Team 3 Run-On
Members: Akatsuki Tamalar, Xan Phraz-Etar, Kell Palpatine Dante, Telum Vas Umbra, Kuro Kogarasu, Zuser Whuloc, Teu Pepoi, Locke Sonjie, Kratus Vahillus, Zakath, Scelestus
* Individuals must have at least 2 posts at 250-words minimum apiece to count as having participated
* Overall each Run-On must have a minimum of 20 posts at 250-words minimum apiece
* Cannot edit a post once someone else has made a follow-up post
* Cannot make consecutive posts; At least one other must have posted after you
All Run-On fiction must follow from weekly fiction posted.
Week 1 Details
* No cure can be found for the Plague
* It is not known how this Plague came to be
* Currently all Journeymen are in Stage 1 of the Plague; Equites and Elders are not yet affected
Stage 1 Details
At Stage 1 the Plague has taken hold, feeding on the Force abilities of infected. As it “feeds” on the infected it transfers some of that energy back into their bodies. At this stage the infected gain +2 to all physical attributes (STR, CON & DEX). Although the ability to summon the Force is fully removed, they do not appear to feel pain in the same way and appear to be channelling the power [CTP] constantly.
Any Force powers used on the Infected seem to reinvigorate them, rather than stop them. The infection takes such usage into itself and adds to its feeding.
The communicator screeched a loud beep. Akatsuki pressed the button to cease the violent noise that shattered the silence of her office. "Akatsuki," Xen'Mordin’s voice was wrought with concern. "There is a problem. It would seem there is some sort of...infection? I'd like for you to keep a careful watch over the journeymen. It seems to be affecting them."
“Ok?” Akatsuki was used to the inflection in Xen’s voice, but this time was different. “What do you mean infected?”
“It’s a…Force infection? A plague? It would seem that the journeymen are getting super strengths. Not so much the Force, mind you, but they seem to be increasing in strength, constitution and dexterity.” Xen let out an audible sigh.
Akatsuki could picture the Emperor at his desk rubbing his temples. “Well, most of our journeymen are good people. I’m not too worried about this infection!” the Rollmaster said, allowing a small giggle to escape. A plague? Xen’s watched far too many Zedword movies…
“Word came from Muz directly. It would seem there was a problem on Lyspair. Trust me, Akatsuki. Just keep an eye on the noobs, will you?” Xen sounded exasperated.
“Will do.” Akatsuki responded. Before the communication ended, Nawrhynn was heard stomping up the hall and yowling in his fiercest Shryiiwook.
“What was that?” Xen’Mordin questioned as he’d overheard the ranting Wookiee.
“I think it was Nawrhynn? I’ll get back to you ASAP Xen!” Akatsuki cut the communication.
Looking down the hall she saw the wild eyed Wookiee coming straight for her. She heard a set of growls and grunts that she recognized as her name. The Protector was coming towards her office. Nawrhynn spotted the Rollmaster and punched the wall. The infection had spread to Scholae.
Nawrhynn kicked through the door instead of waiting for the door to slide open. Grunting a protest, Akatsuki realized the Protector was demanding a promotion. With the look the Wookiee had on his face, she wasn’t about to blatantly refuse.
“Sit down Nawrhynn, we’ll discuss it.” Akatsuki said.
Nawrhynn sat down, still whooping a protest at the Rollmaster. With the door smashed open, anyone that walked by would have access to the office. Fortunately, Kael Fayne was wandering down the hall way and Akatsuki was quick to contact him. The Wookiee is infected! Tie him up with durasteel cables!
Kael slunk into the room and quickly wrapped the Wookiee up in the cable. “Nawr, I don’t want to have to kill you. You’ve been a good friend, and a loyal Scholae member. Something is very wrong!”
The Wookiee barked his wrath at Akatsuki. While it seemed that he’d just assume attack the Rollmaster, Nawrhynn seemed resigned to being confined. Akatsuki wheeled the chair, complete with the howling Wookiee, into the closet and secured it.
“What in the name of Palpatine is going on?” Kael asked.
“Come on, we’ve got to get to let Xen know!” Akatsuki exclaimed. She quickly headed through the remnants of her door and towards the Quaestor’s office.
Commander Kogarasu’s Office
Temple of Plagueis
The Commander sat in his office that was located inside the Temple of Plagueis on the planet of Morroth, listening to the commotion that was going on outside in the halls. The sound of many Jedi running through the hallways was distracting, so Kuro got up and poked his head out the door way to see what all the noise was about.
“What the hell is going on out here?” Kuro growled out at the first passer-by he saw. The Knight just ran right past him and didn't even look back, as if the youngster did not even hear the Equite. Kuro just shook his head and turned around. Just as he was about to close the door, a familiar voice rang out of the crowd. “Commander!” Kuro turned around sharply and saw his Aedile, Kal. “Sir. what can I do for you?” Kogarasu asked. “Your Office, now” The Aedile ordered.
The two men walked into the office and sat down. The look of concern and worry kinda gave the battle hardened Obelisk Commander and uneasy feeling, as if he knew what Kal was about to tell him. “As you might can tell, the temple, as well as the entire Brotherhood has been shaken and an unseen attacker. A plague, of sorts” Kuro gave Kal a confused look. “What do you mean sir?” Kuro asked. “What do you think it means, Commander. The Brotherhood is under a biological attack, its aimed towards the journeymen, as far as we can tell.” Kal barked. “Well what sort of effects is it having on them? are they dying? what should we do?” Kuro asked
Kal stood up and paced the room before stopping and looking out the window. “ Its effecting their strength, and not in a negative way. They are getting stronger and more irritable.” Kuro looked at his Aedile and said, “This is bad. I mean, We can handle a few of them if we need to put them down, but there are so many more Journeymen then there are Knights and above. The numbers alone could do us some serious damage” Kal nodded in agreement. Before walking out, Kal turned to the Commander and told him, “get with Umbra and fill him in with the situation, then gather the men. Plagueis needs Primus Pilus,” and he walked out of the room.
