Open Sullust Springing Lieutenant Aran

Drow Venn

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Jedi Order
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Jedi Knight

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Fantasy Liver
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I still got it, Drow thought to himself as his shot hit the Interceptor in the engine. Although he was glad his mercenary skills could assist his Jedi brethren, he couldn't help feeling that since his piloting skills were still with him, other parts of his old life could be too. It was a sobering thought and one that he would love to explore further after this whole mess was over.

Right about now, he'd done about all he could in his Y-Wing. The Sith turrets were taken out, the hangar had been attacked, and the Interceptor was now hurtling to the ground. He supposed he could do one last bombing run on the fortress itself but that would only risk lives needlessly, including his fellow Jedi. By the Force, he hoped Talak would hurry up...

"I'm with you, boss. I think we've done our job distracting. We can't stop that thing today." Drow said, referring to the Eternal, in response to Tycho's transmission (@darkrei9n ) and angling his Y-Wing towards the sky above and jetting his engines.

"The Interceptor is down so now's the best time to fly out of here. I hit their hangar but that won't slow them forever." Drow radioed, hoping the other Jedi would heed his and Tycho's words. He wanted desperately to help his friends - he'd volunteered for this damn mission after all - but right now, the best way to help them was to advise them to get the hell out of here, especially before those dark clouds turned into something more sinister. The Ishi Tib Jedi kept a cool head as he took his own advice, cautious of incoming lightning bolts that could arise from another storm from the Eternal.

/ExitThreadAttempt
 
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Preef Callo

Faction Leader
Five Syndicates
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Crymorah Boss

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Ecclessey
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Preef was a bit surprised that his shot hit some cover as if he was some stormtrooper of old. Now, what happened next had him interested to say the least. First he spotted another human, a young female (@LeonDrandell), finding a way through the lava rivers and ash clouds and running over to the sniper. The rodian didn't think someone would be that foolish, but hey, it was a suicide run. The second thing was the human getting ready and then attempting to throw what looked like a grenade. Now, there's no way you throw a grenade this far without getting up and also no way to try and guide it with the Force without having a clear line-of-sight. That meant that both senators and the thermal detonator were visible to the rodian.

The galaxy made movies about the infamous gunslinger Preef Callo and wrote comic books about his exploits. His skill with a blaster pistol was legendary. So it wasn't just overconfidence that made the rodian pull the trigger and fire a bolt that would hit the thermal detonator just as it left the sniper's hand (@darkrei9n).

It would detonate instantly with both senators within one meter of it. There would be no chance for one of them to guide the grenade with the Force or for the other to shoot five times at the rodian. If somehow those five shots were fired, their quick succession and recoil would weaken their accuracy and Preef would dodge them by diving away.


 
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Nykoria Tallis

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Jedi Order
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Jedi Master

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Catbert
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Soooo... yeah. Master Hannibal Grayza, the slayer of Sol Puara. Wrecked by the Eternal like some Padawan running into Darth Vader. Max Tionson didn't know what hit him either. And I could do nothing to help. My stun charge swatted by the Eternal's crimson blade was the icing on the cake.
If the storm before hadn't sent shivers down my spine, then the ease of how we were dispatched surely did. But at least we got our answer: the Eternal does use a lightsaber. My dumbfoundedness by it's power didn't last... Wait, what do you mean "My tone is ruining the mood"? Awww, bugger. Alright, here's your more dramatic version.


The realization that the Eternal didn't need all those Sith, soldiers, and fortresses to remain the biggest threat to the galaxy struck Kori together with the lightning directed at Master Grayza. There was more to the sudden feeling than that; but the Dark Side clouded Sullust too much, and Nykoria's own immersion into the Force wasn't as deep to make sense of what was transpiring on the other end of the galaxy. She just knew that something terrible had happened.

All of it coalesced into one thought that rang across Kori's mind, perhaps shared by those who had been by her side throughout the years. The thought was short, simple, and powerful: "RUN!" Despite what the Eternal might think, it wasn't produced by fear... Or at least not by fear alone.

The blaster fire from the Sith that Kori thought knocked out (@DarkSaber) interrupted that train of thought. The buzz of incoming bolts made Kori adjust her footing and the angle of her blade. Even with her reflexes, she would've been caught off guard if the saber wasn't already ignited, the blade at her waist level when the Sith took the shot. But even a deflected shot was further proof that it was time to leave.

Subsequent bolts made Kori retreat, as she continued deflecting every shot, lightsaber in her left hand. The right hand was slowly filling with numb pain—the consequence of an ignored graze from one of the fortress repeaters. Her destination was Hannibal: the nearest Jedi she could hope to help. But more important things came first.

