Balance of the Force
Guardian Syrus Korodin has decided to share his wisdom with the young JH Panzerus. In this runon, Syrus will attempt to teach Panzerus his philosophy of control and balance and, in turn, Panzerus will reciprocate with passing on some of the Sith's ancient knowledge.
Intro by Syrus Korodin...
Syrus sat with his legs crossed in the passenger area of a Tyderion Class Imperial Shuttle, totally engrossed in a novel he had just downloaded from the Coruscant Holonet. His eyes absorbed the text one word at a time, savoring the language like one savours fine wine. He did not touch the datapad; it scrolled down on its own accord. He continued reading for almost half an hour until he heard a grunt and a strange, scraping noise. He looked up from his datapad and looked across the meter wide gap separating him from Panzerus. The young lad had fallen from his sitting position and his horns had scraped the metal of the craft. Syrus chuckled and put his datapad down. Burning red eyes scrutinized the sleeping youth with approval.
Syrus watched the young Zabrak with a smile on his face and a glint in his eyes. He remembered the day when he had first met this spry youth. They had chatted much together through the power of Holovid but they only met in person at the Morph Hall. The battle was stupendous and Syrus now had a solid amount respect for his friend. They had formed the bond only formed by those who cross blades in anger. In many ways Panzerus reminded him of himself. He reminded him of a near-forgotten youth in the Jedi Temple, more than a century ago when he was still young and stupid. He saw in Panzerus the ambition and raw talent that would lead him to greatness. Sith High Commander? Mayhap. The smile broadened a little.
Syrus was still a Guardian in the eyes of the Brotherhood while Panzerus was a Jedi Hunter. Technically Panzerus was of a higher rank. But Panzerus was young and did not have the wisdom that Syrus had accumulated over his many years wandering the galaxy. He would give as much of this wisdom as he could to the young Sith while he still could. That was why he had decided to take the youth with him to Korriban. As they were in different clans they were now separated by light-years of distance. Nevertheless Syrus had become somewhat of a mentor to young Panzerus. The idea was to teach Panzerus some of the arcane knowledge of the Krath to augment that which would be taught to him by the Sith. Panzerus, although desiring to teach Syrus something in turn, had little to give for now. Syrus could pilot just about any craft in the arsenal of the Brotherhood and the New Republic. There were times when Syrus wondered why he hadn’t taken Sith as his Order.
Syrus pondered these thoughts for a few moments before suddenly deactivating his datapad and stowing it in his robes. He rose from his seat and, silent as a shadow, entered the control room. He entered a few commands into the ship’s computer and it responded with a soft beep. An image of a trajectory appeared on the screen.
“Arriving at destination within 38 Minutes,” said a melancholy voice that came from the depths of the computer.
Syrus nodded and sat down in the co-pilot’s seat. He sat there and decided to meditate on what he would show Panzerus when they arrived. Within seconds the entire ship was silent save for the shallow breathing of two Zabrak.
Panzerus awoke feeling completely revitalized, as though he had been immersed in bacta. He looked within himself and searched his feelings. He was at peace at the moment. All the better to reach his center of balance. Hatred can cloud judgment, and he wanted his thoughts to be fresh and open-minded.
He stretched, drank half a bottle of Juma Juice, and then went into the cockpit. They were now only minutes from arrival and would have to initiate landing protocols. Panzerus was a young and inexperienced pilot as he had had little time of late in which to practice his flight skills, but he needn’t awaken Syrus to land the shuttle. Panzerus scanned the surface of Korriban for a point of high altitude. At last, his scanners revealed a colossal dormant volcano just 3 Kilometers from the Valley of the Dark Lords. It was unnecessary to stop at the infamous burial site of ancient Sith, but Panzerus decided to do a fly-by anyway. He set a course that took them over the Valley of the Dark Lords and then to the base of the volcano. After the necessary data was added to the navicomputer, Panzerus leaned back in his chair and watched the planet drift closer and closer in the viewscreen.