Kuro stayed seated and pondered over the situation. He has faced many enemies in the past, but none like a plague. Kuro got up, realising that he needs to get the team moving, and called his Flight Leader, “Telum, I need you in my office now. Its a matter of some urgency!”
Imperial Scholae Guard HQ
Looking through his comms, the commander of the Imperial Scholae Guard reclined back in his chair. A half drunken cup of caf sat on his desk cooling quickly, but he was too engrossed in the message track that he was receiving from the intelligence assets that were spread out throughout the realms of the Brotherhood.
After reading the most recent batch of reports, Dante selected the command duty officer on his comm unit and said “Put all Force users on alert to this virus. Research suggests that it only affects those who show sensitivity to the Force. “
Next, he contacted the Emperor. As soon as the vidscreen showed the Emperor’s face, Kell began his warning. “Sir, I have our units on alert for both internal and external threats due to the new virus being spread throughout the Brotherhood.”
“Excellent…” the Emperor responded as a wookie’s roar could be heard in the background. “We already have had the outbreak begin in the house headquarters complex.”
Dante nodded in response. “Luckily, none of my soldiers is Force sensitive enough to contract the disease. Anyone who has had any sort of sensitivity is pulled from their recruit company during training and sent to the Shadow Academy.”
“Well, make sure you have the perimeter secured. If this continues to get worse, we might have to have some of your units keeping us IN instead of keeping the enemy OUT. Keep me informed of any changes.” With that said, the Emperor disconnected the call as more
Flipping the comm switch to the CBRNE unit, the Field Marshal asked the question that everyone wanted to know. “Colonel, is there a w ay to stop the spread of this plague?”
“Not at this time, sir…. I have three different research teams trying to figure out this virus, but it seems to actually be a weaponized version of the regular flu virus. It seems to be mutated from a strain that hasn’t been in the galactic population for millennia though.” The researcher continued after he gave Dante a second to let that information sink in. “You might also want to know that the original strain had a long incubation period and a high mortality rate.”
“Keep working on it...” then he flipped the comm unit off. The equite leaned back in his chair and began the work of trying to contain yet another crisis.
2 hours after confirmed infection breakout
“Continue forward, Vahillus. This one shall take the right flank,” the massive Barabel Qel-Droman hissed to his human companion, before vanishing into the dank darkness that surrounded them, cutting them off from physical sight of each other.
The cyborg Templar continued forward, his E-11 rifle raised in a ready position, his pair of mismatched eyes roving over the space in front of him. He and the Barabel Sith Warrior had been sent on yet another covert task in House Qel-Droma’s main base, after the brutal reclaimation that had occured just a few months previous. Many other Qel-Dromans were doing the same, as Port Ol’val had become quite the hotbed of activity since. Though the main fighting was over, the clean-up, in various forms, was far from complete.
However, this particular mission had gone smoothly; far too smoothly for both the Coruscanti and the Barabel. They had met only light resistance and even that resistance had not been fully coordinated. It seemed as though the entire Port was on the edge of some cataclysmic event, one that would rock the very foundations it was based upon.
Almost as if on cue, Zakath’s com buzzed, causing him to stop and look at it curiously. Spec ops were almost never interrupted once they were in progress and the Barabel specifically was usually left to his own devices. He stopped, plucked the com from his belt with one talon, then opened the channel, gazing balefully down on the small image of Scelestus that appeared on his palm. “Zakath,” he stated simply.
“About time this got through. I’ve been trying to reach you for almost an hour now,” Scelestus ranted and he looked extremely agitated. For one, he looked to be pacing, which was never a good sign. “What the feth have you two been doing?”
“Our job,” the Barabel returned, not breaking eye contact with the miniscule figure.
Scelestus emitted a sigh, which was more a sign of frustration than anything else. “Well, you two will have to quit your job and report back to me ASAP. We have a situation and I do not want either of you compromised by it. It appears as if we’ll need every Qel-Droman we can get.”
At the point in the conversation, Kratus appeared clambering up over a pile of rubble and debris. “Did I hear that right,” he growled when he stopped at Zakath’s side. “You’re pulling us out? After we’re so fekking close to finishing this mess?”
“I don’t have much of a choice, Vahillus,” came the response as the figure stopped moving and looked in Kratus’ general direction. “If I did, you’d finish the mission then return. But the situation is deteriorating rapidly, and I need Qel-Dromans.”
“Then use the Journeymen,” Zakath hissed, tiring of the conversation.
“I can’t,” Scelestus replied, shaking his head. “The problem *is* the journeymen.”
“What the hell does that mean?” Kratus blurted out, his natural eye narrowing.
“It means that they are, to all intents and purposes, incapacitated,” the figure replied. “I cannot make contact, either with them or to Socorra. It’s like the entire net went down. You two are about all I can reach, apart from the Clan Summit, and talking to them is like going up against a duracrete wall.”
“This one needs rendezvous coordinates then,” Zakath interjected, cutting Scelestus short.
“There is a small, burnt out two-story building two clicks South of your position. I’ll have a shuttle waiting for you there,” the Aedile instructed, then winked out of existence.
Both Kratus and Zakath gazed about the area, getting their bearings, before they both dashed off, moving with barely a sound. It wasn’t hard to find the building Scelestus had mentioned, as most of the others were crumbling, or simply did not exist any further. This one, for whatever purpose, had been left mostly intact, albeit deserted.
Instead of rushing headlong into the building to meet their evac bird, the two Equites fanned out to either side, inspecting the building for adversaries. Although their mission was done in technicality, the practical side of it had yet to be completed and a shuttle was liable to attract unwanted attention. Twin pairs of eyes roved over the entire length, breadth and height of the building, noting every wall, window, and doorway within sight.
“Looks clear to me,” Kratus breathed into a short-wave communicator. “What about you?”
“This one notices nothing,” came the brisk reply.
Quickly and stealthily, the pair ran across the small plain in front of the building, ducked inside, and mounted the stairs, all in rapid succession. They moved quickly, again out of the practical necessity of their mission, towards the shuttle’s landing sight upon the roof. They still made sure to scan every room carefully before moving on, as one wrong move even at this stage could still end in utter failure.
