SW:TOR INTERLUDE: FATAL ANSWERS
Entr'acte of an Old Republic Tale by MsFicwriter
ABOARD THE SITH FREIGHTER 'VELOCITY', 1530 HOURS
"Force cages? Really?" I arched an eyebrow at Agent Veka. "I'm not at all surprised." Qyzen Fess and I had both been imprisoned in one, after being hauled aboard this sorry excuse for a space vessel! We'd been locked in stun collars then; now our situation was far worse. If she chose to, our primary captor could overload them. Electrocution was far from a painless way to die. However, if that was what it took to keep my own knowledge of the Jedi Order from reaching the Sith, so be it. I gritted my teeth, anticipating agony.
None came. Instead, the Imperial spy simply smirked and stepped toward me. "You were certainly surprised by our attack, and thus I have the advantage." Her expression read wipe that scowl off of your face,
but I wouldn't.
"Let's see," I began, sneering. "What do you want to know--or has Master Karos already told you everything? I'm sure you're already aware that our Temple's on Tython, and if you wanted to, you could stage an attack. I don't know what's stopping you, except laziness or apathy. Which is it, hmm?" A subtle current suffused itself throughout my skin, and I took a deep breath.
"Brave words for a Jedi, but foolish ones," Veka replied. "Yes, we know the location of your waste of a headquarters, and yes, we will attack. However, we're waiting for the optimal conditions. Have you ever played dejarik?"
I nodded, adding: "I don't always win, but I do fight to the bitter end."
"Then you know how important positioning every one of your pieces is."
"Let me guess: We're pawns, and sooner rather than later, you're going to sacrifice both of us for your own ends." Silence from Veka. Good. Steady...
"That's what you do, because you're a Sith. Your tactics are cruel; your moves are coldly calculated, and your ultimate goal is victory. However, before you achieve it, you must make sure we don't checkmate you first!"
I heard a hisss-isss-isssss
sound erupt from Qyzen Fess in the other Force cage: he was laughing. However, in the middle of his merriment, Agent Veka threw a switch that made the barrier of his holding cell glow white. I heard him roar like the most primal beasts of the field, and smelled roasting reptilian flesh. Through the Force, I roiled in his excruciating pain. Clenching my fists hard, I meditated, trying to calm him and protect his mind. It wasn't long before he crumpled to the floor of his cage. I gaped, soaked in sweat.
"You murdered him." My armpits were ice-cold. "All because he mocked you!"
"You have learned nothing, even from the Jedi, if you believe that." Veka's voice was a whisper. "You
were the one who mocked me, Padawan, and I do not take insults lightly. Thus, I had no other choice but to punish you."
"And slaughter the innocent?" I stifled my tears. "Another Sith tactic." I sank down in my own Force cage, weeping: "Qyzen, Qyzen, I'm sorry..." At once, I berated myself for my tears. There is no emotion; there is peace. Why can't you ever, ever remember that? The Trandoshan is one with the Force now, so why are you blubbering when you could join him very soon?!
Veka curled the fingers of her right hand into a fist, choking me lightly. "Now: You will say the first thing that comes to mind. Do not lie; I will sense it."
"Tamara?" Why did I think of her, of all people, at this moment?
"She is imprisoned in your Temple, yet will soon embrace us. Your blind Jedi Council will exile her, and then Tamara shall pledge loyalty to the Empire." When my head jerked up in horror, the Agent smirked once more. "I look forward to seeing who'll survive the Sith trials. You two will duel again."
"Master Yun?" The thought of any duel, even with Tamara, barely registered.
"A bargaining chip, acquired at a heavy price. He slaughtered six of our best operatives, one a powerful Juggernaut, before we finally took him down. He's going to be a valuable asset as we cement our stranglehold on the Republic."
Agent Veka looked confused, but that momentary lapse in concentration was all that was needed for her to be flung and crushed against the opposite wall. I heard her spine snap, and saw her head jerk forward, before she plummeted to the floor with a sickening thud.
A Sith warrior, the one who had fixed his gaze upon me--and fixed me
with his gaze--now looked at Qyzen.
"I can spare his life." He flipped the Trandoshan over onto his back and tilted his head. "Decide."
Crushed with guilt, I didn't even consider that Qyzen wouldn't want to. "Yes!" Within moments, a spark of life returned to the Trandoshan's form. A raspy avalanche of breath rushed its way out of his lungs. His yellow eyes widened.
"My--my Score has been set to zero!"
he hissed at last. "All of my kills have been for naught!"
Then he noticed the warrior, reassessed his position in the Force cage, and forced himself up onto his knees. "All of your enemies are now mine," he said to the warrior, coughing up a bit of blood. "My lord, the Padawan and I shall eliminate them, if you command it. This I swear upon my life, which you have restored!"
The Sith did not answer. His face was concealed behind a mask, as it had been during our first encounter. All I could see were his glowing eyes. Was he human, Twi'lek, Rattataki, or even a Pureblood? I did not know. Nevertheless, my desert-dry mouth flew open, whispering a greeting: