Sex. Substances. Syn and Sorrow.
Sorrow sat quietly at the bar cradling a glass of blue liquor in one hand and holographic projector in the other. His bloodshot eyes watched the holo image of a young Twi’lek girl rotate around on the projector laughing in excitement and smiling warmly at him. Sorrow, lost in his memories, saw in his mind the day the vid was taken. It was the same day that she had given him the Liche-blade he now wore at his hip everywhere, the one he honed and polished everyday.
Ayylese was her name. Or it had been. Before she had died. Killed by her owner, killed for taking Sorrow in and caring for him. For loving him as he had loved her.
His glass was emptied in one swallow, another was put in its place almost instantly by the bartender. If Sorrow had been paying attention he would have noticed the look of worry on the bartender’s face, but he was too involved in his memories of Ayylese, memories that were quickly shattered by thick fingured human hand that reached in and grabbed the holographic projector from out of Sorrow’s hand.
Confused Sorrow looked up to find an equally thick, as well as dirty and unkempt, human holding the holopad in a most unseemly way.
“Woo boy!! Isn’t she a nice little piece! I sure would like to have a go with that little creature wouldn’t you Merve?” The Filthy man looked back over his shoulder at another person as he asked the question.
Sorrow turned away and finished the new drink in one again. A small sigh escaped his mouth tightly encased in anger. Well I guess it’s time to leave anyway. He thought as he turned back to the filthy piece of scum who had dared to lay hands on Ayylese, only to find his Liche-blade, held by his hand, sticking firmly out of the man’s chest. Strange. I don’t remember doing that. Another sigh escaped Sorrow’s mouth. Oh well the result would have been the same anyway.
Sorrow jerked the blade free of the corpse’s chest and wiped the blood off of it.
“One more for the road please.” He asked the barman. That’s when he noticed the look of fear on the barman’s face. Somewhat enhanced now that Sorrow had just swiftly and without thought killed another patron of this fine establishment. Sorrow followed the barman’s gaze, noticing that it wasn’t on him or the corpse at his feet, to find Illian standing over a table.
Illian looked exited, if not crazed, his long hair flowing down his back and over his face. He let out a tiny insane chuckle as he drove a Rodian’s head firmly into a bowl of what this bar called soup. Sorrow could see the Rodian’s face slowly begin to compact as Illian put all of his force enhanced strength into act. A barely audible cracking noise sounded as the Rodian’s head gave way to the pressure and collapsed, Illian’s hand sinking into bowl.
Sorrow watched with a mild sense of amusement as he finished off yet another drink then spoke. “Illian. I think we’ve worn out our welcome here. Let’s find something more interesting on this planet…. What’s this planet called again? Oh never mind. Um yeah thanks for the drinks barkeep.
Sorrow turned back to the bar to collect the Holopad then swiftly rounded, drawing his DL-18 blaster and letting loose a couple shot’s into the corpse. “Nobody touches my Ayylese!! NOBODY!!.... Illian! Lets go.”
Illian glanced up from his work in annoyance, shooting Sorrow a malevolent glare before returning his gaze to the bowl of gore in front of him.
“Patience Sorrow. I haven’t finished with this one yet.” Sorrow sighed, holstering his blaster and walking over to his deranged friend.
“Syn, we really need to leave now. This place is getting decidedly unfriendly.” As Sorrow spoke, several patrons stood, pulling vibroshivs and blades from their sheaths and began walking towards the two Dark Jedi. Illian rolled his eyes, looking from Sorrow to the angry customers, irritated.
“Fine. I will just leave my companion here the way he is, broken and un-consumed. Happy now?” The slender Dark Jedi rose from the table, wiping soup and pieces of the Rodian’s skull and brain on his friend’s robes. “Who are these people Sorrow? More friends?” Illian pushed back his raven hair with a gauntleted hand and smiled thinly. “Allow me to introduce myself. I am Illian Syn, Dark Jedi Guardian and you’re humble guest. This dour looking fellow is my travelling companion, Sorrow, and we are most happy to be here in this fine establishment partaking of your wonderful hospitality.” Sorrow shook his head resignedly as the group of aggressors closed in, some looking at Illian with confused expressions. One stepped forward, obviously the leader, and stared menacingly at Sorrow.
“That man you jes’ decided to put yo’ blade in happen’ t’ be a good frien’ o’ mahn. You offworlders got a whole heap a’ trouble commin’ yo’ way,” the man spoke, waving his Shiv in the air before him for emphasis. Sorrow just looked at him pityingly.
“Your friend should have minded his own business. Now he’s dead. I suggest you get back to your drinks unless you want to end up the same,” he said as he slowly drew his lich-blade.
“You gonna wish you wuz’ never borne,” The man said pulling his arm back to lunge at Sorrow. Suddenly he froze, blood leaking from his mouth. It took Sorrow and the rest of the patrons a moment to register Illian, his head resting against the man’s shoulder with his eyes closed- and his gauntlet shoved cleanly through his gut. Anotehr spurt of blood escaped the ring-leader’s lips before he began to slip to the floor, guided by Illian’s other hand.
“Shhhhhh… “ Illian whispered into the dead man’s ear as he lowered him to the floor, gently pulling his gauntlet out. He stood up and faced the rest of the crowd, black hair flowing across his blood spattered face. His eyes were burning a luminescent green, and he wore a faint smile. “That was rude of him, so I put him to sleep for a while. I hope the rest of you have manners…” he trailed off as Sorrow laid a hand on his shoulder.
