If there was one thing to take away from it all, it was that Harry should never have underestimated his former master.
"What do you mean by all, exactly?" Harry said blandly very skillfully hiding his shock. He seemed to be the only one on the call that was able to. The rest of the gathered Generals, advisors, and Jedi on the call didn't seem to be able to manage nearly as well. Even Satele looked impressed though she was clearly trying to hide it.
"I would also like to express my disbelief." The Chancellor said changing from surprised to skeptical.
"Unsurprising. From what I know about the way things work in the Republic, what I have just said is impossible. Luckily, things work a little different in our side of things." Darth Marr said as he looked at the other members of the holo conference that was currently happening.
His former master cut an opposing figure with his arms crossed and an almost palpable feeling of danger coming off of him, even though the image that he was reduced to. His armor also looked slightly different as well. His armor looked similar but had a slightly sleeker look to and looked like it might have been slightly tighter on his frame. This only further showed his natural build which did nothing to put anyone's mind at ease. He also seemed to be wearing a hooded cape with the cowl currently over his head. Harry wondered if it was only for intimidation because it did nothing to shade his face for obvious reasons and it definitely did not hide his identity.
"Are you trying to say that as Supreme Commander of the Sith armies you can simply have the entire force… stand down?" Satele asked with some confusion. Harry had already thought a bit and had an idea of what Darth Marr had truly done. If he was correct, then it was certainly impressive.
"Being Supreme Commander is only part of it. In the Sith Empire, everything is about power and influence. I am at the head of the Dark Council because I have both. I was originally appointed as Supreme Commander not only for my skill, but because I had pull with many key members of the Sith Forces. Many Admirals and Captain have their appointments because of circumstances that I engineered and they know that. Of course, I don't control all of them, but I do control a majority which is enough to convince any of the dissenters to fall in line." Darth Marr said as if what he just described bored him. Which it probably did. Marr didn't care for talking about his power, he'd rather prove it with action.
"That… sounds too easy." One of the Generals pointed out. Marr simply scoffed.
"Don't think taking Dromund Kaas will be easy because of this. It is the central power of our Empire and has the highest Sith Presence by far. It will be an uphill battle the entire time. This simply bypasses the step of your continued plowing through our remaining naval forces." Darth Marr said back pragmatically. Harry nodded at this.
Marr was already thinking long term. By now he realized the power the Republic could bring to bear on the Empire and he would rather not directly confront it. He was going to save as many Sith lives as possible, realizing that after this campaign was over the Republic would be weakened. He probably understood that the assault on the Emperor, it was the Republic forces that would most likely be leading the charge, which also meant they would lose the most. Then he probably accounted for the fact that Harry was going to leave the conflict which would mean a huge advantage back to him. Harry looked at his former master and he seemed to be looking right back at him. Harry gave a hidden smirk. The man probably knew what Harry was thinking right now and was waiting to see if he would say anything.
In truth, though, his former master was probably spot on. After this was over, Harry didn't plan to stick around with the Republic. Even further, dealing with the Jedi Order this closely, constantly grated on his nerves. The real issue was whether he would be able to convince Satele to join him or not.
"That seems… inefficient" One of the Jedi Masters said.
"I don't think anyone from the Republic should criticize others about inefficiency." Darth Marr shot back. This caused some to frown in disapproval, but a few of the politicians, but several of the military members snorted in amusement at the comment showing at some level they agreed.
"Commander Peverell, what do you think about this?" The Chancellor asked him.
"I think it doesn't truly matter. When we attack Dromund Kaas, we will be taking a majority of the total Republic fleet with us. Even with all the gathered naval might of the Sith, we could easily deal with it if they decided to betray us. At most they would simply slow us down. Knowing that, it would be of Commander Marrs best interest to aid us, if for no other reason than because it will limit Sith casualties." Harry said.
"The goal may not be to help the Sith Empire to survive, but simply to evacuate the top members to allow it to go back into hiding and rebuild now that they are on the cusp of defeat." One of the Jedi pointed out.
"Hmm. A valid point. I suppose then it is your choice whether or not to trust Darth Marr's words. I am sure at this point you already know where I and Commander Satele lean on the matter. If that cannot convince you then you must come to the decision on your own." Harry said in a bland tone. He didn't want to push too hard on this otherwise it would look like he was taking the Sith's side over the Republics which may not have him viewed in a good light. That could be detrimental to what they were about to do.
"Perhaps we can reconvene after a day or two to think about this. If what Darth Marr says is true, then we should have some time before we decide to attack given that the Sith fleet is no longer active. Darth Marr, for cautions sake, would you agree to have outward communications from your fleet restricted while we decide on this?"
"I can agree with that, but I ask you do not take too long with this. By now the Dark Council has realized they have lost contact with the Sith's Naval power and will begin to make preparations for what that means. The longer you take the longer it will most likely take to capture the planet which also means more losses." Darth Marr pointed out.
"We shall keep that in mind. Given that I suggest we reconvene in three days' time to figure out where to go from here." The Chancellor said. Harry rolled his eyes as the majority of the council agreed.
"Well then gentleman. Until we meet again."
With that the call ended and Satele simply looked at him with an expression that said she was clearly just as exasperated with these politics as Harry himself was.
"And you wonder about my distaste for the Republic." Harry said just loud enough for her to hear.
"Oh, enough whining. This is how democracies work. People are held accountable for decisions they make so they need to be more careful and weigh what they decide, especially when it comes to listening to the words of someone who was recently an enemy." Satele said, arguing devil's advocate.
"Perhaps, it is a shame the price of efficiency in politics is corruption."
"There is no perfect system. How could there be when it is run by imperfect people?" Satele responded as they both walked to the elevator to head back to their private quarters. They stepped in together and relaxed slightly now that they were out of sight.
"Why I don't care for any system. Anyway, you have any plans for the rest of the day?"
"No. Why did you have something in mind?" She asked coyly. He smirked, though she could not see it.
"Mmm… I had a few ideas." He said as he leaned in close to her just as the lift opened to the private residence of both of them. Immediately Satele jumped at him and he caught her with ease. She wrapped her legs around him and smiled.
"Why don't you show me those ideas then?" She asked cheekily. Harry took off his helmet and looked at her with his own eyes.
"As the lady wishes."
A day later
"I think your communicator is going off."
"I'll get it later. I'm sleeping…."
"Harry there is a limited amount of people who can reach your private communicator. It's probably important." Satele said back. Harry fully pulled himself from the world of dreams and blinked several times to get the sleep out of his eyes. He looked at the communicator and saw it blinking with every noise it made in an almost angry fashion. He grunted before picking it up and leaving the room.
"Hello?" He answered.
"I hope I am not pulling you away from anything important?" His former master said to him rhetorically.
"You're not about to convince me that you yourself don't also require sleep." Harry said back in a monotonous tone.
"Perhaps, but I'd never allow it to show in my voice."
"Given that we spoke just yesterday, I assumed this was important." Harry shot back.
"Possibly. I shall get to the point. Six hours ago, an informant of mine on a secret mission was scouring certain areas of the outer rim when he was attacked by pirates and had to make some risky escape maneuvers to get away."
"One maneuver was a sub light jump that accidently took him into the Maelstrom Nebula. Have you heard of it?"
"Vaguely. It's on the edge of the Unknown region is it not. Considered to be pretty much impossible to navigate due to its size correct?"
"Correct. I suppose I shouldn't be surprised; you have such obscure knowledge."
"I assume with you bringing this up, your informant found something?"
"Indeed, he did. Are you close to a holo terminal?" Marr asked. Harry rose an eyebrow before looking at the console that sat at the center of the residential area, he was currently sitting in. He got up and approached it.
"I am now. You're sending something I assume?"
"I am. Look at this and tell me what you think." Marr commanded. Harry rolled his eyes before plugging his communicator in and waiting. After a moment and the 3D model of… something appeared. It was clear it was a pocket within the Nebula that seemed to house a star, though it was a little hard to tell what its size was. Harry also didn't notice any planets around it though that wasn't exactly surprising.
The only thing he noticed was an object that seemed to be orbiting the star. Though it was clear that the object wasn't a planet. Its shape was too… artificial. Though it seemed to be blurry.
"I assume this scale was made based off a partial scan and not a full one and this is not some giant object rotating around the star, but rather something between the star that appeared bigger because of its closeness."
"I would assume."
"So, what is it?"
"Something I was hoping you could help me figure out." Marr said. Harry sighed before paying more attention.
"Well, based on the shape, I am assuming it is some sort of space station around the star… Going further on its shape, it almost looks like its and old Republic station but..."
"The design has been modified to have those pillars on it. All high-quality material. I imagine it's to give the base, high-level jamming capabilities as well as the extended range ability for communication under the radar." Harry zoomed further in on the object and looked at on several color spectrums for better observations. Unfortunately, the image was fuzzy due to only being partially seen.
"Do you see the way there are subtle color changes on its walls? It's uneven, like what you would see on cruisers that have been in battle a lot and have had their paints scrapped off. Except it's a station which means it's less likely it was a scrape, but rather it has been faded with time. Considering the average wear and tear of a station, especially one that most likely hasn't engaged in any battles yet, is still in commission means its old. Very old."
"With that conclusion and the design could you think of a specific time period?"
"It's hard to say. The design of stations while having been updated, there are still several that resemble this one. The paint tells me more than the design. It's been allowed to fade, but the station is clearly not derelict. So, it is being maintained but not for looks. It's probably been at the very least a century or two." Harry said as he eyed the station. Stations were obviously kept around for long periods of time with how expensive they were to make. Most would rather keep servicing one until it was literally too old to continually working properly. They could usually last a full century before most needed to fully get rid of them.
This one was very old by those standards but also remarkably well kept. It must have cost a fortune to keep it working even with the other upgrades and that must mean that the station had something on or about it that was so important the it couldn't be changed.
"So, it's an old, well kept, Republic spy station."
"Its original design was Republic but… the other changes aren't. The Republic has some upgrades like this from that time, but they look different. Why would they use these designs if they already had other designs to do the same thing? No, they were designed by someone else.
"No, the amount of money to do this and then the amount to maintain it moving around would have been noticed. Especially for how long this has been here… No, this was made by the Empire." Harry said finally.
"How can you be sure?"
"They are the only others who could have not only the resources to do this but also could do it silently because they were still in hiding at that point."
"I have been on the Dark Council for years and have never heard of a station out in the Maelstrom Nebula. And given what you say it is capable of, I can't possibly imagine why.
"You're right. Given your position, you most definitely would have heard of this. Which means there is someone within the Empire who can command massive amounts of resources, with no one knowing. Someone who can easily use Sith resources on something that does not directly aid the Empire."
"You're getting to the Emperor aren't you. You are saying this is something he commissioned." Marr stated.
"It would be my guess. Though its purpose I couldn't say."
"Could it have to do with this ritual you speak of." Marr asked. Harry frowned in thought.
"I don't know enough about the ritual to answer either way. It is entirely possible and the lengths it has gone to stay hidden leads me to agree with that. After all, it was complete luck that it was found in the first place if what you tell me is true." Harry said.
"In that case, we should go and deal with this." Marr said. Harry rose an eyebrow.
"What do you mean. We are on the verge of the attack on Dromund Kaas." Harry pointed out.
"Please, we have weeks before a decision is made. We can be back in a week. A week and a half at the latest. I imagine those politicians would welcome the extra time to waste on the frivolous." Darth Marr said, putting a hint of annoyance on the word politician. Harry sighed.
"Not if the time is bought by us gallivanting to do some secret mission without their approval." Harry pointed out.
"You're the commander are you not. You have the highest military power. What could they possibly do? Marr asked sarcastically.
"This isn't the Empire; fear does not keep these people in line. If there is no trust then they will act against as much as they can."
"The weak will always push back against their betters. But a boot does not concern itself with what ants think of it."
"Then it is a good thing for them that I am not a boot and I don't look at them as ants."
"As that weakness I sense from you my apprentice?"
"The next time we meet, I am sure I can give you a firsthand experience to see how weak I am." Harry bit back with obvious steel entering his tone. Darth Marr did not immediately respond.
"Hmph, at least you still have some backbone. I will be leaving with a fleet in twenty-four hours to check out this station. You can deal with the politics." Marr said to him before cutting the connection.