Scelestus turned to face the pair as they arrived upon the roof, flanked by two non-Force using soldiers. “Well, it’s about time,” he said softly, placing his hands behind his back. “We have a lot to discuss and I decided it might be more prudent to speak of it in person, than over hologram. Now,” he added, turning back toward the shuttle. “If you two will follow me.”
Xan Phraz-Etar carefully looked around his new office with a curious gaze. Quite an office to have, surely the biggest he’s ever called his own. He liked it quite a lot, the aesthetics were comfortable, chair was relaxing, and overall the environment felt...powerful. Quite an exceptional office…though he was having trouble getting Archangel’s smell to dissipate. Quite a smelly one he is indeed. Since his promotion to Aedile, he was experiencing a major shift in duties and responsibilities. He was used to being in the fray of battle where the fires burn the brightest, but now he was to be confined to an office or starship as he directed others to do what he once did. Yes, this was a great honor to be Grand Marshal, and something he didn’t take lightly…but he sure missed being a ground pounder. Heh…Grand Marshal Xan Phraz-Etar, it’s nice, had a ring to it.
Xan smiled at his thoughts, but was interrupted by the violence going on outside his door. Shouts, screams, and general pandemonium in full swing. The Prelate strode towards his armor and weaponry, always loving an excuse to be in combat gear…and this seemed like a great excuse. Donning his heavily armored second skin, Xan truly felt comfortable again. He then grabbed his DC-15x sniper rifle, checked the clip, and slung it over his shoulder with a grin on his face. He looked for his Shyarn ceremonial blade, but sadly it wasn’t to be found. Where the hell did I put that thing… Xan pondered as he looked around the room. “Ah yes, right, in my desk with my Push-Daggers. The Prelate quickly strode to his desk, opened the second drawer, and equipped the missing weapons. “All set, now let’s see what’s going on out there.”
Xan briskly made his way towards the door as Xen’Mordin’s voice boomed over his office speakers. “Xan! I need you to mobilize Scholae’s defense forces. We’ve got a situation, there’s some sort of force infection. There are riots in Ohmen, and there’s chaos in the palace. Get to my office ASAP!”
“Understood, I’m on my way.”
Well, I guess that solves the mystery. I hope Akatsuki is ok; I’ll need to find her as well. I also wonder if Dante is safe in the Guard HQ, I’ll need to contact them both once I speak with Xen.
Xan Phraz-Etar readied himself as he stepped from his office, closing and locking the sturdy door. He could feel the sense of urgency in the halls of the Imperial Palace…there was truly something awful happening. He made a fast pace towards the Quaestor’s office and tried to avoid any Journeyman in passing. After a short time, he arrived at Xen’s office and strode inside. He surely hoped to see Akatsuki come through that door soon, or he’d go searching for her himself.
…Forms should flow together…peace is a lie…there is only passion…
The man wielding the activated lightsaber bent and twisted in the motions of Soresu and yet something felt wrong. He could not identify what it was. Since he woke up in the morning there was a feeling of loss, and yet an invigorated spirit welled inside his soul. His physical form felt stronger, faster and more resilient. There was no reason for this. He was not channeling or calling upon the Force to do so. Regardless it was there and it was in control. How many hour had he spent this day chanting the wisdom of the Sith Masters? Certainly his mind was honed and prepared for the day. He was, after all a weapon, yet he could not exactly feel the weapon in his hand.
This new feeling, felt different, and yet familiar. Long ago before he unlocked his potential there was this sense that something pushing him beyond his ability to do any physical action. Today seemed like one of those days. He could not reach out and lift an object. Indeed he could not even feel an object. The Sith Pearl within the hilt of his lightsaber did not call at his mind. It did not pull and pry at his mind. There was no temptation to run the pommel into the gut of some unfortunate individual. Nothing guided his actions into double thinking his actions. The sense to think clearly about a situation, as a weapon seemed to fail. His own mind raced, and thought, and could not settle on any one topic.
“Telum, I need you in my office now. It’s a matter of some urgency.” Kuro’s voice rang over the communication unit installed in the hilt of his lighsaber.
After a quick reply affirming his understanding the Sith proceeded to his commanders office. He must have been a bizarre sight. The Dark Jedi Knight ran through the halls of the tower with an ignited lightsaber. The beam caught on the ground and leaving small scorch marks of melted metal forming along his path.
Primus Pilus Commanders Office
There was Kuro standing, or rather pacing in the office. His demeanor displayed agitation. Something important needed to be discussed. The commander did not speak, but did look at Telum, and then at Zuser. The Jedi Hunter must have been in the room for some time. He had taken his usual impatient posture, that bespoke of anxiety mixed with an inability to do something. The room was darker. The lights were not fully activated. The disordered look of the office left the Sith Weapon uneasy.
"Commmander, I must inform you that I am not myself," the Sith began. Kuro promptly lifted a hand to silence his Flight Leader.
The air practically sizzled around the other. As for the Jedi Hunter, there was no crackling. There was nothing. Telum could not even sense the Quaestor's apprentice in the least bit. He wondered how the younger man was fairing. For Umbra this loss or power displacement from the Force must have been a gift or a punishment. Regardless of the constant reminder that he was a member of the galaxy and not a simple nomad from a desert planet, the traditions and myths of that civilization lingered in his mind still. Could this have been what the ancient Builders of long ago warned the People about? This loss of Power? They were gods to us, and yet they lost their godlike powers? No this was something else, and he would find out what it was.
"Commander! What is going on!" di Plagia Vorrac's Weapon demanded.
Akatsuki made her way to the Emperor's office. Why does my office have to be so bloody far from Xen's? Akatsuki was getting strange looks from practically all of the Journeymen she was passing. The Horansi wondered to herself if they too were infected. If this is a plague that progresses, I wonder how long until it spreads to the Equites?
Akatsuki finally made it to the hall and she could've sworn she heard muttered curses being hurled at her. She dropped to all fours to make the final run to the Emperor's office.
Pounding on the door she let out a roar, "If you nerf herders don't let me in...I'll send all of the Journeymen here!"