“Time to go Syn. That man you just killed,” he said looking at the corpse on the floor, “I think he was the sheriff.” Illian turned slightly to look at his friend. Their eyes met and they both burst out laughing, before walking casually out of the bar amidst the still shocked patrons.
Sorrow was laying in bed next to an attractive young woman he’d picked up at the third bar he and Illian had visited last night, after smashing up the first two, when the hotel door burst open and two men ran in and stood at the bottom of his bed with blaster pistols aimed at him.
After a short period of time, the young woman stopped screaming long enough for Sorrow to ask “Can I help you?”
“Those guys ya’ lot killed las’ night in the bar. They was part o’ the Rickt famlee.” Said one of the serious lookin men perfore pausing and waiting for the seriousness of the situation to settle in for Sorrow.
After pausing for effect… or was it out of confusion. Sorrow asked. “The who Family?”
“Boy you mus’ be stupid! The Rickt’s! They own dis’ town an’ everyone in’it. An you’s just killed Sheriff Rickt and is’ brother.”
“So now you’re here to kill me? Don’t get me wrong but isn’t that against the law? I mean if these Rickt’s are the Sheriff and all?” Sorrow’s confusion had turned to mild annoyance and a slight curiosity.
“You’s fool they own this town! They’s can do whatever they want. And they’s want you’s dead fer killin one o’ their own! An they ain’t gonna stop till you is!”
The dapper fellow’s eyes squinted shut as the intent of his words…. Had absolutely no effect on Sorrow at all. However the tightening of his finger on the trigger did.
Sorrow moved into action quickly. Grabbing the young woman next to him, as she sat tightly wrapped in the sheets shivering in fear, he pulled her overtop of him.
Her renewed screams of terror were silenced quickly as the blaster bolts impacted into her body.
Sorrow sighed at the loss of such enjoyable night, but her life had served a purpose. While she was bravely protecting his life with her in such a selfless act, Sorrow had had time to reach under his pillow and pull out his own blaster pistol. With one shot the dapper gentleman who had informed him of his impending death fell to the floor, most of his face was badly burnt or on the wall behind him. The other man who Sorrow had honestly paid little attention too had foolishly dropped his blaster and pulled out a vibroshiv.
Sorrow grunted as the man jumped on top of him and the dead girl, his arm drawn back to drive the shiv into Sorrow’s head, when another blast came up from under the sheets. The blaster bolt impacted the man between the legs and he fell to the ground screaming in agony as his manhood was burned away by the weapons energy.
“I do love a girl that brings a weapon to be… even if she’s too daft to use it.” Sorrow gently lifting the body of the women, moving her aside and setting her down on the bed covering her burned and charred body with the sheets so she looked as if she were only sleeping once more. “Brave little angel. Enjoy the sleep.”
“So what’s all this noise about?!” Sorrow turned to find Illian at the door. “I don’t like people interrupting my entertainment!”
The glow in Illian’s eyes was beginning to recede but it still stood out blatantly through the thick layer of fresh blood coating his skin.
“Illian my friend. I think this town just got a whole lot more interesting.”
Illian turned and walked out the door casually. “Good. I was getting bored.”
Illian turned and walked back to his room, looking around at the mess he had made. Bits of his companion of last night lay everywhere, and blood was layered over the walls and floor. Turning his nose up in disdain, he picked his way through the gore, he took the sheet off his bag containing his clothes and equipment and left, meeting Rosh in the corridor outside.
“I’m ready. Let’s go.” Sorrow just looked at the Guardian as they walked, his face a mixture of pity and amusement.
“Illian, you do realize that you are covered in blood?” Illian looked at him blankly.
“Yes I know. Shall we go?” Sorrow shook his head and smiled slightly.
“Sure, let’s go. Can you at least wipe your face a little though? You must have done a real number last night.” His friend shrugged, wiping blood off his face with a small piece of cloth.
“She needed to breathe. She was suffocating me, so I put some new holes in her. It’s not my fault her new freedom turned into crimson liquid. I feel like breakfast.” Illian set off towards the cantina, whistling some unknown tune. Sorrow was about to follow when a strange sensation in the force caused him to stop and look up the road to the left. A group of soldiers were moving towards their position, guns trained on Illian.
“It’s too early in the morning for this [Expletive Deleted]!” Sorrow swore as he moved quickly behind his friend. “Syn, company.” The Dark Jedi both stopped in the middle of the road and watched the soldiers approach.
“Force users Sorrow and Syn, you have been charged with the murder of a man of the law and the wilful destruction of several public establishments. You are hereby bound by law and ordered to stand down!” Illian and Sorrow looked at one another and for a moment there was silence.
“This can’t be right Rosh.”
“I know, there must be some mistake!” Sorrow looked back at the soldiers, who were now looking a little uncertain. “I have to protest. The charges against us are false!” Illian nodded gravely.
“Indeed. We did not kill a law-man. We killed several, not to mention that barman…”
“And the two serving girls,” Sorrow interrupted.
“Oh yes, and the serving girls. Then there was that sales-man,”
“and the bounty hunter,”
“and we can’t forget the lovely ladies we met last night. I mean what kind of planet, Rosh my friend, can’t even keep track of a good old fashioned killing spree?” Rosh sighed and nodded sadly, before both Dark Jedi whipped out their blasters and made short work of the shocked soldiers. Holstering his gun, Illian looked wistfully at the cantina across the street. “Eggs. I want eggs.” And with that he set off across the road again.