"Evac time, everyone," it took all of Kori's effort to prevent her voice from trembling while on the comms; but heavy breathing and anxiety were impossible to conceal. "Serendipity, land where you did last time, don't come close to me. If anyone approaches the evac zone, blast them." Hopefully, the decision not to commit every ship the Jedi had to the assault on the fortress would pay off now.

The landing zone was far enough from the Eternal and its entourage, further cut off from them by the new lava streams. There was no saying how far the Sith would pursue. But come what might, the Jedi—especially Nara Allam (@Charndley), who didn't seem to have engaged the Sith yet—had higher chances of reaching the Serendipity (once it would arrive) and other ships first.

Upon reaching Hannibal's side (@Mr. Teatime), the Zeltron would focus a part of her attention on him. Although she still had to keep the saber and a free hand at the ready, the Force was flowing strong with her; not squandered on fancy tricks or a life-or-death battle yet.

Nykoria had practiced telekinesis long enough; pointing a hand at the target helped, but wasn't always necessary. That was the case here: while keeping her guard up and looking out for incoming enemies, the Zeltron guided her inner light to the downed Jedi near her.

Her free right hand only reached out briefly, to grab Hans's burnt lightsaber and clip it to her belt. Nykoria wasn't sure why she did it. Maybe she could return it to the Jedi Master once they were out of there. As a memento of what had transpired on Sullust.

Meanwhile, the invisible light grew and spread under Hannibal; like an air cushion or multiple hands carefully lifting him up, with the Zeltron's azure blade between the downed Master and anything the Sith would throw at him. "Come on, don't die on us here! You're tougher than that."

If Hannibal was conscious and could walk, Kori's light would help him up and keep him on his feet. If not, his body would float towards the evac zone, with Kori stepping backwards in retreat, guard up. She'd only need a hundred meters at most to get Hans aboard a ship. Even less to get within the radius where the turret of Serendipity could provide cover. Of course, that distance was still to cross, and the Serendipity was still to arrive...

...

But what of Talak and Trys?

The facility seemed ablaze, defenses in disarray. Hannibal and Drow must have done a number on its walls, turrets, and hangar. The interceptor that had managed to take off and could threaten the evac was out of the fight. The most dangerous Sith were distracted and lured away.

It all came down to whether or not Talak would squander the time and advantage that the sweat and blood of his fellow Jedi bought him.

All these thoughts would cross Nykoria's mind as she retreated. A part of her said she was just trying to rationalize her decision. But with Max and Hans seemingly out of the picture, she had to make the call. Perhaps, if the Eternal sensed it, it too might realize that its attention could be needed elsewhere.

// Exit Attempt
 

Izel Thral

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Their success in bringing down the interceptor was very short lived, especially considering it was now coming right towards them. Izel's heart skipped a beat, and the world seemed to slow as she threw her hands up and called upon the Force once more. And it was in that moment, linking herself fully to the flow of the universe in an effort to stop the ball of metal and fire coming towards her that she had the clearest view of what was going on around them. And just how bad things were. She felt the Eternal, a black hole in the Force striking out with terrifying power. She felt her allies, her friends, their presences being snuffed one by one. Despite her situation the desire to know just what had happened forced her to turn her head. And there she saw them. Hannibal Grayza and Maxims Tionson (@Mr. Teatime and @Nefieslab ), Jedi Masters, two of the greatest of their time, lying broken and helpless on the ashy surface of this evil infested world. And there standing above them was that woman (@Dread ), another dark sider, a wicked and despicable creature that sullied the very ground she walked on with her corruption. The Vratix acted completely on instinct.

With a desperate scream, her entire body shuddering with effort, Izel pushed up on the nose of the crashing interceptor, directing it's course right towards the dark councilor. As her pike clattered to the ground she turned her hands towards the woman. She knew what she had to do. She had to buy her friends time. Time enough get away from here. With her body exhausted and mind strained near to cracking she finally began to see the forest for the trees. The enormity of the battle they were in, much larger then this simple skirmish on the surface of one tiny pebble in an immeasurable galaxy. She had been so shortsighted before, so desperate to lash out against an enemy she still didn't understand. Standing here in the midst of their power she finally began to comprehend. The very soul of the galaxy was at stake, and here they were expending valuable pieces in the game pointlessly. Unless she could do something to try and stop it.

As the interceptor screamed by overhead, aimed for it's new target, Izel struggled to maintain her hold. If she could just distract them long enough, everyone should be able to make it to the safety of the Serendipity. "The ship," She said through the strain, addressing her Padawan. "Get to the ship... Go!" She just had to hold on a little longer...
 
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Trys Aran

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Sector Ranger
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Lieutenant

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Sreeya
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She didn’t know where she was or when it was. She had been in the dark abyss of her mind, a fractured and torn mind that had been unraveled. Every thread was unwoven, pulled and tugged away from the meticulous way she had put it all together. She had known her son to be dead, for the Sith to have had him. She had been convinced that she would never see the light of day again. Trys believed it and she accepted it. She had withdrawn into her mind to escape from the physical torture, but the Sith followed her even there.

When Crix found her, he would hardly recognize her. She was a ghost, her face gaunt and her body skin and bones drowning in the prisoner uniform. The Dark Side of the Force had been used against her in nefarious ways, draining her from what she was as a person. It tore through her virtues and principles, dug into her identity, stripped away her pride and obliterated her tenacity.

Her eyes were glazed over and she sat on the floor, leaning against the corner of a wall. When Crix appeared, she didn’t meet his gaze, vacantly staring ahead with lifeless eyes. There was no turn of the head, no smile, no warmth that normally greeted the son she loved furiously above everything in the galaxy. There was no stern lecture on how he showed up in such a dangerous place. There was no fussing over how he was carrying weapons. There was none of that. She was but a hollow shell of the fierce Ranger that so many had come to know.

Trys Aran had been broken.

@Nefieslab
 

Ana DAmico

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Sith Order
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Marauder

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Painus
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Ana continued to retreat down the hall, down toward where she was being held. This was a losing battle, but perhaps there were other victories that might be gained. He probed her defenses as she took further steps back, but she did her best to bat his blade away. Again, he reminded her of his efforts to make her leave, to join him, all those years ago. She wouldn’t have it then and she wouldn’t have it now. A slight chuckle left her lips as she guided him back towards Trys’ cell, and she echoed his own words from so long ago.

”The Jedi are just too timid,” she parroted, ”They won't make difficult decisions or do what's necessary. What change can they make?” He swung laterally and lunged forward, forcing her back farther. Ana hastened her retreat, batting aside Talak’s attempted thrust. She had warned him that the Jedi would never truly accept him, that he would forever be tainted by the sins he had committed while under the hold of the Dark Side. That kernel of evil was still there, she hoped; she needed to feed it.

”Empires take time!” she hissed in retort to his final question, ”Gardeners prune specific branches. You said it yourself on Tatooine. Dead, unproductive ones to make way for new branches.” She continued to guide him down the hall, feeling that overwhelming rush of grief and relief as Crix opened the cell door. He wouldn’t like what he found, and she was sure Talak wouldn’t either. The profane whispers of the darkness suffusing this planet goaded her on, gleefully inviting her to taunt him. This place was more than a prison; it was a garden of its own, and each prisoner served as a branch.

With how close their duel was to Trys’ cell, it wouldn’t have taken long for her to keep backpedaling closer to it. Crix’s worried cries broke out into the hall, but Ana kept backing up until she was on the other side of the cell door, clear out of his way inside. Her lightsaber swung towards the open door as an invitation, and a gentle, charming smile crossed her lips.

”You haven’t tended your garden in some time,” she said, ”So we pruned the bad branches for you.”

@Phoenix @Nefieslab
 

Isen Ramm

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It became apparent that the Interceptor pilot was attempting to crash his starfighter into Izel and Isen. The two were on opposites sides of the ship, so he had to choose one or the other to try and crash into. By the way the ship was veering, he had chosen to go after the Jedi Knight and not the padawan. The young Kiffar couldn't help but figure that was a wise choice. If he were the enemy, Izel would be the one to target.

Isen watched as the ejection seat launched from the Interceptor, and the pilot (@Darasuum ) was shooting out hot, fairly parallel to the ground and creating some distance. Isen's eyes narrowed. This was the moment he was waiting for. Just as Isen broke into a sprint after the pilot, he was blindsided by a brutal Force Push (see future post) by the Lady Sith that had possibly killed Max. Isen was caught as a moving target and his directional momentum and the attack by the Sith Lord sent him airborne. The Kiffar Jedi landed with a rough and tumble thud on the rocky ground and nearly being flung into one of the streams of lava. A sharp pain shot through his ribs and core. He tried to speak to himself, but he just wheezed and coughed. The air was knocked out of him. He took just the shortest of moments to lay on his back and try to suck in breaths. "Great. Ribs again," Isen was able to force out.