The heavy lock of Xen'Mordin's door let out a large metallic clank as it unlocked. The door slid open. Xan Phraz-Etar slammed the door shut promptly behind the Rollmaster. Xen was at his desk staring at his holo monitor and rubbing his temples.
"It would appear the situation is far more dire than first believed. Lyspair is out of control, it's spreading to the houses I believe." the Emperor seemed focused on the reports that were pouring in. "What happened in your office Akatsuki?"
"The plague has made it here!" Akatuki said excitedly, "Nawrhynn...he's in my office. I locked him up!"
"Did he attack you?" Xen questioned, "We can take him before the Chamber of Justice!"
"No, that wouldn't help anyhow...But, he was definitely not the friendly Wookiee that he normally is. There was something crazy about him...he seemed stronger...he seemed to be growing rapidly in the Force, I could sense it!" Akatsuki said while nodding.
"I believe Dante may have some ideas. At the least, it will provide protection while we hatch a plan. Besides, with Xan being new to his position of Grand Marshal, I think it would behoove all of us to listen to a Palpatine." Xen'Mordin stated calmly. "Therefore, I believe we should make haste to Dante's office as soon as possible. I can monitor the situation from there and keep everyone up to date. "
Akatsuki looked at Xan. There was a quiet communication between the two Summit members. They'd been on missions together before but nothing like this. Now they had to escort the Emperor to the Imperial Scholae Guard's headquarters.
The Horansi hit the lock and as the door slid she looked over her shoulder at the other two members of the Scholae Palatinae Summit. "For the Empire? I guess? Let's go! Xan, we'll need your flight expertise to get us there." The Horansi readied for what they might encounter. This was certainly not going to be a leisurely journey.
"I have a tunnel that leads to a small flight deck. This way!" Xen'Mordin proclaimed. The three Scholaers ducked into a hidden passage and came out at a small shuttle craft. "We'll take the shuttle, can you fly this craft Xan?"
"Yes sir! I'll have us there in no time!" the Prelate proclaimed as the engines roared to life.
Temple of Sorrow
Sepros, Orian System
“The Orian System isn’t ready for this, “ Locke commented, gesturing at the screens above his and Teu’s heads. “One catastrophe after another. Will these riots never stop?”
One of the screens flickered to a different image, this one showing an abbreviated list of personnel. Teu lifted a finger and pointed at it. “This one is different. In each riot, we have identified Journeymen of the Clan. Whether Acolytes, Protectors, or even Dark Jedi Knights, they are starting riots in the streets. It must have something to do with the plague that the Dark Council told us about.”
“Indeed, “ Locke agreed. “Kel Rasha, Seng Karash, Kar Alabrek, this is madness! It’s spreading so quickly.” The Consul tightened his fists for a moment and sighed. “Are we secure here?”
Teu pulled a headset over her head and listened intently for a few moments. “Yes, for the moment. Wait, no.” Just as she finished, there was a pounding on the door.
Blaster in hand before the snap-hiss of Teu’s lightsaber had finished, Locke cautiously advanced toward the door. “Get security down here, Special Ops, not Foxtrot Uniform, “ he whispered.
Nodding, Teu hung back and whispered into her comlink. Locke continued to advance on the door, as he slowly heard pounding after pounding.
Then it exploded inward.
As he leaped away from the explosion, Locke briefly thought of a thermal detonator, and considered how lucky he was that he had not been closer to the door. Why had his danger sense not warned him of the impending detonator explosion?
Blaster shots began to lance through the dust and smoke, Teu sending each one flying harmlessly into the walls and ceiling with her sapphire lightsaber. While she did so, Locke crept up to the wall beside the door. He watched, waiting for someone to pass through.
As soon as the silhouette of a humanoid figure appeared, Locke leaped forward. He aimed the butt of his blaster for their head, but to the Consul’s surprise a fist came up, slamming into his gut. Grunting with pain, Locke fell to the floor.
Yelling a battle cry, Teu advanced forward, her blade aimed outward. “Stand down!” she shouted. “Don’t make us hurt you!”
The Journeyman - a Zabrak Protector Locke barely recognized - snarled and kicked the downed Consul’s stomach. “I don’t think that’s going to work, “ Locke coughed, wheezing for breath. When the Protector ignored her, Teu was forced to act, raising her free hand and sending a powerful Force Blast rippling through the air toward the young Dark Jedi.
Locke cursed under his breath. That should have been the end of it, but the Zabrak wasn’t even phased. If anything, he seemed more alive, turning and rushing at Teu.
“Back up!” Locke called, getting to one knee and raising his blaster. He didn’t have to tell Teu to move; as his former Master, she had worked with the Krath long enough to anticipate his actions in combat. She sidestepped, just as Locke began firing the old DL-44 blaster he kept with him whenever possible, especially in the “safe” confines of his own office. The Yuuzhan Vong war had taught him that safety was often an illusion.
The first shots went wide as Locke caught his breath, but then the Krath’s breathing stabilized and his shots began to meet their mark, catching the Protector in the back. One, two, three, they hit, but rather than laying on the floor, the Zabrak was only mildly injured. He still rushed for Teu, who deftly stayed just out of reach, dancing away. Locke knew that her time as Rollmaster had given her a certain affinity for the Journeymen of the Clan - she would be the last to want to hurt them.
“I don’t think peace will work, Teu! Just kill him!” Following his own direction, Locke got to his feet and charged toward the Journeyman’s back, igniting his own sunfire blade. The Zabrak growled and turned upon hearing it, raising a fist to strike at Locke again.
This time, the Consul didn’t even slow down. In two quick motions he removed the Protector’s forearm and then stabbed through his chest, panting and standing over the Zabrak as he fell. “Why? Locke breathed
The Zabrak spat up at his Consul. “You brought this curse on us!”
“I didn’t do anything, “ Locke stated plainly.
“Yes you did! You must have! If it wasn’t you, it was Macron! You’re a fool for trusting that mad alchemist. An ignorant fool!” His head slowly swiveled, staring at Teu. “Or maybe it was you! You know so much about the Journeymen, you’re the only one with access!”
“What was us?” Locke asked quickly, cutting through to the point. “What happened to you?”