The shuttle gave a slight rumble as it passed into Korriban’s thin, arid atmosphere from the vacuum of space. Panzerus felt a familiar presence in the Force and heard the faint whisper of a door being opened. He swiveled in his seat and greeted his friend. Syrus gave a friendly nod in return and stood next to Panzerus. A strong bond had been formed among the two Dark Jedi and it had become much stronger since their last bout in the ACC. Such was their understanding of each other that they could express their thoughts with subtle gestures and facial expressions. But something was different about Syrus…
His robes were different. Panzerus looked him over and realized that their robes were the same. Syrus now wore the attire of a Jedi Hunter. Out of the corner of his eye, Syrus noticed Panzerus’s gaze and when Panzerus realized that Syrus was now a Jedi Hunter they both smiled.
“Congratulations, my friend,” said Panzerus.
“Thanks,” replied Syrus as the shuttle flew over the Valley of the Dark Lords.
The two Dark Jedi gazed through the viewscreen at the site of the ancient Sith tombs. Only the most powerful and revered Sith were entombed there.
“One day, you will be buried here. Once you have learned enough of the Force to be laid to rest side by side with ancient Sith Lords,” said Syrus.
“Yes…hopefully not too soon,” said Panzerus as Syrus nodded.
The shuttle left the site of the Dark Lords and careened by large statues and strange stone formations. Finally, it landed at the base of the dormant volcano. It was time to depart.
"Here we are, Panzerus." Syrus smiled at the Zabrak beside him and exited the cockpit. He took a short walk from the cockpit through the passenger area and to the ramp that led outside. He stepped out and inhaled the chill air, the cold wind sweeping past him and biting iat his skin through his robes. His boots made dull thuds as he stepped away from the craft and inspected the dormant volcano.
Panzerus stepped out of the craft and suddenly appeared at his shoulder.
"Quite. You did make one mistake, however."
"You flew an Imperial Shuttle directly over the Valley."
"Who controls this planet now, young Panzerus?"
"I'm not sure. This is my first time here."
"Obviously, my good friend. Now, here is your first lesson. Before you go anywhere you would do well to learn about your destination. The Jedi are in complete control of the Valley. We Krath have difficulty doing anything there after the Revan...incident."
"Worry not. Just note that we may have to do a bit of killing before the day is done. Not necessarily a bad thing. Enter the ship and bring me the black box beneath the co-pilots seat. It contains my tools."
Panzerus ran back into the ship and left Syrus alone with the spirits for a minute or so. He pondered the fate of the lad even as he heard his footsteps behind him. Panzerus handed he box to Korodin, who nodded and smiled lightly.
"Let us go," Syrus said. Panzerus responded with a noncommital nod and together they began scaling the volcano, grim determination etched into their faces.
(Sorry for the Looong delay :\ )
At an hour after they landed they were about a fifth up the dormant volcano. They talked easily and joked about the lighter topics in the DB. When the conversation drifted to their objective Syrus became more cryptic and obscure. He was obviously skirting the issue and saving it for later. That was okay with Panzerus, he was not impatient. At that moment he simply enjoyed himself. He was taking a hike up a mountain with a good friend. Well, that was what it seemed like to him: a leisure trip. The news that the area was controlled by New Republic forces, including Jedi, seemed not to trouble him. He reveled in the moment, it had been too long. He was calm. The serenity, as he knew from teachings and experience, often was the precursor of the storm.
Panzerus and Syrus made their way up the mountain with relative ease. Obviously, life spent training to be Dark Jedi had left them fit and well-suited to physical activity. And a workout was surely in store for them as they saw 3 cloaked figures in the distance.
"Jedi?" said Panzerus as the two crouched behind one of the numerous jagged boulders.
"Yes, can't you feel the Force flowing through them. They rely on calm and serenity. For this they cannot hope to match the prowess of a fully enraged Dark Jedi."
"They haven't seen us and it looks like they're heading down the mountain. We can easily bypass them and they outnumber us."
"I'll leave the decision to you, Panzerus."
Panzerus eyed the 3 descending robed figures. The Jedi were different. They gave their young pupils lightsabers early. These young swordsmen didn't deserve the right to wield the deadly blade and they certainly didn't have to earn it the way a Dark Jedi did. Nonetheless, 3 lightsaber-wielding enemies in unfamiliar territory could prove quite a challenge. They might even have reinforcements...