Perhaps it was the will of the Force, the Living Force having it's way with the galaxy, but Isen landed in the relative proximity of Max. Before, he didn't have the view to see just how bad of shape Max was in. Looking at the broken body in front of him, Isen couldn't see how Max would walk out of this on his own. Based on Max's condition, Isen wouldn't allow his mind to feel sorry for himself. He forced himself up and stood over Max's fried body and shredded up arm and hand.

Isen, normally stoic in his nature, did not wince or frown at the sight of Max's (@Nefieslab ) condition. He was not disgusted or afraid. The anger boiled in him more. His eyes narrowed and they lifted in the direction of the Lady Sith that had blindsided him with a Force push and had nearly killed Max. And to that, Max wasn't out of the woods by any stretch. Isen's priority was to do everything he could to get Master Max to the evacuation ship. He wasn't even sure if he would answer, much less be able to move on his own. One hand moved under Max's body to lift him on the shoulders, fairly sure that he wouldn't be able to travel on his own. "Master Tionson, I don't know if you can hear me, but we have a ship to catch."

Isen's eyes and head were on a swivel looking for any blaster bolts or signs of the enemy approaching, one hand assuming the obvious and already scooping Max's body to sling over his shoulders. The other hand on his lightsaber hilt, prepared to ignite and engage if necessary. His only priorities at this point, despite his desire to go after the Lady Sith or the pilot, were to get Master Max and Master Thral on that ship.
 
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The Eternal

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Sith Order
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Dark Lord of the Sith

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The Gatekeeper
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The Eternal watched. The Jedi scattered like the rats they were, fleeing to the far side of the lava river. Their vanguard had been shattered and now it could feel the death of the Grandmaster across the galaxy. A twisted smile formed behind that mask.

Victory.

Whatever these children did here today meant nothing. They were nothing. It took a deep breath, standing with lightsaber in hand as it surveyed the carnage.

Some were wise enough to retreat but others seemed intent on fighting. Continuing to cover the retreat. They should have left well enough alone.

The Eternal's left hand clenched in a gripping motion, not unlike it was wrapped around someone's throat as the clouds began to arc with lightning once again. The stragglers would quickly find lightning striking their positions if they did not move, forcing them to release any sort of grip they were maintaining on the ship (@Isen @Reyn).

They would be wise to seek cover or flee. To continue to attack was to die.
 

Talak Rand

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Jedi Knight

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Phoenix
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Dread. It settled over Talak as he traded blows with Ana, swapping spots and continuing his assault. Something terrible had happened far away. Or was it much closer? Talak had trouble identifying the source, but it seized at his heart.

For a moment, everything was a blur. Crix was in Trys's cell, Ana was preaching his own misguided words, but something was wrong. His eyes fell on Trys as they reached her cell, and Ana stepped back just enough for Talak to drink in the horror of what was inside.

Everything about her was different. He'd spent hours looking into those eyes, lost in them, and now that window to the soul was changed. It was twisted with something he recognized all too well. Something he was well acquainted with.

He knew why Ana had done this. He knew what she wanted from him. She wanted the darkness. The "relapse" as Trys had once called it.

Utter fools. You have no idea what I'll do to you, he thought. He wasn't coming back to the Sith and if she wanted him to prune their order. Oh, he would do that. He would cut them down to their very roots and scorch everything on the path.

The Arcanist's eyes swept up and locked onto Ana behind his helmet and all they held was cold death.

You're stupider than I ever thought, he said, his voice acidic. She fancied herself a scholar. A learner. She thought she could shape an Empire, but she'd done what? Festered as a child in the years since he left. She was nothing, and the worst type at that: a nothing who thought she had vision.

And now he would rip her dream down, brick by brick.

He lunged forward, his left hand using the Force to seize her by the throat and slam her into the wall as his right saber swept from his own left to right at chest height. His attacks were no longer intended to dismember. They were no longer meant to drive her back. They no longer cared who she had once been to him. She would be on the floor in pieces. They were the attacks of the Sith Lord he had been.

The Arcanist would buy Crix his window to escape and litter the floor with bodies on the way out. This was what she wanted, now she'd find out if death was everything she'd hoped.