“You know!” The Zabrak croaked, the life force quickly draining out of him. “The Force, I-”
Falling back, the Protector spoke no more, his eyes glassed over with the eerie shine of death.
“I’m sorry, Teu, “ Locke said, extinguishing his lightsaber.
“It’s alright, “ the Exarch replied quietly. “It was necessary.”
“‘The Force?’ He must be talking about the plague, but I don’t quite understand it, we need more information. Get Special Ops on it! We must secure the Temple and get in touch with the Dark Council at once! I want all Journeymen either outside the walls or safely secured until we get a handle on this situation, and then we can worry about the rest of the system. We can’t do any good if we’re fighting here.”
“Right!” Teu answered, the energy back in her voice. As the Obelisk Proconsul began issuing orders through her headset, Locke watched the entrance as Dlarit Special Operations Group personnel began to file in and erect a barricade. It was the third time the Consul had found himself fighting for his command center in recent months, and the second in which the fighting had come all the way to his office.
“We must end this quickly, and put a stop to these games!” Locke growled, slumping into the chair behind his desk. He had a feeling, however, that their troubles were just beginning.
This conflict was far from over.
Commander Kogarasu’s Office
Temple of Plagueis
Kuro snarled at Umbras lack of respect. “I'll explain in due time. Right now, we need to get to the Dark Hall on Antei” Kogarasu looked over to Zuser. “Can you take us there?” The Commander asked. Zuser didn't say a word, just had a blank stare. Kuro, in a blink of an eye was behind their Pilot and had his arms around Zuser’s head in a sleeper hold. In just a matter of seconds, the Jedi Hunter was out cold and fell to the floor.
Telum Vas Umbra quickly ignited his saber and shouted at his Commander. “What the hell is wrong with you!” Kuro glared at his Flight Leader and told him, “Calm down and put away your weapon, Knight. Zuser was infected. There is a Plague of some sorts going around, A biological weapon if you will.” “Thats still no reason to take out your own man!” Umbra shouted and took a threatening step to his Commander. “Bad move” Kuro said as he called on his Berserker rage and threw the Knight against the wall. Kogarasu continued to pulsate force push on the Flight Leader till he was about pushed through the wall.
Kuro stopped when Telum stopped resisting, and his unconscious body made a thud as it hit the floor. “Well great, now I have to carry both of them. It was fun knocking out the Bantha Jockey” Kuro thought to himself.
Primus Pilus Hanger
Kogarasu was a sight to see, carrying his Flight Leader on one shoulder and his Pilot on his other, walking through the wall ways to the hanger. Kuro arrived at the Chaser and dropped of Zuser and Umbra in the cargo hold. Kuro climbed into the cockpit and started the engine and looked back to the sleeping Primus members. “I can't imagine the headaches yall will have when you wake, but with yall asleep, who knows what could've happened with yall alone with a Dark Council member.
Hangar bay 1
The Chaser landed and Kuro got out and stretched. Locking the doors, Kuro walked around the Hanger to see if anyone he knows have arrived yet. “Even though i'm not a fan of any other house of clan other than Plagueis, I would like to think that everyone else will want to see the Councils safety."
Teu glared at the wall as she stood there for a moment, her breath calming down slightly from the recent fight. Rarely did she find herself so involved with conflict; she tended to avoid it if she could. However this battle was not one she could avoid. Reports were flooding in from all over the system that Journeymen were rioting and attacking the older members of the Clan, all claiming the same thing that the older members somehow ‘stole’ their Force powers.
And the reports weren’t just from Orian space, the same reports were heard from all over the Brotherhood and that is what scared the Exarch the worst. How were they going to protect themselves from something like this?
Behind her she heard footsteps and turned to look at Locke, she watched him carefully using the Force to sense his current state. “I don’t think this will be the last attack they try Locke.”
“No, I know just keeping them out of the way allows us time to get the situation under control.” Locke came to stand beside his second in command and former Master. “What’s interesting on the wall?” trying to lessen the stress with a bit of humor at the woman’s odd behavior.
Teu’s lip pulled upwards. “Just looking at it,” she turned to look at the man for a moment. Her gaze was dim the usual humorous glint was lost. “I'm tired of all this infighting. First we had the revolt and then we had the war and now we have Journeymen attacking their brothers.” Teu closed her eyes trying to get control of the anger that was threatening to bubble over the top. “The plague is causing dissent and I fear the Journeymen aren’t going to be the last infected.” Teu turned suddenly, the Force lit up strongly as she struck the wall with her right hand, just as quickly it dimmed.
“Better?” Locke quipped, he understood why the Exarch lashed out, but he still didn’t feel it was necessary to cause unneeded injury to oneself.
“No. I won’t be better until whatever this is, is figured out and finished. I don’t want to fight those I consider my brother and sisters.” Teu brought her hand up to look at the wound she caused. Blood seeped out of the wound slowly, the knuckle bloody. The pain did not seem to faze her though. “I am trying to figure out if the rest of the Clan will eventually be infected and if so when and how fast this spreads…it seems to be fast moving but I don’t know.”
Xan Phraz-Etar sat comfortably in the pilot’s seat as the engines roared to life. The controls were familiar to him, as were many of Scholae’s various vehicles and shuttles. Xan then looked back at the two Summit members with a grin on his face.
“Might want to buckle up, this might be a bumpy ride. We’re aware of the situation on the ground, but the air might be just as bad.”
Akatsuki and Xen’Mordin reluctantly sat down in their seats, buckling up and peering out the viewports near them. The Obelisk ignited the thrusters and shot the shuttle into the air with haste. They had to make it to the Guard HQ to link up with Dante, and formulate some plan of action on how to beat this outbreak. Xan sighed as he saw smoke rising in billowing black chimneys from blown out buildings…he didn’t like the sight of his home being broken down like this. Aside from that, the sheer thought of the Brotherhood as a whole being in such chaos slightly unnerved the Prelate…causing mixed feelings to well inside of him. It mattered not, Scholae Palatinae would overcome…no matter what happens. Xan pushed his thoughts aside as he heard Akatsuki and Xen’Mordin speculating at the damage down below.
