Chapter 4- The Coronation
Javen was sulking in a room in the Onderonian palace. He’d been there for three days, and his dad still hadn’t said a word to him. He’d been basically just hanging out in the Cantina with Garzulan for the past three days, until his father summoned him. Today, Garzulan was supposed to come into Javen’s room, and teach him how to use Force Sight. A knock came at his door, and the door slid open. Garzulan walked in, being forced towards Javen, behind him was the one and only King of Onderon.
“This guy says he knows you…” The deep bass voice of the King said. “Is that true?” Javen nodded, looking his father from head to toe. He had shortened brown hair, flaked with gray, his hairline was receding, and he had wrinkles on his forehead and face. His eyes were sunken in, but their color was still as vibrant green as the blade of a viridian lightsaber crystal. He also had lines running down his face, obviously from where he’d been weeping over his lost wife. “Alright then…” He turned Garzulan around. “Why do you wear that cloth over your eyes? Why don’t you take it off?”
“No. That won’t be necessary, Garzulan. It doesn’t matter.” Javen said, speaking up. The king glared at him, but didn’t argue. “He has a right to keep what he wants to a secret, father. I don’t care if you were the Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic, I’d still say the same.” Javen said, inclining his head.
“Javen, I don’t care.” Garzulan said, lightly. “I’ll do it if he really wants me to.” He started untying the knot that held the cloth in place. Javen sighed, but decided that the ultimate decision was up to Garzulan. Garzulan slowly removed the cloth and inclined his head high enough for the king to see his eyeless face. The king jumped back, shocked by what he saw in the boy’s face.
“You… you’re an abomination! Leave my palace at once!” The king yelled, at Garzulan.
“NO! He will stay father! Under my command as both a Jedi and part of the Onderonian Royal family!” Javen spat. “However, unless you’ve come to discuss what I wanted to, you may kindly leave my room. I simply refuse to sit here, idly while there are Dark Jedi out there making assassination attempts. I will leave in two days.”
The king arched his eyebrows. “Two days? So your staying long enough for the funeral?”
“I wasn’t aware that I was. However, I suppose we must talk fast then, if the funeral is going to take up a day.” Javen said, coldly. “This is what I want to know… why have you become so… infatuated with me recently? Why are you starting this now, just as I’m about to become a Jedi Knight?”
The king shrugged, however his words contradicted his body gesture. “Your mother foresaw both of our deaths. She knew that they were going to be soon, since she is only limited to so far in what she can see, unlike that of a…” He spoke the next words with great reluctance, and glared over his shoulder at Garzulan. “Miraluka.”
Javen sighed, and rocked back and forth on the balls of his feet. He directed the next sentence at Garzulan, but kept the pretense of talking to his father. “Do you know how long you have?” Javen used his peripheral vision to see Garzulan mouthing the word, tonight
. Javen’s face remained impassive, but his insides shrieked.
“I’m not sure, she didn’t see the exact time that either of us would die.” The king said.
Javen turned his head to watch Garzulan put the bandana back over his eyes, and clenched his jaw. “I’m going… to the cantina, with Garzulan. I probably won’t be back tonight. I need to check on the ship, and make sure Leah’s crew has everything under control.”
His father shrugged, and turned to walk out the door, then turned back around to add one last thing. “I’m sorry I haven’t been a greater part of your past. If I could change anything, it’d be contact with you for the past seventeen years.” The king smiled, oblivious to his impending doom that night. “If you need anything just ask me, and I’ll make sure you get it… even if your half-way across the galaxy when you ask.”
Javen nodded, unable to speak. The king stood in the doorway for a few more minutes, and realized that his son wasn’t going to say anything, so he turned on his heel and left.
“I just don’t understand, Garzulan. Who?” Javen asked. The Miraluka teen shrugged. “Why is the Royal family being picked off, one by one?”