Sorrow sat quietly at the cantina sipping on a warm cup of joe with a little extra something added to it from the flask at his hip. He was contemplating the events of the morning. Although they had left a nice trail of mayhem behind them the previous night, there was really no way anyone could have followed them back to the hotel they were had stayed in. So how was it they were found so easily?
“Illian, I think we’ve been ratted out!” The realisation came with a spark of interest as he gazed longingly back across the road at the nice little three star hotel they had chosen at random while stumbling down the road drunkenly with the ladies last night.
Illian just grunted his understanding as he delicately ate his eggs.
Sorrow put down his copy of the daily news readout and finished his breakfast.
After about half an hour of lazy relaxation in the cantina, breakfast was finished and had plenty of time to settle in their stomachs, Sorrow reached down into his backpack beside the table and pulled out two small tubes filled with a white powdered substance.
Illian’s eyes lit up in anticipation of the small tubes as well as the day ahead. Quickly snapping the tube out of the air as Sorrow tossed it to him. Sorrow and Illian looked at each other in amusement as they removed the top from the tubes placing them to their noses and inhaling deeply, then dropping the empty containers to the floor.
“Ahh, it’s going to be a nice day I think.” Sorrow stood up from the table, removing several plasma grenades from his bag. He then turned to the cantina owner. “Excuse me. Would you mind watching this for a moment? I’ll be right back. Now if there’s anything missing when I return I shall be very upset with you.”
The owner just nodded as he caught the bag that was thrown to him and placed it behind the counter.
Sorrow then turned and started back across the street towards the hotel, Illian walking gracefully by his side.
As they approached the front door of the hotel Sorrow could see the clerk at the front desk trying desperately to make a connection through to someone on his communicator, his eyes flicking to Illian and Sorrow and back to the device as his terrified hands tried to operate it.
With an air of calm and control Sorrow would not usually attribute to him, Illian walked up to the clerk and leaned casually on the counter.
“Ca… can… can I help you sir?” The hotel clerk asked shakily as he put the communicator down, his message undelivered.
“Yes actually. I don’t know if you noticed but there was a bit of a mess in our rooms this morning.” Illian paused waiting for a response. When none, other than shivers of fear, didn’t come he continued. “Sooo…… We…. That is Sorrow and my self. Have a slight complaint about your wake up service….. Ahhhh!!! DAMN!! Sorrow I can’t do this!”
Illian growled in annoyance as he reached over the desk and grabbed the clerk by the head smashing his face into the counter repeatedly.
Several other hotel patrons in the lobby started making a move for the door but Sorrow stood firmly in front of the door, barring their exit. Sorrow’s eyes locked on one particular patron. Another woman, long brown hair, long legs and a body like an hour glass. He put on his most dashing smile. “You understand don’t you Miss? We paid for a service and we expect to get what we paid for. You know. A mint on the pillow, clean towels, room service. Not Some GUN TOTING BACK WATER HICKS BLASTING THEIR WAY THROUGH OUR SEXUAL PARTNERS IN THE MORNING!!”
Sorrow steadied himself as the drugs began to run through his system. “You understand what I’m saying?”
The lusciously curved woman nodded her head at him vehemently as she struggled to control her terror.
Sorrow sighed and looked over at Syn. Syn was still holding the clerks head firmly on the counter but from the amount of blood and lack of movement from the clerk, it was obvious he wasn’t going to be a hindrance or a help to anyone ever again.
Illian met Sorrow’s eyes. Both faces carried a matching sorrowful expression.
“No. No… NO!! No you DON’T understand!! You lying [Expletive Deleted]!! You just want to get away! Well no ones going anywhere!”
Sorrow saw a smile crack through Illian’s sorrowful expression as the lifeless body of the clerk finally was released and fell to the floor.
Sorrow walked over to the object of his lust and gently ran a hand down the length of her body stopping at her behind and pulling her up against his body. “I’m sorry that our relationship couldn’t last. It just isn’t working out. You don’t seem to understand me. It’s not me… It’s you!”
Tears began to run down her face, her body shivered in terror.
“There she goes with the crying! Always with the crying! Sorrow, you deserve so much better than that!” Illian walked up and stood next to Sorrow his face was grim as he looked the woman in the eyes and nodded his head in agreement with himself. “I’m sorry but it’s true.”
“Illian’s right. What more can I say. It’s over between us.” Her deep brown eyes widened and a gasp escaped her lips as Sorrow drove his Liche-Blade deeply into her side, it’s blade puncturing her lung causing blood to bubble from her mouth.
“Well, we’ll always have Naboo.” Sorrow stated forlornly through screams of panic and fear as her body fell to the floor.
Illian pounced like a wild animal on a man who had made a brake for the door, his gauntleted fist trapped the man’s head between itself and the wall as he drew his blaster with his other hand let off blasts into the rest of the patrons. “I’m sorry man. But you know it had to be this way. It just wasn’t the right time for you two but I’m sure she’ll always remember you and you her!”
“Yeah I know.” Sorrow made one last attempt to keep a straight face but faltered as the drugs in his system took a stronger hold of him. After a short fit of giggles he drew his own blaster and turned to release energy bolts randomly around the lobby.
The sound of the blaster fire mixed with all the screams and cries of pain sounded like an orchestra playing classical music. Ever one was dancing to the jolly tune.
