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Old 04-28-2006, 08:14 PM   #2
Walruseater
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Alrighty, next chapter. Actually, I consider that first one to be more like a prologue.

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Chapter 1:

Kyle's Hope


Kyle Katarn walked away from the Tomb of Marka Ragnos. He felt like a complete failure, for he had lost both his students, and Jaden now had the Sceptor. Because of this, Tavion's defeat meant nothing. It should have ended there, in the tomb of Marka Ragnos, but it didn't.

He sighed. I should have just killed her, he thought grimly. He had fought her with all of his strength, yet part of him held back as he called out to her while they fought. He remembered two instances during the fight when he had her, where he had pulled her lightsaber out of her grasp and held her in the air with a Force-grip. But he had eased her to the ground, loosening his grip, hoping to make her see reason. But all she saw was weakness, and she had attacked him relentlessly.

He ignored the other Jedi as he made his way back to the shuttle. There were only a few remaining Jedi on Korriban, because Jaden had slain many of them, along with Tavion's loyal followers. He just climbed aboard a shuttle and took a seat, not speaking to anyone. He just wanted to be left alone, to think.

They were going back to Yavin IV to tend to their wounded survivors, but as soon as his buisness at the Academy was finished, Kyle was going to leave. He had already told Luke that he was going to find her, and take care of this himself. It was his responsibility after all. He trained her well, and he should have seen this coming. There had been, perhaps, some part of him that knew all along she was headed down a dark path, but he denied it.

And now, she was a new Sith, running loose in the galaxy with all the power that was stored in the Scepter. And, because of her, many good Jedi were dead.

He was very silent and thoughtful during the flight back to Yavin.

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"Master Katarn," Jaina, the young Zabrak Padawan, said as she entered Kyle's quarters. "I'm sorry to disturb you, sir, but there's someone here to see you."

He was about to say he didn't want to be disturbed, but then he saw who it was. "Jan," he greeted. Her presence brought a smile to his face, and he went over and embraced her, giving her a light peck on the cheek. "How are you?" he asked. "I haven't seen you for a few weeks."

"Oh, I'm fine," she said. "I've been helping Mon Mothma." She sighed softly. "She really hoped that Tavion's death would be the end of this mess with the Disciples of Ragnos and the remaining Reborns. Now that there's a new Sith on the loose, she's beginning to feel pressure from the Republic."

Jan's words his Kyle like a knife. "And it's all my fault," he murmured.

She stared at him, then gently took his hand in hers. "Don't say that," she said quickly. "When you first introduced Jaden to me, I thought she was a very sweet girl, one with potential. And I think that sweet girl is still in there somewhere. From what Luke says, she's been consumed by anger, but perhaps she can work her way through it."

"That's easy to say," Kyle sighed, "but she is a Jedi. When a non-Force user is consumed by anger, they might pick a fight or snap at everyone in sight, but even if they hold onto their anger, they can't do as much harm as a Jedi. For a Jedi, the anger is more addictive, because it fuels them with the power of the Dark Side once they open themselves up to it. And it's hard to let go of that power."

"So, you're going after her." Jan said. It was a statement, not a question. "I'm coming with you."

"Jan, I can't let you. The risk--"

"We've been on risky missions before," Jan said. "We've always pulled through."

"She's powerful and she's dangerous," Kyle argued. He still remembered the day when he thought she was dead. He had nearly gone over to the Dark Side himself when Tavion taunted him, telling him that she and Desann had used her "death" as a way of finding the location of the Valley of the Jedi.

Maybe I should have killed her, there and then, Kyle thought. Or at least I shouldn't have let her go. He sighed. There was no way he could change the past, and if he could have faced that moment again, he wasn't sure if he could have done anything differently.

"You'll need a pilot," Jan said. "You're going to need someone who can be ready to get you out of danger instantly should you run into trouble." She put a hand on his shoulder. "This will be just like old times."

"Yeah," Kyle said with a deep sigh. "Except this time, we're on a mission to stop a... friend."
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