"Goddamn it Marr." Harry muttered as he rubbed his forehead to assuage the growing headache he felt coming on.
"What was that all about?" He heard Satele ask from the direction of his bedroom door. He didn't even bother to look over as he answered.
"Marr found something near the outer rim in the Maelstrom Nebula. A secret station of some kind. He believes… WE believe it was created under direct order of the Emperor and that he has kept it hidden for some reason." Harry told her as he sat on a sofa, leaned back, and closed his eyes.
"Sounds important. Are we going to do something about it?" Satele asked, switching into her battle commander mode.
"We wouldn't be able to explain why we were leaving to the Chancellor or the Senate for fear he might find out.
"I'll convince the Chancellor the importance of the mission. This could have to do something with the ritual and if it is, we could strike a premature blow." Satele said.
"It could give away the fact that we know about his plans and are trying to stop them. It might cause him to act more erratically." Harry pointed out, turning to look at her.
"You think he doesn't suspect at this point and he hasn't heard murmurings from what we have told the Republic commanders.
"Possibly. But this could move us in his mind from possible threat to an assured one. You deal with those two types differently." Harry replied back.
"It sounds like Marr is going with or without you." Satele shot back.
"Yes, but Marr is still an unknown as far as the Emperor is concerned. None truly know at this point why he has aligned with the Republic. The Emperor might believe he stumbled upon the station by accident. If we go, with the whispers he might have heard, it changes the situation."
"POTENTIALLY. It potentially changes the situation and only if all these assumptions you make are accurate."
"… Do you think we should go with him then? Is that your official recommendation?" Harry asked seriously as he looked her directly in the eye.
"It is. If you say no then I will defer to your judgment because you are more experienced, but that would be my official recommendation." Satele said back. Harry looked at her for a moment before giving her a slow nod.
"Just... Give me some time. We have a full day before Marr is planning to leave. I'll give my answer to you in a few hours… and we can go from there." Harry said as he weighed the decision in his mind.
"Very well. I'm going back to sleep then. Wake me when you have decided." Satele said, her voice losing its professional quality and going back to a much softer tone.
"Alright. I think I am going to stay up and continue to deliberate for a while longer." Harry said. He watched her go back to their shared bedroom before moving over to a viewing window that looked upon the fleet, he commanded as well as the star they were orbiting. He sat on an armchair that looked out and quieted his mind. He looked to see if the force had any insight for him. In truth, it almost felt like everything around him was a buzz, but nothing was directed at him.
"Give me something. Just one goddamn sign… please." Harry whispered as if he were talking to no one but himself.
"Ask and you shall receive."
A Day Later
"Has it been taken care of?" Harry asked as he looked at the fleet moving to position to enter hyperspace.
"Yes. The Chancellor was naturally skeptical, of course, but I managed to convince him that this mission was potentially incredibly important without going into detail… Speaking of which, you never told me why you decided to change your mind." Satele said as she stood next to him stoically on the bridge as she also gazed at their shared fleet.
"It's… complicated. I will explain, but I am not sure if I have truly processed it myself." Harry murmured behind his mask. Had it been anyone who didn't have a direct connection to his surface thoughts, they probably wouldn't have heard him.
"I see. Well, I suppose it doesn't matter too much. Marr is getting in position and is about to enter hyperspace. We will follow right behind him." Satele said before walking away to go consult with one of the technicians.
"I hope to see you soon my friend…"
"We should use both fleets to surround the space station. Even with the Sith fleet being almost completely dead, by this point they have most likely conscripted ships from private companies and possibly civilians. They probably have enough for one good fleet. Nothing to stand up to us most likely, but we should not underestimate them." Marr spoke with a commanding voice over the holo console in the war room. There were several admirals also on the line as well as starship commanders who listened intently.
"I agree with that assessment. We should also not discount the possibility that the Emperor has other resources and hidden fleets he might send after us. We don't know what is hidden in this facility or how far they will go to protect it. This could be easy or extremely difficult." Harry pointed out as well.
"We will use the dreadnoughts and cruisers to form a defensive perimeter around the space station to both protect it as well as prevent others from reaching it. We will also have our starships out to allow for quick lightning attacks if any enters the system as well as allowing for a quick exit if need be." Satele said as a three model also appeared allowing the various commanding members of the fleet to see physically what she meant.
"A fleet this size, they will know we are coming and they most likely have weapons to protect themselves from and assault. What is the plan to possibly deal with this?" One of the Admirals asked.
"We will engage in a diamond pattern if this happens while focusing fire on the station's weapons while doing our best to preserve the station itself." Satele answered.
"Do we have schematics of the station?" Another Admiral asked.
"Not this specific one, but I have found some of the blueprints of the station build that this one was based on. There are obviously some differences, but the main power reactors and most of the exhaust system should definitely be the same. The interior of the space and rooms might be different, however." Harry said as he forwarded the blueprints to each ship.
"Hmph. Do we even have an idea of what we're going to be looking for in this station?" An officer that commanded the Starfighter squads on his ship.
"Truthfully, no. Only that it is important. Because of this we're going to have a limited group go on board and deal with whatever is in the station."
"How limited exactly?"
"I misspoke, there will be multiple teams that board, but several of them will simply be to aid in securing the main areas of the station. Satele, you will lead a vanguard group to deal with the rest of the station along with me. Marr, you will be the last commanding officer aboard. I trust you will be able to keep the fleet standing if something does indeed attack us?" Harry asked rhetorically.
"Of course." Marr said back in an almost insulted manner.
"Good. If that is all, I believe it is time to get ready to exit hyperspace and prepare for our designated roles." Harry said. He saw several nods before the console turned off and the meeting ended.
"You suspect something about the station, don't you?" Satele asked quietly.
"What do you mean?" Harry asked in a delayed manner as he watched the last of the officers that had been in the room with them leave so only, they remained.
"You know what I mean. I can feel you hiding it from me. So, what Is it?"
"I… do have an idea, but… if I am wrong, then it would be better if I had not brought it up in the first place. I hope I am right, but I can't be sure until I see it with my own eyes." Harry said back trying to satisfy Satele's curiosity, though he knew it would not work.