With what seemed like hours later, although in reality it had only been a few short minutes, the lobby was empty save the wreckage and bodies littered haphazardly across the floor. The two Dark Jedi Guardians looked over the wreckage one with sad eyes, the other with a lingering madness.
“Yes Syn, but be quick. I don’t like this place anymore; I think I need to blow it up.” Illian nodded and disappeared up the passage leading to the main dining area. He had obviously sensed some refugees from the slaughter hiding there and Illian couldn’t stand survivors. Two pulls of his flask and another powder line later, and Sorrow was vaguely aware of Syn’s return. He pointed to the counter and Illian nodded. Another two lines, this time for the mad Guardian, saw them walking slowly out of the lobby. Moments later the entire front of the hotel erupted in white hot plasma fire. Pocketing the detonator, Sorrow looked over to his friend. “What next Syn? I’m feeling decidedly strange and I think…” he trailed off as his companion finished the sentence.
“… and I think things are going to get decidedly stranger.” Both guardians erupted into another fit of giggles, the drugs now well and truly taking over both their systems. “I like things that are… red. Let us go and find something red Rosh.” Sorrow nodded and they set off, ignoring the incredulous stares of the crowd gathered around the burning building.
“You know, these little outings of ours are turning out to be most entertaining.”
“Couldn’t agree more. Too many people that are still trapped inside their bodies, but I’m doing my best.” Illian sighed. “Speaking of which…” he broke of as he rammed his gauntlet through the chest of a messenger that had been running straight into the pair. “Fly now little spirit. You don’t have to worry any more,” He smiled lovingly as the man went limp. “Ooh look Rosh. He had a letter!” Sorrow narrowed his eyes and snatched it from Illian.
“And it’s addressed to us. ‘Attention Dark Jedi. You are not welcome here anymore. This is our town and we have decided its time you left. You have until Sundown to be gone. If you choose to ignore this warning then you will be bringing the full wrath of the family Rickt.’ And its signed Vladimir Rickt. What do you make of that Syn?” Illian was staring dumbly at his friend.
“Not welcome? NOT WELCOME?” Sorrow smiled inwardly, recognising the beginnings of one of Illian’s infamous rages. Sure enough the Guardian’s eyes were burning green fire, and red energy was emanating from the mystical Massassi gauntlets on his fists. “I have NEVER been so INSULTED in my LIFE! These… these… BARBARIANS have the NERVE to tell us to leave? I can’t… how could… I’m… going… to kill… them…all…” Illian broke off, the effort of speaking becoming all too much for the frenzied Guardian. He set off like a dark shadow across the ground into the nearest building bursting through the door with his blaster drawn. From the screaming coming from inside, the building must have been amply populated. Sorrow continued to stroll casually down the road, using his blade and blaster to pick off any survivors that somehow made it past the psychotic whirlwind of destruction inside. As an afterthought he grabbed one terrified girl, barely in her teens running for her life and hoisted him under his arm. She screamed but he ignored her.
“Silence child. I just need some information. If you tell me what I want to know you live. If you keep screaming you die. Do the math.” She seemed to settle down, probably entering shock. It wasn’t too long after that when Illian emerged, covered in a fresh layer of blood and grinning hugely.
“Oh Sorrow, you should have been there. All the pretty colours and noised…” he sighed, before his eyes settled on Sorrow’s captive. “And you saved one more for me! Rosh, a man is lucky to have a friend like you.”
“Peace Illian. She is our tour guide for today. No killing.” Sorrow pointed his blaster at Illian’s head for emphasis, only lowering it when he was sure the other had gotten the message. “No need for tears though, she is going to show us where Vladimir lives. After such a polite invitation how could we not go and visit.”
“Oh indeed. It’s the only proper thing to do. We have to bring something though. We can’t walk in as guests without bringing something for our host.” Illian furrowed his brow, pieces of gore dripping down his face.
“You are most correct Illian, and I believe I have the perfect gift.” Sorrow opened his pack to reveal another set of plasma grenades. Both guardians shared a smile before Sorrow laid a hand on their guide’s shoulder. “Now my sweet. Show us the way.”
“… They… live… on the other side… of town. On… the… Outskirts.” The child whimpered the words out and pointed back across town.
Sorrow smiled at the young girl encouragingly as best he could but with his lack of experience with smile he failed rather miserably. “Ah don’t worry darling! I’ll keep my word. Illain. I can’t be assed walking. I think we need some transport. Would you hold this young girls hand for a moment.
Illian’s blood stained gauntlet encased the girl’s small hand and he graced her with a winning, albeit insane, smile as Sorrow walked out into the middle of the street. One of the few people still alive had crawled into his speeder and was powering the engine up. The speeder burst with energy as it reversed and took aim on the Guardian as he stood solemnly in the middle of the street. A burst of speed sent the speeder hurtling towards Sorrow with the intent to run him down.
The force mark around Sorrow’s left eye ignited in a startling blue as Sorrow raised his hand towards the oncoming speeder. A matter of several feet away from the Guardian, the speeder came to a sudden dead stop. The drivers head impacting with the windscreen with force of stop.
The two Guardian’s walked to the speeder, it’s engines still humming, with the girl in tow. The driver inside was dead, his neck broken with the impact.
“Should have worn his seatbelt.” Stated Illian gravely. Then he spoke to the girl. “If you want to survive in this world you need to, and I can’t stress this enough, you need to wear your seatbelt.”