@Nefieslab @Painus @Sreeya
 

Tycho Berand

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Independent
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Senator, Ord Tindell

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darkrei9n
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The Rodian was a good shot, but even he couldn't account for Rosanna's use of the force. The grenade slowly arced up from behind the rock Tycho was using as cover and a shot rang out through the battlefield. Fortunately Rosanna's sudden assistance from the force provided a bit of oomph to his toss, changing the arc and speed of the grenade suddenly, accelerating it towards the Rodian. Tycho grimaced, it almost looked like the shot had still managed to graze the detonator, the complicated mechanisms in the device may have been damaged rendering it neutralized. By that point Tycho was already up and out of cover, slowly retreating while firing his five shots at the alien criminal (@Eccles ). If he tried to shoot the grenade again, he would likely take a hit, especially standing out in the open like he was. If he avoided the blaster fire, the thermal detonator would land rather close, especially with Senator Rosanna's assistance.

Nevertheless as soon as Tycho let off the fifth shot he would turn and run, giving Rosanna a push. "Go now, while he's distracted." He would look back every so often, making sure that the Rodian wouldn't try anything foolish like trying to ignore the grenade and just keep shooting at Tycho. A series of beeps from his astromech droid came over his commlink once more, asking him where he wanted to be picked up. "I don't kriffing care, set her down as close as you can safely get, this is going far worse then I thought it would."

@LeonDrandell
 

Darth Vyrassu

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Sith Order
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Sith Council

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The Gatekeeper
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When the Jedi Master (@Nefieslab) was struck and sent flying, Vyrassu laughed. To her, it was amusing to see a Jedi broken down then sent flying halfway across the battle field. That muse only lasted as long as her laugh however. She got bored easily and turned her attention to the next closest Jedi on the field. There were two, an older and younger one (@Reyn) (@Isen).

The Dark Councillor began to move towards the Eternal, but sent her hand forward towards the Jedi, using the Force to push them back violently. It'd feel as if a truck slammed into them at high speed.

The older one was focused on aiming a ship at her, then flinging it. A ship that would fight against her grip. The Darth's strike would hit long before the woman could finish the maneuver, simply because of the speed and simplicity of the attack. A padawan could not stand up against the dark councilors push, and the knight was obviously distracted.

 

Nobody

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Marauder

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@DarkSaber
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The Jedi (@Catbert) easily deflected your bolts, but the attack was still a success; she began retreating and went after the fallen Jedi. He ignores her; there's bigger problems at hand. He noticed, while shooting, the woman running across in the wide open towards a senator hidden in cover; he senses murderous intent and a flash of glinting light as the detonator comes up. He's too distracted with shooting to do anything too quickly...

A shot rings out, barely glancing off the side of the explosive, and simultaneously he loses focus on the Jedi, allowing her to go after whatever Jedi she may attempt to save. He closes his eyes for a split second before flinging his right hand in a sideways motion, still hiding in his cover. Ideally, as the shot pings off of the detonator, he would reverse its direction and throw it back at its owner. Couldn't take a gift of such worth...it would be rude.

It would fly towards the top of the rock, striking it with a sudden force; The woman's untrained guidance was not merely as strong as the experienced Marauder's; it would ideally explode while the Senator was in the middle of his follow-up shots. It was foolish not to escape when he had the chance; In the most likely event, he would be disfigured as the bomb vaporized the rock and severely harmed his wellbeing.

@darkrei9n @LeonDrandell @Eccles
 

Hannibal Grayza

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Jedi Order
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Jedi Council

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Mr. Teatime
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A tiny flicker of movement heralded Hannibal's eyes slowly opening, first one and then the other. If he could say anything at that moment with certainty, it was that there was a surplus of pain. Not just his own, either, he seemed to be picking up the pain, suffeirng, and death of numerous others, far more than he should be and in a huge jumbled mess. His mental defenses were still up but they were out of wack, unfocused, full of holes. Probably shouldn't have tried to weaponize them against the Eternal.

It was a sign he needed to leave, as if getting nailed by lightning wasn't it. Laying on the ashen ground and smoking gently from the Dark Lord's personal attention wasn't his idea of a good time. But hey, not dead. Never let it be said he doesn't follow instructions.


"Heh, nice try, jackass. Next time, give it your A-game," he commented to himself weakly, coughing slightly at the effort. Moving was literally a pain, his electrocuted muscles protesting and numerous burns not particularly happy with the effort, but the Force provided some relief from the pain at least. He was finding it difficult to concentrate properly and his presence in the Force was weak and flickering. Oh hey, there was Kori.

With great stubbornness his right hand reached out to grasp his burned and cracked lightsaber before @Nykoria Talis could grab it. No one was allowed to touch it, not even now. His arm and ribs loudly protested the motion, but even so. It was probably best Kori was helping him stand, as it would've taken him an age on his own. He grit his teeth and began to walk forward, away from the fortress and toward his fighter. It had to be his own ship, Kori's wouldn't work.