The younger Zabrak looked to Syrus, then to the robed figures, then to Syrus once more.
"I've made my decision..."
Syrus chuckled dryly.
"Shall we do it quickly, or do you want to have some fun with it?"
"I'd like to have some fun, yes."
"What do you know! So do I! Follow my lead, Panzerus, and leave what will burden you behind this rock."
Syrus placed his "toolbox" on the ground behind the boulder and Panzerus dropped a few small things of his own beside it. They checked to make sure that all their weapons were ready and then, after one last nod at each other, they stepped out from behind the boulder. Syrus raised a hand and hailed the descending figures. They quickly noticed him and began approaching.
"Now, Panzerus, let me do the talking."
"I thought we were fighting."
"We are, we are."
The Jedi reached the two Dark Jedi, both of them quelling their force signatures as best they could.
"What are you doing here?" a tall, fair-haired Jedi inquired of them.
"Taking a stroll up a volcano," Syrus said with only a hint of sarcasm.
"I'd like to see your identification, Sirs," said the Jedi, obviously the leader of the group.
"Of course. Pan, kindly get your identification for the nice Jedi."
Panzerus nodded and reached behind his back, unlatching his Zhaboka. Syrus smiled and reached into his robes, quickly unsheathing his energy sword. It activated with a vibrant hum, splashing the Jedi with red light. Syrus swung as the Jedi was reaching for his lightsaber, decapitating the young lad with a single blow. The other two actiated their sabers, blue and green respectively, and moved into defensive positions. Syrus took the one wielding the blue lightsaber, a boy of perhaps eighteen with short black hair and vivid green eyes full of fear. Panzerus took the one wielding the green lightsaber, a slightly younger boy with hopeless determination in his eyes. Syrus chuckled as he approached his foe, the dark side flowing through him.
The two Jedi staggered back, completely taken aback at the decapitation of their friend. They were initially surprised at the dark energy that radiated from their two darkly-clad opponents. Syrus and Panzerus made use of this initial shock. Syrus struck at his opponent with quick, fluid strikes designed to keep him on the defensive and off balance. The Jedi was forced back and stumbled occasionally on the rocky, uneven surface. Panzerus also made good use of lightning-fast strikes. He was at a slight disadvantage, however, as a Zhaboka was a simple weapon with no protection from a lightsaber. In fact, its one advantage was the sickening sound it made when it impaled a Jedi, something that Panzerus eagerly looked forward to doing. Whenever the Zhaboka made contact with the lightsaber Panzerus would quickly pull on the blade in contact and strike with the other side. This kept the blade from getting frayed too much and insured that his opponent would remain in a defensive stance.
The pair of young Dark Jedi forced their opponents together until the two light Jedi were fighting back to back. They were defending each other but were now in a stationary formation. Panzerus called on the Force to propel him as he leaped high into the air and landed just between the two young Jedi. He thrusted his Zhaboka backwards and was met with the squishy sound of impact. The older Jedi had been cleanly impaled. Just then the younger Jedi wheeled around, ignoring Syrus for the moment, and tried a horizontal slash at Panzerus. Of course, Panzerus ducked and the young Jedi ended up decapitating his ally who was just behind Panzerus. Syrus took a step forward and deftly cut off the young Jedi's lightsaber-wielding arm. He screamed in pain, agony, and guilt. The young Jedi crumpled to the rough ground on his knees. He had seen two of his friends die, one to his own clumsy saber, and was now about to die. Panzerus and Syrus looked at each other for a moment, each seeming to say "Go ahead, I insist".
"No thanks, I got the older one, you may finish him," said Panzerus.
THe young Jedi's widened at this conversation. THey were going to kill him, and they were taking their sweet time.
"Thank you my friend, you can have the next one if we find more."
With that Syrus removed the lightsaber from the severed arm's deathgrip. He activated it, admired the blade, and swiftly ended the young Jedi's suffering. Panzerus picked up the other lightsaber.
"We may need these..."
The pair pulled up their hoods and continued up the volcano ready for anything...