Sorrow reached into the topless speeder and easily lifter the deceased driver out, casting him to the ground then moved to get in.
“Um Sorrow?” Sorrow glanced at his companion. “I think I should drive. You’ve had too much. No sense in pointless deaths you know. Especially when it comes to driving under the influence.”
“I don’t know Illian. I understand what you’re saying but I think me driving messed up is slightly safer then you…. driving… ever. Remember that time in Moss Eisly?” The look Sorrow gave Illian more than passed on his feelings of that day when Illian had driven their speeder straight through a bar and several other speeders in the space port in Moss Eisly.
Illian gave Sorrow a hurt look but had his mind set to not let his partner drive in his current condition. “Ok. I’ll just sit in the back and keep our tour guide company.”
Sorrow sighed at the sight of the victorious smile on Illian’s face and jumped into the back seat to sit next to the young girl, Illian jumping in the front and taking the conrols.
Pulling another two powdered tubes from his jacket and passing one to Illian, Sorrow could see Illian’s logic. ‘Don’t need any pointless deaths.’
As Illian tossed the empty tube out the side of the speeder and Sorrow sent a frag grenade into the cantina where they had eaten earlier, the speeder jerked into motion and left a trail of dust as it sped off.
Sorrow looked around casually and sighed in pity. Then pointed over his shoulder off in the other direction. “Illian… The Rickt mansion is that way.”
The speeder whipped around suddenly, almost toppling over and corrected its course, heading of in the proper direction.
Sorrow looked over at the girl next to him. “So what’s your name? I can’t go around calling you girl the whole time can I? Well first of all… I’m Sorrow, and our fine driver for today is Illian. We’re Dark Jedi.” The last was said in with Sorrow’s eyebrows raised in an almost childish manner.
“Lilliandra.” The girl stuttered.
“That’s a nice name Lill.” Sorrow relaxed in his chair and removed his flask from his belt, taking several long draws from it. He then turned and offered it to Lill. Strangely she forwent the opportunity of a drink so the flask was passed forward to Illian.
“Now I want you to understand here. My friend and I are merely humble tourists in your fine town and this whole situation is just one big misunderstanding. We’re going to see this Rickt family in order to set things right. You know? We have a somewhat stressful job and sometimes a vacation is required to relieve our anxiety.”
“Damn straights.” Illian cut in from the front seat.
“So… here we are. Relaxing.”
An uncomfortable silence settled on the occupants of the speeder. It began to become apparent to the two ‘spiced’ Jedi that the girl didn’t understand at all. That, in fact, she may well blame them for all the events leader up to them sitting here, outside the Rickt Estate waiting for the latest batch of narcotics to peak before they continued with their quest for righteous retribution in the face of grave injustice.
“Syn, you’re bleeding from your ears. I don’t think that’s healthy…” Sorrow said pensively as a small red trickly made its way down Illian’s cheek.
“S’okay. It’s just my brain overflowing. Can we kill her now?” There was a note of annoyance in the Guardian’s voice as he spoke, and Sorrow was quick to placate him.
“Now now, she’s been so helpful. Imagine if she hadn’t told you about the bomb shelter where all those people were hiding from you. Imagine all those poor people that may still be trapped in their bodies!” Sorrow had no wish to see Illian enraged, not until they were ready to move, and since he was having trouble standing at this point, he was sure any effort to do so at this point would ruin his buzz. Lill sat next to him, staring off into space, her poor mind still unable to process the carnage she had witnessed.
“I suppose I do have her to thank for that. Here you go my sweet, a token of my appreciation,” Illian said sweetly as he turned round to face their tour guide, a bloody heart held in one gauntlet. Lill blinked, reaching out and taking the heart without a sound. Satisfied that he had atoned for his rudeness, Illian sat back in his seat, allowing the mind-bending effects of the drugs to take a full hold on his already fragile psyche. “Rosh?”
“I think I need to kill someone. Soon.”
“I know Illian.”
“I think it needs to be the people in this estate.”
“I think so Illian.”
“Okay. I’ll meet you inside,” the Guardian said before turning to Lilliandra, green eyes sparkling. “Farewell my dear, Rosh will bring you along shortly, but for now we must part.” He kissed a limp hand and leaped out of the speeder.
Walking up to the main gate, a security detachment was awaiting him. The chief stepped forward and addressed the blood-soaked Guardian.
“Dark Jedi, Vladimir Rickt has been expecting you. Come quietly and he guarantees a quick and painless death. Resist and…” the man was cut off as Illian’s gauntlet found its way to his throat, his speed far surpassing the hired guns’ meagre abilities. Closing his hand, his face was sprayed with a fresh coat of blood as the corpse he was holding dropped to the floor, most of its throat still in his grip. Licking his lips and savouring the sweet metallic taste, he turned his attention to the rest of the detail.
“I’m terribly sorry, I interrupted him. I assume he was going to say something about a long, slow, painful death,” another guardsman fell to the floor, Illian’s outstretched fingers embedded in his eye sockets. The next guard in the line raised his repeater and fired, but the Guardian was already gone again, seeming to disappear and appear again amidst the group, each time taking another limb or organ, till there was only one member of the detachment left, shaking as urine puddled at his feet.
“P-p-please, I-I just w-wan’t to live… please!” he sobbed sliding to the floor. Illian only stared at the man in disgust.