"Lee, exit. Max we need to go. C'mon," his voice crackled through his half-damaged helmet comm and he moved, saving the rest of his energy to force his body to move forward. It really wanted to lay down and not move but this was a really bad place for it.

He'd eventually get to his X-wing, half climbing, half flopping into the cockpit and painfully arranging himself in the otherwise comfortable seat as the astromech prepared for take off along with the other ships, breath hitching in his throat as he failed to actually find a position that didn't completely suck.


"Talak, we're delta. Don't die," he sent to his friend before leaning back and giving up on speech. The X-wing would begin to lift off the black soil of Sullust and ready itself for proper takeoff.

@Catbert @Nefieslab @Phoenix

//Exit Thread Attempt
 

Wiley Winnz

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Sith Order
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Marauder

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Darasuum
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Having high enough altitude and taking everything else into account, Wiley managed to come in to an unsteady stop. By the time the chair got to running speed he disengaged and hopped out of his harness in one swift move, letting it crash to the ground as he back flipped out of the remaining momentum. It was a shame nobody saw it or even get it on camera. Turning around slowly, he looked towards the ever growing emotional ripples in the Dark Side. He wasn't even trying to reach out and feel, yet there was a scent on the wind and it made the Marauder smile underneath his flight helmet.

Fists clenched at his side, grinning from ear to ear, the Marauder was breathing heavily from sheer adrenaline but it was coming to a calm. The uneven cooled lava planes weren't perfectly flat and at the distance his ejection maneuver had taken him out of line of sight of the enemy ground forces, the downed pilot had a way to travel on foot to get back to the fortress as well as probably a shallow lava river or the Jedi ships he had seen land.

Keeping his eyes on the sky, the man looked for any sign of the Y wing from before. Wiley took up a fast pace towards where he had last seen his downed interceptor or assumed it would have crashed. It was a clear observation the Jedi forces that had come were in retreat as other ships took to the sky and took escape vectors.

Wiley's corrupted eyes would eventually settle on his smoking ship, or what remained of it. He hoped the recording had survived the crash. But there was still present threats in the area. The Marauder was had yet to lower his guard or be fully satiated in his bloodlust. Provided any of the Jedi forces lingered, he was keen to reengage and show that he wasn't just a good pilot. Reaching out further he thought to seek that glimmer of hope somewhere. There was sadness, anger, fear. But there wasn't any hope inside the fortress. There were no Jedi left on Sullust.

 
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Maxims Tionson

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Jedi Order
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Jedi Council

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Nefieslab
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Everything was pain but pain meant that he was still alive at least, worse than the pain was the sense of the Force recoiling as something rippled through it. Like a stone being cast into a serene lake, the death of the Grandmaster reached him on the far shore of the Force. There, laying awkwardly in the ash of Sullust in the light of the lava flowing around him, Max felt the leader of their Order being snuffed out of life and joining the Force.

Max might have been willing to wait for Isen but someone who hadn't been content to wait was his droid friend. Still, after all this time, unnamed due to it's lack of decision to accept one. It beeped at him in binary as it rolled over the ash toward him. Max was reasonably sure that he would have shouted at his droid if he wasn't so intent on keeping his mouth firmly shut.

Still staring down at his mutilated right arm, even as he grabbed tightly onto his droid friend with the other, Max tried not to panic. Panicking would increase his breathing and already he could tell that the armour burning into his chest was giving him issues with the ribs on that side. Breathing hurt and that was never a good sign.

Perhaps worse was that his right arm wasn't hurt as much as it had done before not because it was healing or anything like that; but because the damage was worse than he thought. He could feel the Force through himself and through it, he could feel his own body in far greater detail. Except... he couldn't feel anything below his right elbow, the lightning had seared his nerves. Temporary or permanent, he couldn't know but just staring at the now thoroughly useless lump of flesh dangling in strips from his elbow filled him with so many emotions that he just couldn't find the strength to push away.

Pain.

Anguish.

Regret.

Anger.

Using his droid as a companion and crutch, Max would push himself to his feet. The Force answered his call, his plea, and strengthened his failing body. Enough that putting one leg in front of another was possible at least.

"Isen... see to your own Master."
he dismissed the Padawan with uncharacteristic bluntness, anger and pain leeching into his speech, "I will see to myself."

He didn't want to be so blunt or harsh with the younger man usually but he was now. There was just too much going on. Hearing Hannibal's com message he gritted his teeth and growled in frustration. He touched his com link as he reached the Tigris and all-but hauled himself into the pilot's seat, letting his droid friend do most of the work.