“This is…unacceptable. Riots in Ohmen City? Journeyman destroying our home while terrorism spreads throughout the city. Our own dying out there…like a damn civil war. Simply unacceptable!” Xen’Mordin said while rubbing his temples.
“It’s horrible what’s happening down there…we must take action soon! I mean…look at those buildings and the fires glowing through the city!” Akatsuki said as she peered through the viewport.
Xan Phraz-Etar agreed with the statements. It was truly unacceptable, and something that made his blood boil. Scholae Palatinae should not be fighting ourselves, but rather fighting others…For the Empire!
Xan maneuvered the shuttle smoothly through the warm Judeccan atmosphere, being careful to avoid any areas he thought to be dangerous. As they made their approach to the Guard HQ, the Obelisk looked back and caught Akatsuki’s gaze. Smiling, the Prelate winked at the Horansi, displaying the special bond they shared.
“We’re here folks, safe and sound.” Xan said as he landed the shuttle. “The area is secure for now, but I’d advise we not waste the opportunity of not getting shot at. Let’s go find Dante.”
“Agreed. Nice flying Xan; good for an Obelisk anyways.” Xen’Mordin said with a smirk.
Akatsuki laughed at the exchange. “Come now you two, let’s not waste time. Let’s go! Aroooooooo!”
With that, the Scholae Palatinae Summit exited the shuttle, and made their way inside to find Dante.
36 ABY Landing at Antei
The sedative had worn off, and his mind had returned to him. There was still something missing. The darkness called to him, yet it was not death, but it felt of absence. This feeling begged for retribution.
"Good you are awake," Kuro looked at his flight leader.
The look Telum gave was one of immediate distrust for the commander. This behavior was reminiscent of when this nomadic Tusken first arrived. However, this was slightly different. The Sith Weapon felt something new, and it coursed throughout his body. A new pulsating pleasure incensed him.
"We must go to the dark tower here at Antei"
Telum contemplated the idea. He moved with a renewed vigor. This Dark Jedi casted off waves of anger, loathing, and discord, yet for what purpose? It didn't fuel his ability to draw on the Force. Something else pushed him forward. A clawed personality became the stalking killer of nomadic peoples.
This plague pushed at him, and in this new mindset he found another he could call upon: Zuser
"Greetings Jedi Hunter," the grin broadened. "What you feel must irritate you to no end. Together we can make our superiors pay for their abuses against the journeymen. To do so we must be united are you with me? Zuser?"
The Jedi Hunter looked up at the man, and for a second could see him as if there was no mask on his face. " Today you become a Hunter of Dark Jedi" Telum chuckled. " What say you? What to take down some of our betters?"
"Indeed let us do thus," Telum grinned. Dark and brooding whims fluttered about his mind. A possible chance to destroy Antei from the inside gave him a biding pleasure to do ad he was asked.
Hanger Bay 1
As The Commander of Plagueis's Blade was pacing back and forth, waiting the rest of Plagueis to show, he heard talking coming from inside the Chaser. Kuro walked into the cargo hold to see Telum awake and talking to Zuser, to prevent anything that could hurt him, the Dark Council or anyone who should come up to them, he tightend the bindings that held them.
"Umbra, I dont know what your planning, but your not in your right mind. Its just the...." Kuro was cut short from a sharp pain in his gut. "You...I dont know..." Kuro hunched over holding his mid section. Telum and Zuser both looked at their fearless leader crippled in a strange pain. "Dont fight it, Its the truth you feel. Embrace it!" The Flight Leader yelled out.
The pain only lasted a matter of moments, and then the strange thoughts filled the Commanders head. Kuro was able to fight most of it but the feeling of betrayal of his leadership and vengeance was just to strong for the skilled and powerful Templar to hold off.
"Oh this is nice" Kuro said in a sinister tone. "I will free you two, but if you try anything, I will not hesitate to kill you both" Kuro said with a eerie chuckle.
Kuro, his Flight Leader and Zuser stood outside the Chaser waiting for more to show up, but impatience grew in the 3 infected warriors of Plagueis. They are a ticking time bomb, ready to make the Council hear and fill their wrath.
There were plenty of screams, the hollow howls of loss and regret mixed with a slight chuckle of freedom. Insanity must surely cause such things. It was everyone else that had a problem. Here before him was a man, Kuro a common human and not even Sith. Why should Telum bother to listen. Other than the immediate benefit of killing the bastard at the earliest chance. It could only be said that his Commander held secrets, and those secrets came from Vorrac. At the deepest level of the Truth existed that simple fact. This weapon created, no, Forged by Vorrac would be the weapon that would kill the Last Son, and in the process kill all that had received any training from him.
"My plans Kuro, only include the death of my maker, and all that have learned from him. I mean to destroy his very image. However, that is secondary Commander, what is it we are doing here?"
"As you know this plague is now affecting me. I am certain that those here high up in the dark tower know the secret. It must be on Antei that the plague began."
The effects of the plague had begun their painful coursing through the Commander's body. It became apparent even to Zuser that he was no longer an instinctual target. Reasoning began to sink into the Sith Weapon.
"Wait a minute, you mean to tell us that you are feeling different?"
"That is exactly what I am saying."
"This Plague started to affect the lowest of us first. The Summit of Plagueis must have found out something long ago, long before me a Dark Jedi Knight, and Zuser a Jedi Hunter even caught it. This began at the lowest level."
"What are you getting at Umbra?"
"Commander, this is could only be designed by one person, the one that would get it last, unless he is immune to it."
"Do you blame the Grand Master?" The quite Zuser asserted.
"Who else than the Muz could have orchestrated this event?"
Impatience took its hold and more anger poured through the minds of the Plagueians. They waited for the people that would come from Scholae. Most likely they were planing to betray these ones again. There would be animosity between certain members of those waiting and that house for years to come.
Imperial Scholae Guard HQ
With the arrival of the Emperor at the headquarters complex, defenses around the area had been increased with the addition of the Emperor's personal Praetorian Guard that consisted of 4 companies of clone troopers who were specifically designed to protect the current Emperor's life. These heavily armored troopers were stationed at various checkpoints around the command center and a ready reaction force stood by to protect the Emperor at all costs.