“I’m not entirely sure, but if I may add my own two cents, I do believe it is because your family aren’t followers of the Darkside. One of the oldest Sith families, turned to followers of the Light by one of your ancestors, and I believe now they are getting their revenge because it’s rather small at this point. I doubt that they even know that the king and queen had a child.” Garzulan said, slowly. “I do know that another Dark Jedi won’t show up. They saw the Midnight Hawk land here, and felt two Lightsided Force Users on board this ship, along with several soldiers.”
Javen nodded, wishing that his father hadn’t killed the Dark Jedi that Garzulan and himself had taken hostage. He had so many questions for him, and felt that the three Dark Jedi killed in the Onderonian Palace were connected to the same source. “Alright. But isn’t there anything we can do to prevent this from happening?” Javen asked.
“I’m afraid not, seeing as I have no clue how your father is going to be killed.” Garzulan said. “The most we can hope for is that tonight’s murder isn’t successful , because if it isn’t, the Sith won’t be too happy and they’ll kill the assassin.”
Javen sighed, and kicked at a piece of scrap metal laying on the floor of the Republic ship. “Come on, I guess we’d better not stay up all night, not if we want to be aware of the proceedings tomorrow. Oh, and I got a second bed put in the room, we don’t have to alternate sleeping in the floor anymore. You can choose which bed you’d prefer.” He said, both physical and emotional exhaustion seeping into his words.
The two teenage boys stepped into the room, and immediately began changing from dirty clothes to clean, night clothes. Javen accidentally spilled out the possessions he had in his pack, and stepped on the holocron. The image of Freedon Nadd flickered to life in the room, and began to speak. Both boys froze and then turned to face it.
“Ahhh… you’ve set me free of that black hole twice now, surely you want something this time.” Freedon Nadd said, watching Javen. “Or perhaps your… friend would like to learn a few Dar-”
“Shut up.” Javen said. “I didn’t mean to turn it on. Neither of us want anything you have to offer.” Javen snarled at the hologram of Freedon Nadd.
Garzulan cocked his head to the side, but refused to speak. This confutation was between ancestor and descendant.
“I know you do… young Jedi. All your age seek power, seek to prove they are ready to pass the trials.” Freedon Nadd spoke, sharply.
Javen winced, and picked up the small disk that held Nadd’s image in it when he wasn’t being projected out of it, and turned it off. The hologram of his ancestor was sucked into the void inside, like a black hole sucking everything around it into it’s depths.
Garzulan untied his bandana before speaking. “How long have you had that… thing?”
“I’ve had it for about a week now.” Javen said. “I accidentally activated the darn thing just before I landed on Katarr as well. He keeps trying to tell me that he want’s to teach me something. I just know it’ll cause me to fall to the Darkside though, otherwise he wouldn’t offer it to me.”
Garzulan cocked his head to the side. “I wouldn’t be too sure about that. Remember what I said the other day, how Force powers aren’t related to the Lightside or the Darkside? I still hold on to that belief. It’s just the narrow views of the Jedi and Sith that see them that way. My entire race has seen things that way, and as long as we are alive, we always will.”
Javen nodded, obviously thinking about what Garzulan said. “I’ll sleep on that, and see how I feel about it in the morning. And as soon as we get up, you’re going to teach me how to use Force Sight right? I mean, my father kind of messed that up today.”
Garzulan grinned. “Of course I will… I just wasn’t entirely sure you still wished to learn it.”
Javen and Garzulan both grinned at each other, then climbed into their beds.
“Good night Javen. May the Force be with You, as you sleep.” Garzulan said, yawning.
“Good night Garzulan, my friend. And May the Force be with you as well.” Javen replied, obviously happy that he and Garzulan had broken down the issue of trust in such a short time together.
A few hours later
“Shhh… be quite you imbecile!” A menacing tenor voice said quietly, from behind a black hood. “Do you want him to wake and call his guards on you?”
“No, master.” The mechanical voice of an assassin droid replied. “I only wish to return to you with the job done.”
The black hooded figure disappeared, his hologram retreating back into the comlink in the droid’s free hand. The small, silvery droid opened a small side hatch and shoved the comlink inside, then shut the hatch. The droid slipped into the king’s sleeping chambers, unnoticed by anyone, and pulled out a vile of dark green liquid.
