Conquest 04: Rising Force . . The events in this story take place at the same time as the events in Bloodlines 09: The Two Orders
Darth Soru made his way slowly into the Emperor's quarter's.
Darth Soru: "You wanted to see me Master?"
Rovaniss: "Ah yes, Michael. I wish to discuss Darth Ircune and Darth Quetus with you."
Michael scowled as he made his way forward to stand with RoOvaniss.
Rovaniss: "You do not like them? Good. Both were weak, how they passed their trials I will never know. But together they were one of the greatest minds in the galaxy."
Darth Soru: "But Ircune is now dead."
Rovaniss: "Precisely. Which means that Quetus is no longer of any use to us."
The door opened and a tall man stepped into the room. He was clad in red robes and wore a manic smile on his scarred face.
Rovaniss: "This, is Darth Ignatious, the final triumph of Quetus and Ircune's minds. They found him trapped in stasis in the Outer Rim and were avble to bring him here and revive him. Unfortunately for them Darth Ignatious is far more skilled than either of our scientists."
Darth Soru: "A replacement?"
Rovaniss: "Exactly. But it is up to Ignatious to rid us of Quetus."
Darth Ignatious smiled wickedly.
Darth Ignatious: "It is already being done, My Lord."
Korriban, the following day.
Jedi Master and Council Member Cossy Anaron lowered his binoculars and smiled.
Cossy Anaron: "There are actually Sith out there."
His Mirialan companion raisea thin eyebrow.
Avanya Alma: "You mean this isn't another wild bantha chase?"
The Jedi Knight followed Cossy back to the speeder and stopped.
Avanya Alma: "It could be a trap you know?"
Cossy Anaron: "I'd be disappointed if it wasn't."
Down below, Darth Quetus smiled and rubbed his oily hands together. After five hours the Skakoan's team of Acolytes had finally managed to open the tomb of the long dead Sith Lord.
Nugget Xuin: "Master, why do we waste our time with this small tomb?"
Darth Quetus: "This is the tomb of Darth Skotia, my Apprentice. Skotia spent much of his life developing cybernetics to enhance his body, I need those implants. They will make me strong! Make us strong!"
Xuin regarded the Skakoan briefly before nodding his head in acceptance. Although Quetus was physically weakr than his Apprentice, Xuin still had much to learn from the old Sith scientist.
Darth Quetus adjusted his life support unit and looked at the Acolytes.
Darth Quetus: "Remain here. Kill anyone who comes near."
The Acolytes wondered slowly around the entrance to the tomb, some meditating, others sparring. One Acolytre suddenly frowned.
Acolyte: "Someone is..."
A speeder roared into view and from it leapt a Mirialan Jedi, her yellow lightsaber blazing in her hand.
Opposite her, Cossy Anaron chargd towards the Acolytes, his green lightsaber flaring into life.
The battle was short and vicious. The Acolytes fought well but they were no match for the combined skill of the two Jedi.
Avanya Alma: "You're getting a bit slow, Master."
Cossy raised an eyebrow at Avanya's mocking tone.
Cossy Anaron: "At least my form isn't sloppy. Come on, lets go."
The two grinned as they made their way down into the tomb. Avanya and Cossy had been very good friends for a long time now and on occasions their friendship had developed into something more. It was a well known fact that the two Jedi cared deeply for each other but neither of them had ever said so to the other.
Thinking on this, with the presense of the Dark Side looming all around him, Cossy suddenly stopped.
Cossy Anaron: "Avanya, I... Well I wanted... You see..."
Smiling at her friend's sudden muteness Avanya stepped forwards and kissed him on the lips. She pulled away and smiled.
Avanya Alma: "I know."
The moment was suddenly broken by the sound of voices ahead. Ducking low the two Jedi approached the source.
Darth Quetus: "It's all here! Skotia's notes, everything! I can build this, enhance my own suit, make myself stronger! I will take life, drop by drop."
Darth Quetus: "You have done well, my Apprentice. Soon you will become a great Sith Lord."
Nugget Xuin: "No one will stand before us Master!"
Cossy Anaron: "Except us that is."
Darth Quetus: "Cossy Anaron, and his little green companion."
Avanya Alma: "Who are you calling green?"
Darth Quetus: "Enough! Your deaths shall be the start of my rise to power! Defend yourselves if you can Jedi!"
Nugget charged Avanya whilst Cossy jumped towards Quetus. The tomb was suddenly filled with the hiss and crackle of lightsabers clashing against each other.
Nugget Xuin: "My whole life I have trained for this moment! I will kill you Jedi!"
Xuin grunted as he was knocked back by a powerful Force push.
Avanya Alma: "How sad, you have wasted your life training for something that will not happen."
Darth Quetus cackled as he blasted lightning towards Cossy.
Darth Quetus: "There are so many ways for me to kill you Cossy Anaron! This is your final hour!"
Cossy grittd his teeth and used the Force to hurl the lightning back towards Quetus.
Cossy Anaron: "No Quetus. The hour is yours, I have faced far more powerful enemies than you."
On the opposite side of the room, Avanya and Xuin continued to duel fiercly.
All of a sudden, Avanya unleashed another Force push, throwing Xuin back against a ruined pillar. The ground shook with Xuin's impact and the young Sith looked at Avanya wide eyed.
Nugget Xuin: "No! No I am supposed to become Sith! No!"
With a final rumble, the pillar gave way and showered Xuin with rubble. Burying the young Apprentice and ending his career.
Darth Quetus: "Xuin! No!"
The Skakoan charged Cossy, but the Jedi Master evaded his attack and swung his blade, severing one of the tubes to Quetus' life-support tank.
Quetus gasped as he was suddenly exposed to the atmosphere of Korriban. He stumbled back and slumped against Skotia's tomb. Slowly Quetus raised a hand in a plea for help. But it was too late and the Skakoan's body began to wither and die.
Cossy and Avanya walked silently from the tomb, taking the lightsabers of their fallen enemies with them. Avanya had been right, it had been a trap. But as they left the tomb after a surprisingly short amount of time, the two Jedi could not help but wonder if the trap had been set for them, or for the Sith.
Far away on Prakith, Darth Ignatious smiled as he sat down in his office. In a short time he had gone from being a nobody in the Empire to one of its leading figures.
Darth Ignatious: "Good. All is going as expected."