As the Emperor walked into the combat information center, Xen walked up to the command duty officer and demanded "What is the current status of this plague?"
Colonel Ferraro nodded and said "Sir... the Field Marshal is awaiting your party in the conference room. He has a brief of the status of the Cocytus system as well as new information from our off world intelligence sources."
"Good... Let's get this moving..." as he was ushered into the adjacent briefing area.
Everyone in the room stood as the Emperor entered the room, and the commander of the ISG said "Everyone... please take your seats..." as he moved to the speaking podium and began the visual presentation. "From what our sources have discovered, the plague seems to have been implanted into the various clans and houses of the Brotherhood through a central location: the Shadow Academy." This drew some jeers and a few hushed comments from those in attendance.
Xen responded with "So you're sure that this is an intentional attack?"
"Yes, my Lord... The bioweapons team has confirmed that it is indeed a created affliction... most probably by a Sith Alchemist" said Kell as he brought up a schematic of the atomic structure of the virus. "From the diagram here, you can see that the virus has been altered to attack only those who have a high level of midichlorians in their bodies. It as if it feeds on this and saps the energy of the Force out of the bodies. Along the way, it also causes madness, delusions, and a number of other mental limitations on the afflicted."
Akatsuki spoke up and said "So what are our plans? Wait til everyone succumbs to this disease?"
"Well that is one reason that I wanted the summit here. Surrounded by non-Force troopers, our leadership will be able to at least have a safe haven from which to handle this crisis as it worsens." Flipping to another image, the Field Marshal said "Our next priority is to send out a combined team of equites and NFU's to gather information and find a cure. I advise that we head to Antei...
"I agree.... take the rollmaster and our new aedile with you..." proclaimed the Emperor.
"Roger that.... the team will liftoff in 2 hours for Antei... Dismissed..." said Dante as he walked over to the members of the summit. “Get your gear, and you should be prepared for some major action as I have a feeling this is going to get messy.”
Blowing his nose for what seemed like the sixth time in the past ten minutes, the Aedile of House Qel-Droma sat at a table with the two other members of his House that he had summoned off of Ol'val. He was doing his best to focus on the datapad sitting in front of him, but the Sith just wasn't able to get his mind to focus. Scelestus wiped sweat off his brow and noted that his skin was hot to the touch. "Must have caught something on the Port," the Warrior mumbled to himself again as he redoubled the effort to make the data make sense. A few minutes of agony later, the cause was abandoned and the datapad sat there. Except, it shouldn't have sat there....it was supposed to go careening across the room, driven by a powerful blast of unseen energy. Scelestus was totally at a loss, his connection to the Force was gone. The Sith had been so engrossed in the datapad that he had simply not noticed the absence of that feeling that was as familiar as a child's blanket. The ever present sensation that signified his ability to command the very fabric of the Universe in the service of the Dark Side had left him. No, that wasn't right, the Aedile served the Dark Side faithfully and well. It would not have simply abandoned him. The only logical explanation is that someone had stolen it.
Paranoia snapped his mind back to the present and Scelestus suddenly remembered the other two Dark Jedi in the room with him. Looking up quickly to see if they were aware of his weakened state the Warrior was relieved to find the were clearly in the same condition. A certain understanding existed between them. A more rational mind would have questioned how this could have been accomplished without the power of the Force, but it seemed perfectly naturally to the fevered minds of the three.
Now it was time to plan revenge...
The Horansi came back to the Imperial Scholae Guard headquarters with all of her gear. The body of the beast was racked with pain. Setting down the heavy bag loaded with weaponry, Akatsuki glared at Dante. Normally I like Dante, but right now, something about him just makes me want to... The thought was cut off by a phlegmy cough that brought up some vile green mucus.
"You alright furball?" the Primarch asked the Rollmaster. "Usually you're a beast, I can't imagine you getting a cold that would wear you down. You look horrible."
"Danks." Akatsuki said through a stuffed nose. "It deems I managed to catch someding." Her snuffled up speak was punctuated by a violent sneeze.
Xan Phraz-Etar entered the office loaded with datapads and notebooks. "I've got all the data on the troops and the Grand Marshal is ready to...."
"Stifle it perky pants!" Akatsuki cut off the Aedile's speech. (it was known that she normally got along quite well with the Prelate) "Are we going to head to Antei or not? Honestly? You both are bugging the poodoo out of me right now!" The Horansi glared at her Housemates. She sneered at both Obelisks through gritted fangs.
"We must keep the Emperor safe, if we...or at least the two of you head to Antei, maybe we can get some answers!" Kell said in a commanding tone.
Akatsuki slammed her massive paw down on the desk, "Listen up Dante! I don't give a Palptine's cloak who your daddy was! You aren't running things here! Either we all go or we all stay!" The desk crumbled under the forceful strike of the feline.
The Rollmaster, who was normally polite and respectful of the veterans (especially the Palpatines) got right in Kell's face. "What say you Palpatine?" the beast growled the namesake as if it were a dirty word.
Kell didn't back down and instead seemingly made his presence larger. "Stand down you noob, you're obviously affected!"
It was then the three Palatineans looked at eachother and realized they'd all been affected. Sweat poured down their faces, they felt ill and were turning on eachother. Telecommunication wasn't needed, these three members had known eachother personally long enough to know something was very wrong.
Akatsuki slowly nodded in a silent understanding with her brothers. "So what now?" she questioned in a chilling whisper.
Post coming soon...
heh, ooops. Can someone delete this post please? I dont know how.
Dark Hall Main Corridor
3 weeks after Infection
After waiting for several hours and coming to the conclusion that no one else from Plagueis is coming, Kuro, Zuser and Telum decided to go on inside the tower. The heavy main door squeaked as Kogarasu pushed it open. Telum pushed the Commander aside to get in front of him. Kuro growled out, "Telum! I will rip you apart if you do that one more time!" Umbra ignored his Superior which was not wise considering Kuro's Berserkr blood as well as the Horizons plague thats now effecting him as well. "Im warning you, you dirty bantha jocky, I will not think twice to tear your arms off and beat you with them." Kuro tries to ignore his raciest tendencies towards the tuskan, and focus on the missions at hand.