The droid moved towards the bed, as silently as was possible, and opened the vile. It put the cool glass against the king’s mouth, and tipped it upward, forcing out every last drop of the green poison.
Javen woke with a start, in the middle of the night. Sweat beads rolling down both his face and bare torso. His face was clammy, and his skin was snow white. He jumped quietly out of bed, and walked over to his pack and pulled out a canteen filled with water, he took a few sips and then screwed the lid back and shoved it back into the bag. Javen walked back over to his bed, and climbed in it. I believe that it’s just happened, though I have been known to be wrong. Let us hope that this one time at least that I am.
Javen thought to himself, and then slowly drifted back into the abyss of unconsciousness.
Morning came far to quickly for Javen, his sense of being the last survivor of the throne strengthened, as he got dressed. He wore a plain set of black robes for his mother’s funeral, and Garzulan borrowed his only other set of black robes. Both boys and Leah were invited to the funeral, though the boys had the sense of foreboding that the funeral wasn’t simply going to be one body that day, but two. However, they refused to tell Leah when she saw the grim look in Javen’s eyes.
She followed their slow march up to the Palace, just as both of them had expected, pandemonium and chaos was reigning in the place. Servants were running up and down the hallways, looking for Javen. Then one saw him, and slid forward, trying to stop. When he had successfully stopped, he turned and ran towards Javen, nearly colliding with the teenager, but Javen caught him and stood him up on his feet.
“Prince Javen… your father was killed last night! We feared the same had happened to you, and then when we couldn’t find you in your room, we were scared that they had kidnapped you!” The alto voice of the female cook said. Her red hair was tied up in a bun, and her green eyes seemed to complement her hair rather well. Her skin was a few shades darker than Javen’s, as though she had gotten out quite a bit and was tanning. She had on a black apron, over her bright pink night clothing.
Javen scratched his head, thinking about what to say. “Go tell the others you’ve found me. Tell them that I said they need to get back to their stations and not worry about me. I’ll be fine, but our guests will be arriving any minute, and we do not want to give them any reason to think that Onderon is having a power struggle.” The woman bowed, and ran off.
“Smooth.” Garzulan whispered, grinning from ear to ear. “Your first day of giving orders, and you already are thinking about the well being of your people. I must say I commend you on that. Very few would be able to do that, most would be too upset about their own family to think about such matters.”
“Don’t you know by now, Garzulan? I’m a freak… I’m not like normal people.” Javen said, playfully. All three of them busted out laughing, and walked towards the garden.
Javen sat down at the foot of a flower bed, and began meditating. Garzulan joined him, and allowed Leah free roam of the garden. Thirty minutes passed, before Javen felt the first presence of one of the noblemen. He slowly stood up, and placed his crown upon his head. Garzulan stood up, and motioned for Leah to come back and go with them.
Bored with staring at the same vine that had twisted up one of the support beams of the palace, she shrugged and fell in step behind the two boys.
For the next four hours, Javen was stuck shaking hands with nobles and peasants alike, eventually when it was finally over, they all gathered around the newly made coffin of his mother. Most didn’t realize that his father wasn’t there yet, or they didn’t care. However, a few of the greater noble approached Javen and asked. When Javen told them, shock and anger flitted quickly across their faces, before they masked it behind apathy.
The sooner the funeral was scheduled to start, the more people realized that the king wasn’t present. Eventually, Javen grew tired of having to answer the questions of where his father was, and made a public announcement to everyone present. Terror reigned in, and whispers of taking the throne of Onderon occurred numerous times, until Javen shot Force Lightning into the air. All was quiet then, and the servants ushered to Javen’s aid, taking all the guests to the burial place where both deceased king and queen of Onderon would lay, in forever slumber and taking the queen’s coffin to the graveyard.
Javen, Garzulan, and Leah soon followed, making sure that no nobles had slipped through to try and steal from the palace. Javen was soon enough walking on the graves of the long dead rulers of Onderon, the only one that was missing from the graveyard was Freedon Nadd, the only reason that he was of the Royal Family. Javen had his fingers and the heel of his palms pressed together, to make an upside down pyramid. His breathing slowed, considerably and he stumbled forward, taking his seat at the front of the ceremony. Leah and Garzulan sat on either side of him, remaining quiet.