“You don’t understand what an honour this is, you pathetic meat prison. I’m offering you freedom, and you talk to me about LIVING?!? FINE!” the Dark Jedi’s eyes were now a blaze of green fire, his raven hair swirling about his shoulders. “KEEP your pathetic PRISON! YOU WANT TO STAY TRAPPED FOREVER? THEN GO!” He screamed at the man, who for a moment couldn’t quite understand what was happening. Then a bolt of realisation hit him and he was running down the road as fast as he could. Illian watched him go mournfully. “I am such a bad person. How could I be so cruel?” he asked, looking up at the sky. “You’re right of course, whether he understood or not, it’s my duty to save him.” Pulling out his blaster he took aim and fired, watching the retreating figure collapse to the ground. Satisfied that his work here was done, he turned back to the gates. Vladimir waited beyond, and that was Sorrow’s department. In the meantime, it was time to go and find some more stray sheep that he could bring back to the path of righteousness.
Sorrow sat comfortably in the back seat of the speeder his arm draped protectively over Lill, as if that alone could protect her from all the evil things in this world. Slowly he began to whistle a little tune he had heard earlier in the week, he couldn’t remember where but he liked the tune regardless.
The young Lill sitting next to him started rocking back and forth in her chair. Clean tear trails ran through all the dust and blood on her face, but the tears had stopped now.
Sorrow was pleased. Tears made him uncomfortable, and a pretty girl like this should never have to cry. He had to think of a way to cheer her up.
“That’s a pretty present Illian gave you! Isn’t it?” Numbly the girl merely nodded. “I know what will cheer you up! Why don’t you come inside with me and Illian and meet Mr. Rickt! That’d be fun wouldn’t it?”
In a burst of energy born from his clever idea, Sorrow jumped from the speeder, lifting Lill up and carrying her towards the Estate as if he were taking his child to the fair. After walking through the main gate, through the bodies left by Illian, Sorrow found a young boy about the same age as Lill hiding behind some garbage bins.
“Oh, look. A play friend!” Sorrow smiled warmly as he set Lill onto the ground and drew out his blaster pistol. “You should play with him. I know he’s a little funny looking but you should never judge a book by its cover! I mean look at Illian. Who would have guessed he'd turn out to be such a nice guy!?”
Sorrow took the safety off the blaster and stood behind Lill placing the weapon in her hands. “Now hold it like this and aim down the barrel lining up these two parts. And remember squeeze the trigger don’t jerk it!”
Sorrow looked up from his tuitions to see the boy still cowering in the garbage unable to move from terror.
“Go on Lill.” Sorrow looked happily down at the young girl and frowned. “Come on now you have to learn to play sometime!!”
Lill stood there the blaster aimed at the boy. Her body was shaking.
Now Sorrow understood! She was nervous!
“I know it can be difficult to make new friends but you have to try.” He said encouragingly. When she didn’t move he began to get angry. “Now if you don’t make friends with that boy this instant I will have to let Illian PUNISH YOU!!”
The blaster fired almost instantly, several times, the boy was hit square in the chest and the following bolts set the trash alight.
“There now. See that wasn’t so hard was it?” Sorrow took the blaster away from the numbly terrified Lill, grabbed her hand and led her further into the estate with a look of triumph on his face.
Meanwhile Illian was having a hard time finding more of the Rickt guards to play with. It seemed that although the pay checks Vladimir gave were generous, they weren’t generous enough to inspire loyalty when faced with a pair of psychotic Dark Jedi. The word had spread through the ranks of Illian and Sorrow’s rampage and most of the security detail had abandoned the estate or gone into hiding.
“This isn’t good enough,” Illian grumbled as he passed another abandoned security point, one of several that lead up to the main mansion. A flicker in the force to his right had Illian almost casually pulling out his blaster, aiming at a bush a few feet away and firing three bolts of red energy. There was a groan, and a guard slumped out of his hastily chosen refuge, his chest a mess of cauterized flesh. Illian kept walking, not caring if the man was still alive or not, too caught up in his black mood.
He reached for his communicator, transmitting straight to Sorrow.
“I don’t like this game anymore. This place is losing interest. If something nice doesn’t happen soon I’m going to have to blow it up,” he said solemnly to his friend. Sorrow gave a lopsided grin, his pupils like dinner plates.
“I know what you’re saying, but have a little patience my friend. I’m teaching our young girl…” He stopped as Lilliandra’s voice cut in over the top.
“I’M NOT A GIRL! I’M A TOUR GUIDE!” Rosh smiled at Illian.
“Seems she’s finally found her voice as well. Look,” He said, moving so that the scene behind him came into view. Lill was standing Bryar pistol in hand, above a guard. The man was obviously petrified, quivering as the barrel was aimed slowly at his head. “I showed her a few moves… seems we have a natural Syn.” Illian smiled as the pistol flashed and the man’s head disintegrated in a shower of cauterized gore.
“Thankyou my friend, that was just what I needed to see. I’m going to have a wander round the main house, maybe stop in on our friend Vladimir.” Sorrow’s face reappeared frowning.
“Illian, you will not go anywhere near Vladimir till I get there understand? You know how terrible you are with interrogation. If you kill him we can’t have any fun now can we? Besides I have something special in mind for Mr Rickt.” As suddenly as it had gone, Illian’s black mood returned in force.
