unnecessary, or at least an easy thing to do, was wrong. Canderous
was now a prisoner about to be exiled to hard labor. What kind of a
Padawan would I be, what kind of servant of the Light, if I kept my
mouth shut and said nothing while he faced his fate alone? Begging
the massive crowd's pardon, I wandered my way through it. Commander
Shan and Mira looked at me quizzically, moving back for me to speak.

"I'm guilty," I confessed, cringing at the high-pitched feedback from
the microphone device at the podium. "Canderous, Hanharr, and the
droid weren't the only three in the Jekk'Jekk Tarr. I was there too,
and what makes it worse--I'm a Jedi. A Padawan, actually, but after
tonight, I don't think I'll even be one anymore. It's what I deserve.

"I thought Canderous' idea was a good one. After all, if Ula served
the True Sith, why would it be a bad idea to kill her? She and I
fought a duel, and at the end of it, I said I'd spare her life if she
told me more about her Masters. I even offered to let her come
aboard our ship if she'd join our side. Unfortunately, Ula refused,
and HK-47 urged Hanharr to kill her. For this, and for us, I'm sorry.

"I'm not proud of what I did. Not proud that I broke the Jedi Code,
and not proud that I betrayed Commander Shan and my Master,
Visas Marr. Right now, I'm still crying, even though the tears seem
to have congealed upon my face like sticky slime. I--I wish I could
take it all back, and rewind time, but it's not possible. Have mercy!"

The scarlet-haired Mira turned to me. "In this case, Commander
Shan and I banish you from our esteemed Order. You are exiled,
and you are a Jedi no longer. However, since you have come and
confessed your guilt, you have cut Canderous' sentence in half.
Surrender your lightsaber to us. Will you serve your time peaceably?
The remaining two years that the Mandalorian had are now yours."

"Sdelayu katorzhnie raboty v techenie dv'let," I said humbly.

Commander Shan and Mira did not understand me yet. "Pardon?"

"Dvukh let. I'll do hard labor for the course of two years!" I wept.

01-01-2009, 12:35 PM