"In the Tigris."
he responded to Hannibal with a lump in his throat as he switched the signal to send to his friend only, "If I die before the ship arrives at 4... you take it... and you ram it into Vyrassu at lightspeed if you have to."

He cut the line and used his one good arm to assist his droid in the ascent and escape from Sullust, to a spot close to Corellia before onward to the other Temple.


/Exit Thread Attempt
 

Izel Thral

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Jedi Order
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Jedi Knight

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Reyn
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"Isen!" Izel shouted in a mixture of anger and fear as her apprentice (@Isen) bolted, not towards the Serendipity but after the interceptor pilot, as though that would do them any good at this point. It served to make her concentration waver but what would completely break it was the oncoming Force push from the dark councilor.

Izel gasped, releasing her hold on the interceptor and trying to raise her Force barrier. But she was weak, and even at her full strength she wouldn't have stood a chance against Vyrassu's onslaught. The push hit the Vratix like a bus, sending her hurdling through the air, crumpling against the rocky ground and rolling over and over, ironically ending up much closer to the Serendipity as it came in for a landing. In the meantime the Sith interceptor would fall short without the Jedi's influence holding it up, erupting into a brilliant explosion some distance in front of the dark councilor. (@Dread)

As lightning began to rain down from the sky again around her Izel turned over and groaned, struggling to get up. Her whole body ached, feeling the weight of a star on her back from the fatigue. Her vision blurred and her hearing rung uncomfortably. Vaguely she could see Kori's (@Catbert) ship not far away. More on instinct then anything else, she was able to shamble towards safety. In the back of her mind she wondered for the state of her apprentice, but she was far too discombobulated to recognize anything going on, let alone help. All she could do was stagger into the ship and collapse, turning over and trying to get a focus on the battlefield outside. Everything was still a mess of dark energy, sorrow, anger, hatred. And nothing was clear enough to see. She understood one thing perfectly well though. They'd failed.

//Exit Thread Attempt
 

Nykoria Tallis

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Jedi Order
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Jedi Master

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Catbert
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Hannibal was alive. He could talk. He could even walk. And all it took was a momentary thought of taking his saber along with his body. "Good to know what makes him tick." Right there and then, Nykoria needed some good news. Like Izel having that moment of clarity and doing the right thing... Or trying to, because the Dark Councillor's retaliation would be no joke. Either way, with Hannibal walking towards his ship, Kori didn't have to be as concerned about evacuating it from Sullust now.

By then, the Serendipity had landed, it's ramp down and ready to give a ride off-world to any Jedi or affiliate who needed it. There was room for seven, and four positions were already reserved: for @Nykoria Tallis, who was approaching the ramp; for @Nara Allam, who must've already boarded the ship; and for @Izel Thral, who had also arrived to Sullust aboard the Serendipity, and was all but sent to it... @Isen Ramm would probably board the ship as well, given that his Master was slated to be there.

Kori would wait for as long as it took for the evacuees to get there. Then she'd hit the wall of the ship, with a loud: "Get us out of here!" With that, the ramp would raise, and the Serendipity would blast off into the skies of Sullust. Only then would she allow her back to slide down the wall, exhaling. During the fight, when the Eternal was wiping the floor with two Jedi Masters, Nykoria had experienced something she couldn't make sense of. A bad feeling struck her moments before the pilot announced a priority transmission and put it for everyone aboard to hear.

"This is Jedi Master Oren Zapan of the Jedi Council, the Jedi Temple on Ajan Kloss has been attacked by the Sith. The temple is falling. Do not return to the temple, it is not safe—stay where you are, or jump to a random location and await my instructions."

"By the Force... What have we done?"

// Exit Thread
 

Crix Aran

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Jedi Order
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Padawan

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Nefieslab
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Crix couldn't believe what he was seeing - he didn't want to believe what he was seeing because what he was seeing horrified him to his core. Hell, it didn't horrify his core so much as it completely destroyed it. Trys Aran was his core - he had learned everything he ever knew about himself from her, he had grown up because of her and he had trusted and loved her beyond anything else he had ever felt.

Because she was his mom.

But now, staring into her eyes, Crix didn't see it there anymore, he couldn't see the love. He couldn't see if his mom loved him anymore when he looked into her eyes because he could tell that his mom... his mom wasn't really there anymore. His mom, his core and his only family member left in the Galaxy and she was slumped there, devoid of any semblance of what made her who she was.

Trys Aran had been broken and it was all his fault.