"Fine, you won't tell me, I can see that. Can you at least tell me if this thing you hope to find is good?" m
"Potentially. It could also end up being bad. It depends on the circumstances surrounding it which I couldn't even hope to guess at." Harry admitted. That, at least, was the truth. Harry had no idea if what he believed was in this station was in any proper condition.
"Fine, I trust you even if you won't tell me what this thing in the station is. Though I expect you to make this up to me." Satele said sternly as did her best to look him in the eyes while he wore his mask.
"As my lady commands." Harry said with a ghost of a smile, relieved that she was willing to no longer push him on this.
"You still look ridiculous in that thing. Alright, let's go to the bridge and get ready to exit hyperspace. We should be any minute now.
"You're right. Let's go then." Harry agreed before getting up and following her to the lifts that would take them to the bridge. They rode in relative silence until they arrived, though as soon as the doors opened, there was an immediate change of pace felt as they observed the energy in the room as the various ship's piloting technicians were preparing for both leaving hyperspace as well as possible battle.
"Status?" Harry called out as he made his way over to a chair specifically made for him to command from.
"Sir, we will be arriving in two minutes into the system. We already have the shield generators up and working and almost have our weapon bays ready for a possible violent encounter." A Captain said while approaching him. The man was known as Cpt. Vegaro. It was a strange name and the man was from a small mining colony before rising through the ranks of the Republic military. He was rather new to the ship, but he handled himself with distinction. He was also the man that had control of the ship when Harry was away.
"Excellent. What's the word on the station, they must have noticed our approach by now?" Harry asked.
"The scouting party hasn't yet reported any sign that they have yet."
"But we are still receiving signals from the team correct?" Harry asked for clarification.
"Yes sir, every thirty seconds unless they notice something, in which case they are to report immediately."
"Excellent. Check the weapons bay again and have them step up their set up if they're not done. Once done prepare for taking the reins once I depart. That'll be all Captain." Harry said as he nodded at the man.
"Sir." The man said in acknowledgement before walking away to go do what he had been told.
"I am going down to the hanger to make sure the boarding teams are ready." Satele told him. Harry nodded.
"I shall keep you updated on anything major. Keep your comm on you." Harry said as she walked away.
"Always." She called over her shoulder before disappearing.
Harry sighed and took in a deep breath as he felt himself tensing in preparation.
"Lord Marr just exited hyperspace and reports no enemies sighted outside of the station." A technician reported.
"Good, but keep the shields up and the weapons hot." Harry ordered.
"Exiting hyperspace in fifteen seconds." Another person said.
Harry said nothing and just prepared for what was about to happen.
"Exiting in three… two… one… now!"
As soon as the man finished, the streaking stars that they had been flying past seemed to stop abruptly and they suddenly were looking directly at a space station that was illuminated easily by the star it was orbiting.
"Status?" Harry called out.
"All systems are green and we are approaching the station. Lord Marr is already approaching the station."
"Are the station's weapons operational?"
"One moment… Yessir, they just came online. Looks like we caught them by surprise."
"That's what I wish to hear. Marr is likely already targeting. Slide into the specified position and start taking out the surface cannons on that station. Prepare to deal with starfighters as I believe I see the station's hanger doors opening." Harry called.
"Yessir. Moving the ship into position.
"The fighter squads have been ordered to start deploying and get ready to engage enemy starfighters."
"Once the enemy starfighters have been revealed, get me a 3D model of them." Harry ordered.
"Ships are exiting the station." Another person called out.
"What about our ships?"
"Three squads have been deployed with more on the way."
"Good." Harry said as he watched the formations the enemy squads were taking.
"Models are coming up on your console now, sir." Another technician said. Harry nodded before getting up and stepping over to the holo-console close by. Indeed, a blue holographic model of the enemy starfighters appeared. Harry eyed them looking for weaknesses. They were Sith designed unsurprisingly, but clearly of an older design. Well kept, sure, but older nonetheless. They were likely more maneuverable, but their onboard weapon systems likely couldn't do nearly the same amount of damage to the Republic starfighters of this generation.
"The ships aren't nearly as numerous, but they seem to be forming small perimeters around the bombers. They likely know they can't stack up against us in a fight and hope to get the bombers to cause the most damage. Order our fighters to target those bombers. They will have trouble getting past our shields, but a concentrated attack might be able to do it." Harry ordered.
"Yessir. Reaching out now." Was the response he received. He then used his communicator and reached out to Satele.
"Yes?" She said as she answered.
"Marr is dealing with some of the surface turrets on the station but were being delayed as several enemy Starfighter squadrons are escorting bombers to stop us. They shouldn't penetrate our defenses, but they are slowing us down." Harry told her.
"What about the rest of the fleet?" Several just dropped out of hyperspace, but we're still waiting for more than half of our ships. The others are getting into position and will soon send more aid. I assume this will be done within ten to twenty minutes before we have completely secured the area around the station. Then it will simply be making sure that none can come into the system to aid it."
"Alright, well please keep me updated."
"Of course. Signing off." Harry said before cutting the connection and returning his attention to the battle. He watched his squadrons engaging with the enemy and then soon watched more starfighters from the other ships to join the fray. The Sith fighters were soon outnumbered and it became a matter of how long it would take to dispatch them all. After near ten minutes, it was simply stragglers left and most of the ships in the fleet that had come had gotten into position.
"Sir, you have an incoming call from Lord Marr."
"Patch it through." Harry ordered. Immediately the floating torso and head of his master appeared.
"Commander Peverell… I assume you will be boarding the ship soon?"
"That is correct."
"I also assume you noticed the rather inconvenient issue with this station?"
"You mean, how I cannot seem to sense anything inside of it? Yes, I did notice." Harry said with a frown. That had been something that had bothered him immensely. It meant there was most likely some form of Sith alchemy at work to prevent force users from being able to sense what was inside. That was extremely concerning.
"For safety, if I do not hear from you in an hour once you board, I will destroy the station with or without you in it." He told him. Harry thought about that for a moment before nodding.
"That is fair. I will endeavor to keep you updated on what we find."
"While I am sure the rest of your ships' members don't trust me, if you need back up, I have prepared several troop ships with warriors to aid you. Do not hesitate to ask."
"That is uncharacteristically kind of you." Harry stated suspiciously.
