Chapter 1: A Fallen Master
Dazed, exhausted and aching in pain; Javif summoned every last bit of strength he had left in his body to pull himself up from the floor of the destroyed bridge complex on D1. The ringing of the emergency alarms deafen him as he raised his hand over his face and felt the broken remains of his visor, which must have taken damage during the previous attack. Ripping the thin piece of hardware from his eyes, the young Jedi threw it to one side. He didn't need them however, as a Miraluka, Javif did not see the galaxy around him like the other sentient beings.
For generations, this near-humanoid species had evolved to the point that they no longer relied on their eyes to "see". In fact Javif, like other Miraluka in the modern age was born without eyes and due to his species natural affinity to the force, they instead see though it using a technique commonly known as force sight.
Right now however, Javif is struggling to regain his "vision". He could only just make out the basic shapes and silhouettes of his surroundings . The only exception to this is the only remaining occupant of the bridge. Whenever a Miraluka finds themselves in the presence of other force sensitives, due to the sheer strength of the force within them, a Miraluka can see the force radiating off from the individual and could even determine their alignment in the light or dark side.
Javif regained his composure and stared at the silhouette of the man standing several feet away from him ... and this ones alignment has changed drastically in such a short time over the recent events. Once a solid blue aura radiated around this man, but over time this aura seemed to flicker over the course of the Outbound Flights journey. Now? This mans aura radiates a faint red. Only those who falling or have fallen to the Dark side have ever given off an aura such as this.
"Stay down, boy" C'baoth growled as he raised his hand towards Javif "You may not survive the next attack."
Javif ignored the Jedi Masters clear threat and brought himself to his feet in defiance.
"Master C'baoth" Javif exasperated, "Can't you see what you are doing? The longer this battle stretches out, the closer this dreadnaught is to destruction." The young Knight pleaded with his superior, "End this now."
"This will only end when all my enemies are crushed!" the Jedi Master shouted back, his voice filled with a venomous sting that Javif had never thought he would have heard from the legendary Master. "No one will stand in the way of my destiny".
"Even at the cost of your fellow Jedi?" uttered Javif, "My master is now one with the force because of your blind ambition!"
Suddenly there was a hiss from the nearby comms station, the channel that was used previously to communicate with the alien starships attacking the Outbound Flight was still active and a message came through in the form of a familiar voice.
"Jedi Master C'baoth ... leaders of Outbound Flight."
"Mitth'raw'nuruodo." the name hissed out through the Jedi Masters gritted teeth as the Chiss Commander continued.
"Your vessel has been disarmed, it's ability to defend itself destroyed. I offer you this one final chance to surrender and return to the Republic."
"Surrender!?" Master C'baoth spat out, "The arrogance!"
Javif took this as his chance to coax C'baoth into doing the right thing, maybe this could be the very moment that either saves or condemns the Outbound Flight. There was no other way.
"Master" urged Javif, "This is your chance ... End this before its too late."
"Outbound Flight, I await your decision."
The Jedi Master scowled as he as he hurried over to the comm station to send his reply.
At first Master C'baoth only managed to ground out a simple "So..." Before spitting out "You think you've won alien?!"
The communications display came alive and C'baoth was now once again face to face with the Commander attacking his beloved Outbound Flight; the blue skinned, red eyed Chiss, sitting in his command chair. His sharp, black uniform baring the insignia of the CEDF radiated a calm authority that matched the calculating precision of the way he addressed Master C'baoth.
"I have indeed won, I have only to give a single order." His hand shifted slightly on his control board, his finger tips coming to rest on a covered switch edged in red. "And you and all your people will die, is your pride worth so much to you?"
"A Jedi does not yielded to pride" C'baoth spat, "Nor does he yield to empty threats, he follows only the dictates of his own destiny."
"Then choose your destiny" Thawn said, "I'm told that the role of the Jedi is to serve and defend."
"You were told wrongly!" C'baoth countered aggressively, "the role of the Jedi is to lead and guide and to destroy all threats."
The unburnt corner of the Jedi Masters lip curled upwards into a bitter, sadistic smile. And without warning, Thawns body jerked back, his whole body pressing back against his seat. His hand darted up to his throat, clutching uselessly at it. The Invisible power that was now choking the life out of him wasn't something physical that the Commander could fight against, C'baoth was using the force and there was nothing that Thawn could do to stop him and Master C'baoth ... had fully fallen to the Dark side.
"MASTER C'BAOTH! NOOOOO!"
Javif couldn't let this happen, he reached out with the force and summoned his lightsaber to his hand before igniting it and charged at the occupied C'baoth. Unfortunately the fallen master was ready for him and ignited his own lightsaber with his free hand. Soon Javifs orange lightsaber locked with C'baoths green lightsaber as the two Jedi have finally come to blows.
"Foolish boy!" C'baoth growled at Javif "You think your feeble skills are a match for a master of my calibre?!"
"I cannot let you do this!" Javif pleaded.
"You cannot stop me." The Jedi Master seethed under his breath.
The master broke the blade lock and swung his lightsaber at Javif, who managed to block the attack with is own blade with ease before countering with an attack of his own, in response to his Juyo training. The two Jedi continued to exchange blows, however it didn't take long for Javif to realise that C'baoth was clearly the superior duelist. He had several years of training and experience behind him, and the fallen masters sheer strength in the force was far beyond that of the young Jedi.