Javen put his head in his hands and sat there, motionless for about an hour. Eventually, a minister walked in front of both the royals resting place, and began to speak. Javen’s head slowly came up, and he watched the ceremony.
Seven hours later…
“Sir, the last of the nobles and peasants have left. What is it that you wish to do now?” The red headed cook asked Javen, not knowing what she should be doing. “If you have nothing planned, the Prime Minister would very much love to talk to you.”
Javen nodded, and followed the cook towards the throne room.
“Ah! You must be Javen!” The same man who had conducted the funeral said, rushing up to shake Javen’s hand. His hair was a bright silvery color, he was rather short, even for an old man. The dark circles under his eyes seemed to be a testament to how much stress he and lack of sleep he had gotten since the queen’s death. The wrinkles on his face, made him look very much like that of a pug. “I’ve heard much about you, my lord.” The man bowed. “I am quite sorry that you’ve lost your family.”
Javen raised an eyebrow, and remained quiet for a few seconds. “Hello, I assume that you are the Prime Minister on this planet. I am not as effected about losing my family, because I did not know them.”
The Minister shrugged. “Please, call me Joslan, and that brings even more sympathy to you. A prince who has never known his parents, and about the time he arrives, they are both murdered.”
“Well, I mean this with all due respect, I don’t want sympathy.” Javen said, somewhat coldly. “In fact, I’d like to be on my way back to the Jedi Temple. Grand Mistress Kanna has given me an assignment that needs to be done immediately.”
Joslan nodded. “Very well, though right now, we are left with a vacuum… if you catch my drift. With no ruler to guide us, the world will fall into a civil war.”
Javen shook his head. “No. I have Jedi business to attend to. I have not the time to stay here and play spoiled Royal br-”
Joslan cut Javen off. “You do not have to remain here, just be a public image. We could cover up your disappearances as you going to Courscant to get the Senate on your side, or for you to visit with the Senator of Onderon in person. If you do not take the crown, war will envelope on Onderon, and eventually you’d have no choice but as to come and stop the uprising.”
Javen considered this. “So what your saying is that if I refuse the crown now, I’ll just wind up taking it later, after tons of bloodshed?” The Minister nodded once. Javen sighed. “I suppose when you put it that way, then I really have no choice but as to accept the throne.”
Joslan grinned. “Good. Your coronation will begin in an hour. Bring all whom you trust. We can not let it leak that you are the actual heir to the throne, otherwise many will seek to murder you, as you have seen with your parents being killed this closely. Most of the guests today assumed that you were a distant nephew of the king and queen, and so they think that you do not have any right to be ruler. But when you are established at ruler, the guards will be sure to crush any resistance before it begins.”
Javen nodded, there were only two people who he would bring to his coronation. Garzulan and Leah, the only two that he trusted with his life. And with nothing more to say between the two, Javen left to go find his two friends.
Garzulan and Leah, sat in two chairs, facing each other. Javen came marching down the ‘aisle’ created between the two chairs, and as he passed, they turned their chairs towards the throne of Onderon. The young man was wearing a set of white robes, lined in gold and royal purple. The Prime Minister approached Javen, a more detailed and beautiful crown was carried in his hands.
“Javen Light, Prince of Onderon, do you swear to uphold the law and do what is best for the people, even if it may cause you to die?” Joslan said, speaking with power behind each word.
“I, Javen Light, do swear by the Force to uphold all laws and do what is best for the people of Onderon, even after death.” Javen said, confidently.
“Then by the power of the Onderonian kingdom, I do place this crown upon your head, and pronounce you gladly as the new king of Onderon.” Joslan said, grinning. Joslan slowly lowered the crown onto Javen’s head. Light gleamed off of both the solid gold crown, as well as the rubies and sapphires inlaid in the crown. The Onderonian Royal crest was facing out towards Garzulan and Leah.