"Hardly. This mission and your role in it are important given who we are likely dealing with. Destroying the station is something I only wish to do if I believe it to be absolutely necessary." Marr shot back. Harry nodded at the rationalization. He expected it after all.
"Very well. I hope I shall not need them, but I will inform you if I do. Thank you, Lord Marr" Harry said politely, not breaking character. Marr nodded and cut the connection without saying anything more.
"Sir, it looks like the battle has come to an end, the last of the enemy starfighters has been taken care of and the surface turrets have also been destroyed.
"Excellent, prepare the landing party to leave and tell them I will be joining them momentarily. Captain, you have the bridge.
"Yessir. Good luck on your mission."
"Thank you, Captain." Harry said before heading down to the hanger. When he arrived to it he saw several ships waiting already loaded up and ready to take off. Only one had its door still open, showing it was the one waiting for him specifically. He boarded the ship and looked at the various Republic commandos inside.
"Commander." They also welcomed in close to unison.
"At ease, I hope you are ready for anything men."
"We are, as always sir."
"Good. Pilot, take us out of here." Harry said up to the cockpit as he grabbed a handle hanging from the ceiling of the ship.
With that, he felt the ship lift into the air and move itself out of the hanger. With that he felt it start to accelerate. He waited patiently in the silence of the ship. The ride wasn't long considering his ship was the closest to the hanger entrance of the station.
"We're approaching, but there seem to be some ground units waiting for us." The pilot called back.
"Can we deal with them?" Harry asked back.
"Enough to land, but we won't be able to take sustained fire. The ships aren't exactly built to take a beating."
"Understood, do what you can pilot. Alright troops, prepare yourselves for a rough arrival under fire. I shall do my best to block the fire of anything that comes our way, but I am not going to be able to stop everything. Make sure to take cover. Understood?"
"Good. Open the door and get ready to jump out." Harry ordered. His men quickly started forming around him at the door of the ship. Harry could feel when they entered the hanger of the station by the shift in the gravity around him. Almost as soon as the door was open, Harry had to ignite his blade and start deflecting bolts that flew at his ship. Harry jumped from the ship and landed on the floor. He looked up and took in exactly what he was dealing with.
The hangar was more heavily fortified than he thought. There were gun placements in several places and pairs of them protecting every door that led further into the station. There were also portable barricades placed in a semi-circle around the main part of the hanger. There were Sith troops with blaster all over the place as well as what looked like Sith Force users in several locations. Harry frowned as he started to continually block blaster fire. It looked like this would be more difficult than he thought.
"There are more of them than we thought. We will have to do this slow and steady. Make sure that now unauthorized ships make it off this station. As long as we are not on a timeline moving slower shouldn't be an issue. Inform Commander Satele of this as well." Harry ordered to the troop commander who just landed next to him and was using a metal crate for cover.
"Yessir, but we need to move. We're almost completely exposed out here." The commander said back.
"Leave that to me." Harry said as he switched from a two-hand form to a one hand form with his blade. He used one hand to continue to block the blaster while he raised the other and reached out into the force. He quickly lifted the rest of the metal crates and giant shipping containers and brought them to his men to form a defense line between them and the incoming fire. He started stacking them until it almost completely covered the incoming troops. Unfortunately, there was no longer enough for when Satele's troops landed which meant they would have to share this cover. It also meant they would be a more compacted target for their enemy.
"Commander Satele has been informed, sir." The troop commander said as he laid down some suppressive fire against the enemy. Harry saw that he actually managed to hit several enemy troops. He also saw that several force users approached them. Three to be exact.
"Good. We have approaching enemy. I will engage them directly. Try to take advantage and deal with the enemy shooters while they may be distracted."
"Do you think they will shoot at you."
"Not while I am closely engaged with their own men. At least not likely." Harry said back as he got ready to jump out from behind their defenses.
"Understood. Be careful, sir."
"You as well trooper."
With that Harry jumped over the improvised barricade and charged at the three force users. All of them were male and were wearing what looked to be light armor. All with a cloak over them. He noticed their armor all had a golden symbol he did not recognize. Almost like the point of an arrow facing upward. It might even have been similar to a minimalist image of a Sith starship.
Harry didn't even bother to question them as he tossed his lightsaber and caught in a reverse grip before lifting to deflect the first blow of the incoming warrior. He knocked it back so hard that the man grunted and stepped several steps away. Harry didn't bother with him, though, as he spun the lightsaber back to a normal grip before raising it to deflect a blow aimed to cleave him in half diagonally. This man, however, managed to take his blow and as his blade knocked back, used the momentum to arch it into another diagonal strike, this time in an upward motion. Harry, however, had copied the movement except he brought his second hand to join the first on his blade to generate even more strength. This time the hit did knock away the man's hands, leaving his body completely exposed. Harry quickly closed the small distance between them and buried his blade in the man's chest.
He heard a small gasp from the pale Sith Warrior. Although he couldn't see it, he felt the force warn him that the last man he hadn't engaged was trying to strike him in the back while he was distracted. He yanked the blade out and spun around while lifting his blade to block the blade just in time to before it came down on him. Harry looked past the crossed blades and saw the Warrior was glaring at him with hate and anger. Harry ignored it before pushing forward to force the man on his back foot and forcing him away for a moment, allowing Harry to launch a series of swipes with his blade. The man moved quickly and managed to block the first three. Unfortunately for him, when he made to block his fourth strike Harry stopped his strike and reached out and covered his hand with the force. He caught the blade causing his enemies' eyes to widen significantly in shock. Harry, however did not bother to revel in the wonder his enemy felt as for the second time, he buried his blade into the stomach of his enemy.
Harry watched the body drop to the floor as the Sith warrior died. Harry then finally looked back to the Sith warrior who he initially knocked back and who was currently the last of his compatriots to live. He looked at lot more wary of Harry now that he just watched him kill his two allies in quick succession. It probably had been less than six seconds since he had made his first two strikes and already two were dead.
Instead of directly engaging him. The enemy waited as he slowly lifted his bed showing he was ready for Harry but was going to wait for him to make the first move. Harry scoffed to himself as he looked at the man before he started striding over to the man like a predator who approached his prey not in a sprint but with a walk because he knew there was no escape.