“Fine,” was all he said, closing off the communicator. Looking around quickly just to be sure no one else remained, he set off towards the house. Sorrow could have the stupid crime lord. In the meantime Illian had a special treat of his own for the remaining members of the Rickt family. Loosening one of his gauntlets, he drew it off slowly, feeling the chaotic ecstasy of dark energy fill him. It crackled around him in small red arcs as he walked, his hair beginning to rise in a dark halo, his eyes engulfed in green fire. It was time to stop playing, time for the real fun to start. Grinning widely, he approached the manor, dropping the removed gauntlet for Sorrow to find when he made it to the house. His old friend would understand, and Sorrow liked pretty lights just as much as Illian did.
Sorrow had had to take the Briar pistol off Lill after each time he let her play with others, she kept pointing at him. She didn’t realise that that was not a game you played with friends. However she was getting good at playing the game. She needed very little coaxing to play and Sorrow no longer had to aim the weapon for her.
As Sorrow and Lill approached the main estate screams and weapons fire could be heard from off to the side of the building and when Sorrow reached the main entrance he understood why. Reaching down he picked up the black metal gauntlet and let out a small chuckle as he imagined the fun Illian must be having right at this moment.
Without one of his gauntlets on Illian would be an uncontrollable force. His dark energies would be flowing around in unforeseen ways, wreaking havoc the likes of which these townspeople couldn’t even begin to realise. Even with the gauntlet so far away from Illian, Sorrow could feel the darkness that was part of Illian’s madness emanating from it.
“Here darling. Why don’t you hold onto this for Illian.” Sorrow said as he passed the gauntlet to Lill. “Don’t loose it though. Illian would be ever so upset if you did.”
The gauntlet, that Lill had been holding away from her in one hand like a dangerous animal, she know hugged close to her chest in fear of Illian’s reprise should she loose it.
Good to know she’s learning some responsibility. Thought Sorrow with another chuckle, this one directed inwards.
As they walked inwards through the main foyer of the enormously sized mansion, Sorrow was disappointed to find no resistance. He understood that Illian would probably have cleared most of them out, but this was not the work of his friend. If Illian had cleared the way, there would be blood and bodies. Instead there was nothing, no sign of struggle or combat.
How sad. Looks like they ran away. Now who will Lill play with?
At the top of the stairs and down a long hall that ended in a door that seemed like it should lead somewhere, Sorrow pulled Lill to a halt. “Now be a good girl and wait here for a minute. It seems not everyone has run away.”
Sorrow reached to his belt and removed his flask, taking a long swig of the drugged liquor inside then reached forward with the force opening the door in an almost casual flick of his hand. Stepping boldly inside he was somewhat surprised to find the people he had sensed staring back at him without fear. This will never do.
Turning quickly back around to another sensed presence behind him he felt a warming sensation strike his left shoulder and spin him back the way he had turned forcing him to floor with a solid impact.
He looked up along the edge of the floor to see his holo pad containing the image of Ayylese, having fallen free of his jacket, skitter across the floor into the room.
How dare they!! He thought as the pain from the blaster wound burned in his shoulder. How dare they use a dirty trick like that! Attacking from behind! So… so… Pathetic!
Before him the holo pad lit up with the image of his beloved, then the flickered. “You broke it!! You broke Ayylese!! YOU’RE GONNA PAY FOR THAT!!”
As Sorrow finished his threat he felt an oddity. He looked around to find himself standing in the middle of the room, Liche-blade in hand and covered in blood. He also noticed that a great deal of blood covered the once white walls as well. All around him bodies lay, some sliced and cut others torn apart and broken, limbs and necks turned around in peculiar angles.
“Oops. Did I go berserk again?” He contemplated the scene for a moment then moved to pick up his holo pad. Examining it closely he found that it wasn’t damaged at all, the power cell was merely running low. Oops.
Using his foot he rolled one of the corpses over so he could get a clear look at the emblem on its sleeve. Mercenaries.
With a shrug he returned, gathered up Lill and then approached the door at the other end of the room, which he now realised was an entrance hall to perhaps an important location. He could sense several more people on the other side of the door and he could feel their fear.
“I wonder if we should wait for Illian for this little bit?” He asked Lill in a manner that suggested he actually expected her to answer. She just looked up at him blankly, gripping Illian’s gauntlet to her chest.
“I guess we’ll probably have to calm him down before we discuss business with the people inside.”
The world was a writhing mass of darkness and red lightening for the frenzied Jedi Hunter as he made his way through the mansion. At first he had used his feet, but it wasn’t long before his control had slipped too far for even that. He currently floated above the floor, hair splayed out around his head, red light arcing from his entire being. Several more guards were in front of him, weapons long since dropped as they scrambled to get away from their tormentor. Within a few feet he had caught them, his one remaining gauntlet lashing out so fast as to be almost invisible, returning each time with another limb or organ. Once his victims were no longer recognizable as being once human he set off again, following his senses to where one final pocket of resistance remained. Rising up some stairs, he sensed two different presences in front of him, somehow familiar. He smiled, lightening flowing across his teeth as he prepared to kill again.
“Syn peace! We have business to discuss with our old friend Vladimir and we can’t have you entering like that. Most unprofessional.” The voice, Sorrow’s voice, punched through Illian’s psyche but failed to reach a level of understanding within the dark-force archon, so engorged was he on energy. From the hellish face a voice that was Illian’s, but also far more, boomed through the corridor.
“Sssssorrow… I… hear you… but I will… not obey… now it issss… MY turn… to have ssssome… fun…” Sorrow sighed, half of him already expecting such a response.