Finishing his mad, scrambling, dash toward her, Crix grabbed her by the shoulders and just stopped. He wanted to shake her, to cry at her to wake up, that he was here and that he needed her to wake up! That he was sorry he had run away, that he had caused any of this and that he just wanted her to tell him off and for things to go back to normal!

But he couldn't do that because he was pulled up short by her eyes, by the complete lack of any kind of defiance or love or energy within them. The feeling in his gut, the coiling dread that the Force had been warning him of for so long, finally released and he knew she had been broken because of him, because he hadn't resisted the Sith's mental attack. It was because of him that she was broken.

He felt the feeling in his gut twist and burn as it shifted from dread to loathing, deep and black and reflected right back at himself.

The tears had never stopped streaming down his face and Crix was beyond caring about them, or about how he looked. Instead he shifted his grip and he held her tightly to his side as he half-carried, half-dragged her onward. It wasn't too much of a physical struggle honestly. Was it because he was stronger or because she seemed so much... less now? So reduced from her torment at the hands of the Sith?

He closed his eyes to the stinging of his tears.

"M-mom we... we... we gotta go mom. We gotta get outa here we... I'm sorry mom... I... I..."


Every time he went to speak, words fled and all of a sudden he was a small child crying into Try's shirt after she'd told him off for doing something he shouldn't have as a kid. And all he could do was cry and apologize and try, desperately, to not just sob into her. Instead he stumbled forward, pulling his mother out of her cell on unsteady feet. Every step was hard but each one grew surer with intensity, with a desperate need to carry his mom free from the hell he'd doomed her to.

He didn't know if his mom could even come back but it didn't matter - he couldn't leave her here. He couldn't fail her like that again.


@Phoenix @Painus @Sreeya
 

Ana DAmico

Character
Sith Order
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Marauder

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Painus
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Ana’s goading had gotten its desired effect; Talak practically radiated hatred and anger the instant he laid eyes on the broken husk that he once knew to be his beloved. That tiny kernel of evil that he had spent so long burying sprouted once again, and now he would wreak havoc all throughout the festering corpse that was the Sith Eternal. She was too weak herself to make much of an impact at pruning her peers to make way for a greater order, but Talak had been a Sith Lord. Deep down, no matter how much he wanted to fight it, he was a monster.

”And you’re no Jedi,” she spat back at him, bringing her saber up defensively. Whatever quip she had for him was stolen out of her throat, though, and with a choked shriek, she slammed against the bulkhead. Her vision swam briefly, but she kept her eyes locked onto the monster in front of her. He moved with an unnatural fluidity and speed amplified further by his honed strength in the Force.

It was all she could do to bring her blade up in a backhanded slash to intercept and occupy his. She knew she couldn’t match his strength, but she needed to break the vice around her throat. Desperately, she thrust her free hand forward and channeled that overwhelming fear she felt into a burst of lightning aimed for his chest, aiming to distract him long enough to disrupt his hold over her. They hadn’t fought since their first meeting, and now she believed that this was going to be their last.

Behind him, the boy and the broken woman began their limp out of the fortress. She had no idea how they intended to escape, but she was in no position to stop them from trying. If she was going to die here, she hoped it was the impetus for radical change within their order.

@Phoenix @Nefieslab
 

Talak Rand

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Jedi Order
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Jedi Knight

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Phoenix
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The Arcanist heard Hannibal's words about the Jedi evacuating, but they were distant and seemed insignificant. His focus was on the target in front of him. He felt that power bend to his will again, its intoxicating touch like that of an old lover. It was as alive as ever, and it called out to him as he moved. He could feel his grip around her throat, the power, the control, the death in his hand.

She managed to block the cut that would have bisected her and he was forced to release his grip as she lifted her own hand. The brilliant blue lightsaber now lit in his left hand and arced low, catching the lightning and sending it into the floor of the hall in a small but packed explosion.

His right saber once again swung out, this time laced with a wave of telekinetic energy aimed to slam her back down the hall or into a wall. But he didn't advance. He wanted to kill her. To throttle the life out of her with his bare hands, and he knew there was no going back after this, but there was one reality that still tore at his mind.

He loved Trys.

She was the one that brought him out of his darkness to begin with and she was still here. She needed his help more than she ever had before. His teeth ground together as he stopped himself, his breathing difficult in a way that had nothing to do with physical exertion.

Go. Or I'll kill you, he said, a promise in his tone. He stepped back toward the cell. His eyes were still fire behind his mask and she would be able to practically feel them boring through her. There was no more hesitation and though his future path may have been uncertain, this moment couldn't have been more clear. @Painus @Sreeya @Nefieslab
 
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