Harry brought his blade up in a flash before smashing it down with his full strength. The man lifted his blade to meet his. He did manage to the block, but was clearly unable to fully take the hit as Harry pushed their crossed blades towards him to the point, they almost were touching him. The man took a step back, but was able to brace himself enough to stop Harry's push, though he was clearly sweating from the effort. Just as quickly as the pressure appeared, Harry pulled the blade away and went in for slash across the man horizontally. The man was able to meet him again with his own blade, but again could barely take the hit. Harry narrowed his eyes as he saw the man was barely able to handle his strikes. With that, he pushed the man and had him almost completely on the defense.
Harry pushed and continually brought his blade close to cutting the man in two. While he continued to have the man on the defense, he looked past the man and observed the situation around them. It looked Satele had arrived and had taken control of the men. They were making real headway against the firing line. He needed to end this.
He paid closer attention to his enemy. He could just wait until the man's strength simply gave out against his own which would most likely be soon, but Harry felt it would not be soon enough. He would have to do something to get the immediate advantage. He already thought of a plan.
Instead of launching his next strike with his blade he raised his empty opposite hand and unleashed an unexpected force blast against the man. He was launched backward almost ten feet and fell heavily on his back. Harry immediately planted one foot back before launching it forward and twisting his body to launch his lightsaber with extreme force at the recovering Sith. He watched the man's eyes widen who had been halfway up before he fell backward and into a backwards roll as the blade flew over him. Harry smirked as the hand he had thrown his blade with was still extended. He quickly made a fist and watched the blade that was now less than ten feet behind the Sith, who was attempting to get up again, stop and stay frozen in midair. He then violently pulled his hand back to his side. The blade then came spinning violently back to him. The Sith looked at him in the eye and noticed his stance. He stood in confusion before recognition entered his eyes. Harry smirked as he saw the men's minds screaming at him to turn around, but he knew it wouldn't be in time. He watched as only the man's head was able to even start turning as the blade went right through his neck and continued to Harry.
He reached out and grabbed the blade from midair. He then looked at the Sith who stood frozen for a moment. He then sank to his knees and fell face first to the ground. As soon as his body fully hit the ground, his head separated and rolled away.
"When you're done being impressed with yourself, perhaps you could come aid the rest of us." He heard Satele yell over to him. It brought him back to what was happening around him and also reminded the Sith troops that he was no longer within close proximity of any of their allies. They once again opened fire on him, causing him to go back to deflecting blaster shots as he made his way back to Satele.
"Was that necessary?" He asked as he returned to her and the rest of his troops.
"Was standing over your fallen enemies like you're some kind of god of war necessary?" She shot back rhetorically as she deflected a blaster bolt back to its sender killing the man as it collided with his face.
"Whatever. We need to deal with these men. Do you have a plan?"
"Yes, you and I charge the line and start wreaking havoc on their own defense line. They'll panic, allowing our troops to move forward and better position themselves to eliminate them all." Satele said.
"Seems a little risky."
"What, can't block a little blaster fire?" She asked sarcastically. She didn't wait for him to respond as she jumped over the crates they were using for cover and charged.
"That woman…" Harry muttered as he jumped the line and followed after. He could see why Satele was less concerned. Her dual sided lightsaber allowed her to deflect blasters much easier than he could with his single blade. A shame his other blade was recently destroyed in combat and he had not yet gotten a replacement. He either blocked or dodged as many blaster bolts as he could.
He watched Satele jump over their defensive line and line behind several of the soldiers. They quickly turned to meet her, though the only difference it made was which direction they faced when they died. Satele lunged and spun her blade around herself killing several men in one movement. Harry himself finally reached the line as well and landed next to Satele. They instinctively went back to back and faced both directions the line went. For a split moment in time between only them, it had seemed as if the battle paused.
"Are you ready?" She asked.
"Then let's do this." She yelled before charging. He followed the action in the opposite direction. He immediately deflected a blaster back to the first man in his way, causing him to catch the bolt to his chest. He then slid past the man and stabbed his blade into the chest of the trooper next to him. He brought the blade all the way to the hilt into the man before violently force pushing the man backwards and off of it.
The body smashed into a man further back instantly knocking him down, causing a brief distraction that Harry capitalized on to close the distance to more troops. With a lightning fast sweeping strike, he decapitated three more men and used their bodies as shields to continue pushing forward and down the line.
Although he hadn't cared for the comparison, Satele was right. Fighting these troopers, especially in close range left almost no hope for them against him. They were panicked and reeked of fear as he pushed forward and tore through them with both his blade and the force. It really did almost make him feel like some sort of invincible god of war.
He continued to carve his way through the troops and attained their full attention at this point, allowing their own commandos to push forward and start aiding them. The multiple angles they were being attacked at and with such force proved to be too much for the Sith troops and they quickly fell before them. As he cut down his last opponent, he took a breath and looked across the hanger towards where he could feel Satele was at and watched, he implanted one side of her blade into a troop before quickly deactivated and walked away as the man simply fell over dead. It looked rather cold, but he knew it was simply her way of dealing with so much death. He walked over to the main door that led out of the hanger and into the rest of the station. It was there they all regrouped.
"This station has more defenses than we anticipated. Perhaps it would be unwise for you to travel on your own." Satele suggested. It sounded professional, but he could feel through their bond that she was actually concerned for his wellbeing.
"Their defenses are stronger than we thought, yes, but there is unlikely a single room big enough to launch the same type of assault. It could also be possible that they simply sent a majority of their forces to try and bottleneck us at the hanger.
"They must have known they wouldn't be able to stop us long." Satele commented with a frown. Harry tilted his head in thought.
"You are correct. Which means they were delaying us. But why… Hmm. They could be attempting to destroy something before we can reach it or they are hoping reinforcements will come." Harry speculated.
"I'll alert the fleet then."
"Excellent. I will push forward searching for what is on this ship they are hiding. You clear the various rooms with the troops… I promise to act cautiously." Harry added as he saw the look Satele gave him. She nodded hesitantly, but said nothing further.
"Good. Alright then I shall leave you to your task." Harry said as he moved away and down a hallway quickly.
He turned a corner and was out of view of his own allies.
"Alright Surik, where is he?"
Several Days Previous
"Ask and you shall receive."