“Very well Syn, we will have to do this the hard way.” As he finished speaking he darted forward, Illian’s other gauntlet in his hand, open and ready to be used. The energy-wreathed avatar before him hissed and tried to pull away, but it was too late. The gauntlet snapped shut on Illian’s hand, almost immediately dissipating the vortex around him.
The two journeymen got up, both panting from their exertions, and faced each other.
“That was fun. When can we do it again,” the mad Hunter laughed as Sorrow shook his head.
“You are insane Illian, you know that? Come on, we have business to finish.” With that he pulled out his blaster and prepared to enter the room. Illian watched him, his fractured mind briefly illuminating the situation; a drugged up Guardian, an insane Hunter, and a reluctant tour guide all brought together here, at this place, to meet Vladimir Rickt. What a wonderful story this would make one day, he thought as he pulled forth his own blaster and handed it absently to Lill. The two Jedi shared one last look before both bringing their booted feet solidly into the door, the world around them erupting into a cacophony of laser-fire, smoke, and blood. Through it all, Illian laughed and laughed and laughed till his insane cackling competed with the sound of the battle around him, adding a flavor of true chaos to the entire scene.
When the smoke cleared only five remained in the office room. Illian, Sorrow and Lill stood firmly by the door taking a gander around at their handy work. Lill finally seemed to be enjoying her self as her face now bore a twisted smile, an insanity of her own kind.
Crumpled and hidden under the desk the harsh breaths and terrified gasps of Vladimir Rickt could be heard and in the corner a mature women whom Sorrow believed to be Vladimir’s wife crouched huddled behind a singed, large potted plant.
Sorrow walked calmly over to the desk and half sat on it casually ruffling through the papers that were strewn across it as Illian took Lill by the hand and led her over to one of the dead security guards. Squatting beside the corpse he pulled her down next to him and started showing her the insides of the deceased while speaking with her in hushed voices.
“Vladimir? Oh Vladimir? You can come out now. If we wanted you dead you would be dead already so be a good boy and come out from under the desk.” Sorrow’s voice was calm and relaxing, gently coaxing the older man out from beneath the solid wood desk. “There you go.”
Vladimir, for his part looked the Guardian over then moved to straighten his clothes and hair then sat down in his chair. All the fear and terror seemed to disappear from his face and was replaced by a both confident look of a man who had accepted his fate but had been gifted a minute chance to change it. Now for a man who’s armies had been laid to waste and stood to loose his business, his wife and his own life, he managed to pull himself together and enter into business mode.
“What is it I can do for you Master Jedi?” He was ready to deal.
“Oh. It’s Master Dark Jedi. We should never be confused with the other kind my friend.” Sorrow let out a long sigh and looked sadly around the room before bringing his eyes back to Vladimir. “All this could have been avoided. It need not have happened. You know that don’t you? You just had to go and make a big deal out of nothing. Your cousin was it? Died it a bar fight of his own choosing. It wasn’t a matter that needed to be turned into this whole situation. Awkward to say the least. But now it opens up an opportunity you see. A business opportunity and a chance for you to get out of this with your life and that of… your wife’s?”
Vladimir looked over to the women behind the potted plant and nodded solemnly then looked back to the Sorrow. “What is it you propose?”
“A partnership of sorts. I’ve seen that you run this town and I would hate for that to change. I also surmise that you have a higher up that you answer to. So to hide this whole situation I suggest that… You give me… and Illian twenty percent off the top of your whole business and we go away. You never have to tell your bosses and we can all put this whole situation behind us and move on with our lives.” Sorrow had been playing with a letter opener on the desk while talking. It was an antique from centuries ago made useless with the new forms of communication available. He now set the letter opener down and offered his hand to Vladimir. “What do you say? Everyone wins and your bosses never have to know.”
Vladimir thought about the situation for several seconds. Long enough to understand he had no choice in the matter at all then reached out and took Sorrow’s hand. “Great! I’ll leave my details and expect to have copies of the books sent to me every quarter. Now all you have to do is make sure your bosses never find out about our agreement.”
Sorrow got up off the table and walked towards the door confident in his new found income. Behind him he sensed Vladimir open a drawer in his desk and pull out a blaster aiming it at the Guardian’s back.
“Just one problem Guardian. My bosses already know about you two and they won’t be satisfied till you’re dead.” The sound of blaster fire echoed around the small room followed closely by the smell of burning flesh that only added to other dead smells in the room.
“You didn’t seriously think that would work did you Rosh?” Illian stood up and returned his blaster to his holster then took Lill’s hand and walked to stand next to Sorrow at the door. Sorrow merely shook his head in disappointment.
“It was worth a try. Oh well. Looks like our holiday is going to be extended. I mean If the higher ups already know about us… I guess we’ll have to deal with them too. This could become interesting.” Illian, Sorrow and Lill began to walk out the door when and a muffled sob came from behind them. They turned to find the forgotten Mrs. Rickt still hidden behind the potted plant. “Illian. Why don’t you wait for me down in the speeder. It’s been a long day I’m a little stressed and need to relax myself.
Illian smiled over at his friend Sorrow in a knowing way and led Lill out of the room closing the door as he left. Sorrow turned casually to Mrs. Rickt with his best winning smile and stepped towards her removing his jacket and placing it on the chair that housed her dead husband. “Good evening Mrs. Rickt. My name is Sorrow. Why don’t you come out from behind there? I promise I’ll be gentle….”