"I want to find out what and who, is behind this. I dont like anyone messing with my head" Telum said. Kogarasu looks back at Zuser who still has yet to say a word, just kinda wonders in threw the door way and stops. Kuro and Telum failed to notice what Zuser did due to their arguing. Bodies, lots of body littered the stone floor of the main entrance chamber of the Dark Hall. Kuro wanted to check on the bodies but was concerned for his pilot, Being the first one that he noticed to be infected, Kuro was worried that he may not make it much longer. "Umbra, Look after Zuser, he dont look to good, Ill check for survivors" Telum walked over to the pilot and started to try to get him to talk.
Strange black armored troopers were scattered about the floor, something about the armor was familiar but it was something he has not seen in many years. "These troopers, I think ive seen them before but not for a very long time, and theres no way that they could be what I think they are. Personal guard of..." Kuro couldn't think of the name but he was distracted the other bodies that laid amongst the solders. "These dark Jedi, They were foolish to try to take on such armed solders" Kuro said as he patted his trusted Westars.
The three solders of Plagueis only spent a few minuets searching the bodies for clues when the sound of fighting erupted somewhere in the upper tower. "Alright yall, this might be it! Lets go have some...fun" Kuro said in a sinister tone. Kuro, Telum and the assumed weakening Zuser made their way to a stair case, because taking an elevator is too dangerous. Blaster fire, Sabers clashing with armor and screams echoed throughout the building and only got louder as the three men got closer. Kuro was the first to exit the stair case, and what was waiting for them just outside the stairway made a certain Templar very happy. Kuro tackled the unsuspecting solder. Kuro's eyes turned blood red as he entered his berserk state. Growling and snarling, Kuro, barehanded, ripped and clawed the armor off of the man, and once he got to bare skin, kuro punched a hole threw the chest of the solder. Telum and Zuser ignited there sabers and stood in amaze at their Commanders wild beast like attack,
Kuro got up and stood over the body of the solder and smiled, blood dripping off his hands but they could not savor the moment long because a small squad of the black armored solders entered the room. Kuro quickly drew 2 of his Westars and took a primal beast like pose infront of the, set and ready to attack, Telum and Zuser. "well lookie here yall, We got some more...pray" Kuro said in a eerie tone.
A holoprojection of the Dark Hall sprang to life on the table in front of Qel-Droma's second in command, and the three infected Dark Jedi gathered around it in eager anticipation. Each one had their own private reasons for this venture, but they all shared the same goal. Find those responsible for depriving them of their connection to the Force and have them return it. This would most likely involve wresting it back violently, a prospect that certainly didn't deter any of the men at the table, battle hardened as they were.
Scelestus pointed out a few possible routes of approach to the citadel of the Dark Council. Kratus discounted a few, while Zakath found flaws with others, eventually boiling it all down to a frontal assault. They all agreed that it was a plan so crazy and unexpected that it would have the best chance to get them past the facility's defenses and into the main hall.
Once inside the main hall, the first order of business would be to round up as many of the Council members as quickly as they could. They would try to avoid the soldiers and ancillary staff assigned to Antei, as their fight was not with them, but they would be damned if they let anyone stand in the way of their goals. They planned to isolate the DC members to be able to overwhelm them one by one until they found the one responsible for their affliction. they had no qualms about taking out the Grandmaster himself if that's what it took. Clearly their minds were rapidly becoming unhinged as they considered this a possibility, totally overlooking the glaring truth that probably even the lowest member of the DC could pick them apart like dolls.
Truth was hardly going to stand in their way at this point however, and with their strategy established, the three broke company and went their separate ways, each to prepare for the coming assault as they saw fit. The Sith Warrior would normally meditate on the Force in preparation for such a monumental task, but as that luxury had been denied him, he focused on cleaning and loading the DL-44 that he had with him. Once that had been done to his satisfaction, Scelestus turned his attention to the Echani knives that he carried as a part of his chosen martial art training. Each knife was wiped down until it gleamed like a diamond in the night sky. The next step was to hone each to a razor's edge, after which they were cleaned again. With his blades back in their sheaths, all that remained to pass the time was sleep and pacing.
By the time they arrived and set down on the surface of Antei, the Sith had had his fill of both.
Akatsuki sat there in silence, staring at her two fellow Palatineans. Kell was never one for mincing words, and he'd learned from his father to step back and observe the situation before plunging in.
"It would seem to me that it would benefit Scholae for the Summit to remain safe." Kell said lowly. "Realistically, if something or a group were to come for us, for Xen'Mordin, they wouldn't get past the droids."
Akatsuki nodded. "But Dante," Akatsuki still saw her brother though she was quite affected, "What about the others that are fighting this scourge? Shouldn't we go help them?"
"I'm working on that." The Primarch stated calmly. He nodded at Xan and a Holocron zapped to life. Chaos had broken out on Antei, it seemed that the truth about the Dark Council not offering support had spread. Those infected by the plague were out for blood and vengeance. "Between the Grand Marshal here, and I, we can send quite a number of troops to raid and or secure Antei."
The three sat in stunned silence. Xen entered the office and was miffed they'd not left, "Why have you three lazy...loafing...noo..." He stopped with a gasp when he saw what was happening on Antei.
"It is my opinion," Kell began to speak directly to the Emperor, "That it would be best we hunker down here and just give eachother space. We're all affected. Perhaps we can contact the other Palpatines and those not too far gone to offer them safe haven?"
"Make it so." Xen'Mordin continued to stare at the Holocron.
Kell and Xan Phraz-Etar quickly left for the situation room. They were going to order the troops of Scholae to head to Antei immediately.
"So we're not going to help on Antei?" Akatsuki questioned the group.
"Look at that, Akatsuki! You wouldn't last there three minutes! Besides, the Dark Council is known for covering their own asses! What makes you think they wouldn't turn on the members?" Xen questioned.
"I think they already have sir." The Horansi continued to watch in horror. "Dante's right. We will have to wait it out here."