Harry jumped to his feet, ignited his blade and pointed it in the direction of the voice. He had no idea who It was but their skill level to be able to get on his private ship, and stay under both his and Satele's senses meant they were dangerous. When he saw who it was, however, he calmed, if only slightly. Standing in front of him was a force ghost. Not just any though, it was a woman he was sure he had met before.
"You. I know you… You're that woman that came to meet Bastila all those years ago... Meetra Surik. The Jedi who took down the Sith Triumvirate." He said slowly as if unsure if he was truly believing what he was saying.
"You have a good memory Harry. Though I shouldn't be surprised knowing now who you are." She said with a smirk. He narrowed his eyes.
"If I remember correctly, you disappeared on your own search for Revan. I had assumed you died, my condolences."
"Thank you. Though that is not why I am here."
"That much I could figure on my own. So, why is a Jedi who mysteriously disappeared two centuries ago coming to me just now."
"I would have rather come much earlier, unfortunately it seems you have some sort of position that stopped me from directly coming to you without permission." She replied. She seemed to hint before, though she already knew what said position was.
"Don't you know what position I hold."
"I have guesses, of course, but I am one with the Force and so far, have been limited in what I could find out. Would you mind telling me?"
"Very well. I am the Master of Death. A foolish and misleading title if there ever was one. In truth, I am his chosen champion, or vessel. As a force user who became one with the force, technically you cheated death in a way by not entering his domain. As such, you are not allowed to directly interfere with him or me. An agreement made between my benefactor and yours as it were."
"Hmm. How fascinating. Even now, being one with the force it seems I still have so much to learn."
"You did not come here to learn from me though. You said I called for you. I am sure I didn't."
"Not directly, no. In truth, I have wished to reach out for a long time to someone who I believed capable of embarking on a mission of grave importance. You were obviously my first choice and you will understand why in a moment. Unfortunately, as I said, I was not allowed to reach out to you. However, you stated a wish to be given guidance on something I am directly related to which was enough to seemingly get by whatever was blocking me from you and allowed me to present myself."
"Hmph. A loophole then. Fine then, you said you wished to contact me, well now you have. What is it you have to say?"
"The station you have found is a prison. One of the most important to the Emperor based on the lengths he has gone to hide it."
"A prison. What is he imprisoning there?"
"Not what, who. The station has only one prisoner and it is one of the greatest threats the Emperor faced, though still not one that forced him to show his true power. A prisoner who you were one very acquainted with." She finished. Harry absorbed all the information and his mind felt like it was going a mile a minute as it put all the pieces together of what she was saying. Finally, it clicked and he froze. He looked her directly in the eye and held her gaze. He felt it, the longing and anticipation building up inside of him.
"You can't mean…" He could not even finish the question.
"Your thoughts are correct. The station is the secret prison of our mutual friend, former Jedi Master and Dark Lord of the Sith, Revan."
"Alright Surik, where is he?"
"Follow this hallway till its end and make a right. There will be a force wielder with a ten-man patrol. Plow though them."
"Got it." Was all he said as he pushed his body harder and was almost at an all-out sprint. He saw the turn Surik had spoken of and pulled out his blade and ignited it. He could feel the Sith force user leading the men and determined him to be at a moderate Sith Lord level. Not enough to be a challenge for him though. He would use the confined space to his advantage and make quick work of the man.
As soon as he rounded the corner, he unleashed a force blast behind him to launch himself forward extremely quickly. He saw the Force user look at him with surprise and the men behind him start raising their weapons in an almost slow motion from his perspective. He watched the Sith Lord ignite and raise his blade. Unfortunately, Harry had no plans to play at this moment. He raised his empty fist as he quickly approached. The Sith looked confused at what was he doing until he watched flames spark to life around it.
Harry let out a quick yell as he brought his currently flaming fist forward and slammed it against the blade of the opposing Sith. As soon as it did, the fire that had stayed concentrated around his fist violently expanded outwards and blasted forward through the hallway. Harry was sure the men were screaming, but the roar of the fire drowned it out. The fire soon died out and Harry saw nothing left but eleven charred bodies like on the floor. He grunted in satisfaction. That was the first real spell he has cast in a while. It had come just as he easy as he remembered.
"Still got it." He said to himself in satisfaction before casting a quick spell to break down the bodies before continuing to push forward.
He ran into several more groups as he moved through the station while listening to the directions Surik gave him. He barely engaged any though, and instead unleashed power area of effect spells in the compact hallways that left virtually no escape or defense of his enemies. He had almost forgotten how easy it had been to dispatch with the average force user when he was going full force and not limiting himself due to his cover.
"How much farther Surik? We must be near the center." Harry called out.
"We are almost there. Can you not feel it yet?" She asked as a whisper in his ear. He frowned.
"You tell me."
Harry growled but did as he was told. He reached out deeper into his feeling with the force. At first, he didn't understand what Surik was talking about. He hadn't felt anything ahead of them… Wait, that was it. The area in front of them felt completely devoid of the force. It was just like what the station had felt like from the outside.
"It's cut off. They blocked it off so no one outside of the room could sense him."
"It's worse than that. The connection goes both ways this time."
"Both ways… You're saying once I am inside, I won't be able to feel what is happening outside of the room." Harry murmured.
"Yes, but that was not what I was getting at."
"Think! They are keeping him in there. He's been in a room cut off from the outside for close to almost two and a half centuries." Surik hissed.
"Oh. This is not good." Was all Harry could think to say.
"Exactly, I am unsure of what his condition will be. I also will not be able to contact once you enter the room. Figure out a way to break whatever is keeping the inside and outside separated."
"I will." He said as he reached the door that led into the room where Harry believed Revan was located.
"Thank you." Harry said as he opened the door to the room. He stepped into the brightly lit room slowly.
It was rather empty so it was easy to notice the things that stood out in it. Harry sucked in a breath as he finally laid his eyes on his former master and one of his greatest friends. He looked lanky and was missing the muscle and bulk he used to have. He was also frozen in what looked like a pillar of light. Harry felt his anger bubble to the surface.
The other thing he noticed in the room was an unexpected occupant. The man was sitting on a metal crate looking unconcerned at Harrys arrival. Harry narrowed his eyes at the man and approached slowly. The man slowly stood and Harry was finally able to grasp his full height. The man, if he could be called that, was huge, he looked to be close to seven feet tall and was almost completely made of muscle. His legs, however looked like they were cybernetics. Which meant they would most likely be stronger than a normal leg, but unable to channel the force. The man was wearing a cape that was attached to his armor, which seemed to be a custom heavy piece.
"I should have expected it would not be so easy as Harry ignited his blade." With Revan in the room and in close proximity, he would be unable to use his area of effect spells to quickly overwhelm his opponent. It also meant that he couldn't use most his spells unless he got in close.
He eyed the man and took a moment to take stock of his force presence. It was impressively high, especially considering he was missing large parts of his lower body. This man was definitely on a Darth level and certainly one of the more powerful ones.
"Are you ready Jedi?" The giant asked him as he pulled the biggest saber hilt he had ever seen before.
"I am not a Jedi. But I am still your enemy." Harry said as he ignited his blade. The Giant ignited his and Harry eyed it. The blade looked like it was crackling as random sparks occasionally came off of it. That was probably not good. Harry took a stance and waited.
He didn't have to wait long as the giant stood one moment and then launched himself forward in another. Harry's eyes widened at the speed the man was able to achieve even with his large size. Harry was almost caught off guard as the giant reached him and tried to bring his blade down on top of him. Harry didn't even try to block it as he was sure the strength the blow would overwhelm him. Instead, he calmed himself and strafed to the side and twisted his body so he was now to the side of the man. As the giant brought his blade down and moved his blade in for a stab to the man's side.
The man surprised him again when he quickly rolled to the opposite side and away from his blade. Again, he surprised Harry with his speed, but this time it caught him less off guard. He quickly rushed in and threw several slashes at the man, which he was clearly able to keep up with. Harry frowned as he tried to get closer. If he could get a spell of, he could end this, but the man was too fast. If he actually wanted to hit the man, he would need to get in close, but unfortunately, he was able to keep Harry at a distance.
Harry once more tried to engage him directly, but if he did it too long the man would use his strength to overwhelm him forcing Harry to constantly jump back before reengaging. He had to think and come up with something.
Harry tried to experiment and sent several powerful Force pushes at the man, but he seemed to simply shrug them off. The caused him to pause, but they didn't even make him stumble back. Harry gritted his teeth at that and then tried to use various things in the room to hit the man with but he seemed rather observant and was able to either block or slice apart anything Harry threw at him.
Harry knew he was being overwhelmed. He didn't know who this man was but he was extremely skilled in multiple lightsaber forms. That, along with his immense strength and matching speed made him extremely dangerous to duel in close quarters. His lack of availability to use spells that would properly dispose of the man further deepened his problems. And anything weaker would need a direct hit that he could dodge. And even then, he seemed to reinforce his body with the force beyond anything he had seen before which meant whatever spell he was hit with, he would most likely not taste the full brunt of the spell. He was running out of options.
"You're slowing down Jedi. You will be dead soon." The man said as he continued to put Harry on the defensive. Harry narrowed his eyes at the man's word. Death… that was unlikely all things considered… Wait. That was it!
"Funny. I was about to say the same to you. Look at you with no other skill except with a lightsaber. Do you even know how to connect with the Force? You are an embarrassment to anything related to the Sith." Harry said, trying to make the man angry. He needed this to look real.
"DIE!" The giant yelled. His voice vibrated through the air and Harry could feel it against his skin. Harry ignored it and deflected several of the slashes the man sent his way instead of dodging. He grunted in pain. He was right to avoid these up to this point instead of trying to take them head. He deflected an upward rising vertical slash, but his arms were blown back from the force leaving him completely exposed. The Sith took advantage and brought his blade in for a stab and buried his lightsaber in Harry's chest the same way he had down earlier in the hanger.
Harry gasped as the air temporarily left and time seemed to freeze. He slowly looked up into the face of the giant who smirked down at him in triumph.
"Time's up Jedi." The giant said to him. Harry leaned forward and put his hand on the man's shoulder as he struggled to stay upright.
"It… It would seem so. Shame, you were quite the opponent." Harry struggled to say as he tried to stay awake.
"I wish I could say the same." The man sneered.
"Spoken like someone who thinks they've won." Harry murmured with a forming smile just loud enough for the man to hear. The man looked confused at his words and then suddenly realized his blade was still in Harrys chest and that Harry for some reason had not died. It was too late, unfortunately for the man though. With as much speed as he could muster, Harry snapped his other hand up with his deactivated blade still in it and right under the man's chin. His eyes showed shock as he noticed the movement.
The blade ignited in an instant and went straight through the bottom of the man's skull and out of the top of it. Killing him instantly. With that, Harry finally fell to the ground. He watched the giant join him soon after though only one of them was still alive. The blade that had been burning in his chest till that point had now been deactivated and fell to the floor, allowing the lethal wound on his chest to stitch it closed.
Harry sat their breathing heavily as he waited for his body to heal enough that he could get up and finally move around. It took nearly ten minutes before this happened and still the wound was repairing the internal damage.
'Note to self. Avoid taking a lightsaber to the chest in the future.'
He shakily stood to his feet and finally start making his way though the room to Revan. He walked slowly towards his former master and a nearby console, which he hoped would allow him to release the man. He looked at the buttons and pressed on a few of the buttons and waited for a moment as he looked at his first master.
He heard a noise like something was powering down and the pillar of light that was imprisoning his master started to flicker before fully disappearing. He watched as his master fall over and roll down away from where he had floated. Harry moved over to him slowly because he was still recovering. He dropped down to his knees and gather the man in his arms.
"Revan. Is it you? Can you hear me old friend? It's Harry. You need to wake up. I need to take you out of here." Harry said to the man as he looked at him trying to decipher if he could hear him in this state. There was no reaction. He started to feel anxiety as he didn't see Revan move.
"Revan, wake up. Please my friend. I need you to get up. I have come so far to find you. Sacrificed so much. Please!" Harry said almost pleading with the man at this point.
"…. Ha-… Harry… Is-… Is that you?"
"Revan! Thank God, you are alright." Harry said as he hugged the man in relief.
"Harry… What have you done!"
Sorry for the delay on posting. I have been busy with school as this is my last year in college. Hope you enjoy!