The Chiss commander was barely hanging onto his life, the last gasps of air in his lungs on the verge of dissipating as he only had minutes left. Javif knew he had to do something, but he knew he couldn't overpower the Jedi Master. Though Javifs skill with a lightsaber was impressive, he wasn't that experienced in Makashi, having only a few lessons in the style since lightsaber on lightsaber combat was rare in this day and age. A training choice that Javif clearly coming to regret. Once again, Javif found is blade locked with C'baoth own and the fallen master started laughing maniacally at him.
"Face it boy" C'baoth mocked as he held back Javifs attack, "you are nothing compared too... AARRRHHH!"
It seems that the Jedi Masters lightsaber skills aren't as proficient as they used to be. There was a minor weakness in his guard exposed that Javif realised he could exploit. He released the pressure off from C'baoths blade and guided his own swiftly diagonally downwards so that the tip of his orange blade just grazed the upper forearm of the fallen Master, causing him to drop his lightsaber and break his concentration to the force which released Thawn from his grasp. Moments later the Commander killed the communication display, leaving the two Jedi to continue their battle with no distraction.
"You will regret that!" C'baoth hissed at Javif as he nursed his wound.
"Its over Master C'baoth." Javif said as he keeps his guard up towards his opponent.
"No ... No ... No." The fallen Master glared at the young Miraluka. "You have yet to see a true demonstration of my command of the Force.
Suddenly, the bridge started to vibrate violently before display monitors are ripped off from the walls and fired like projectiles right towards Javif. At first he used his lightsaber to defect the projectiles, slicing them to pieces, however C'baoth wasn't finished yet. More sections of the wall were ripped down, causing debris to rain down from above. Javif reacted in time to use his own powers to stop the debris from crushing him. Though his abilities were almost exhausted from the Mind meld that he had taken part in during the battle earlier on, Javif conjured up what remains of his strength to push away the debris, scattering it across the bridge before dropping to his knees.
"Your powers are weak, boy." The fallen Master cackled loudly "A pity, such potential, you could have proven very useful to my new order. But alas, your defiance must be brought to an end young Marr!"
Master C'baoth raised up his uninjured arm as energy began crackling from his hand. Javif drew the force into himself, gathering up what power he had left. As C'baoth unleashed an explosive charge of Force lightning straight towards Javif, but the Miraluka used the force to summon to his had C'baoth own lightsaber while at the same time igniting his own. He then crossed them in front of him and used both lightsabers to absorb the powerful energy to protect himself.
Unfortunately Javifs power in the force is dwarfed significantly by Master C'baoth, not even the twin lightsabers could absorb all the Force lightning as excess energy began sparking off. Scorching the surface surrounding Javif as he desperately pulls himself off the ground and slowly takes a few steps closer to the fallen Master.
"IMPOSSIBLE!" C'baoth cried out.
It took everything Javif had to stand his ground, but before he could take another step closer, he felt a sudden wave flow over him ... a tremor in the force. It was the alien that he intervened to save, he was retaliating, and both he and C'baoth were in great danger. However the fallen Jedi Master was too lost in the depths of the dark side and focused on ending Javifs life that he did not sense... or did not care about the impending danger.
"MASTER!" Javif desperately pleaded, "PLEASE, WE MUST..."
But all C'baoth did was laugh hysterically at the young Jedi, he was beyond the realm of reason and the danger was quickly approaching. Thinking fast, Javif dropped the guard on C'baoths green lightsaber and with force lightning still surging through the blade, he used the force to throw the lightsaber right past C'baoth head to strike a navigation station located behind the Jedi Masters. As the lightsaber made contact, the raw power within the blade caused an explosion that knocked both Jedi to the ground.
The entire bridge of D1 was now in engulfed in flames and destroyed debris littered the surrounding area. However Javif managed to crawl his way out from some debris and made his hurried over to the bridges exit. Just as he punched the control to open the doors he could hear what sounded lime grounding noises from under some metal debris nearby. He used the force to push some beams aside to find Master C'baoth, still alive but pinned to the ground.
"My ... plan" the Jedi master weakly whispered out, "It can't ... not like this."
He couldn't stay, though he would normally try and save him, there was no more time. Going against every Jedi instinct he had, Javif turned his back to C'baoth and closed the blast doors of the bridge behind him as he left.
Javif hurried his way down the empty hallway of D1, most of its crew were either killed in the previous battle with the Vagaari. The rest of the colonists were thankfully safe in the Outbound Flights central core for their protection, he had to get down there, he had to find Lorana. Suddenly the hull of the dreadnaught shook violently, nearly knocking Javif off his feet; Thawns retaliation had started.
The commander of the CEDF used a squadron of sophisticated droid snub fighters in the previous battle. But after surviving the crazed C'baoths attempt on his life, he activated a secondary command layer pre-set programmed into the droids. As soon as they reached the Outbound Flight, the snub fighters started a series of raids against the dreadnaught. Several fighters rammed into key structural points in the ships hull, which severely damaged the interior doors of the ship that were essential in an emergency. Particularly in the event of a hull breach, which was exactly what the commander intended.
The remaining Droid fighters opened fire upon the ship, blasting open sections of the hull and without the emergency doors, alarm sirens started going off in the section that Javif found himself as it started to decompress. The Jedi tapped into the power of Force to sprint at an accelerated rate towards the nearest turbo lift. But the decompression managed to catch up with him just as Javif was mere feet away from an open lift. His sprinting started to slow down rapidly as his movement became more restricted, anyone else would have succumb in an instant and would have been pulled onto the void of space, but Javif was a Jedi, with the force on his side.
The young Jedi drew more upon the force to continue pushing himself closer to the turbo lift, he used his arms to crawl and pull himself along the wall until he finally entered the lift and sealed the door behind him. Javif collapsed onto the floor of the lift and had barely took a few deep breaths before he felt another tremor in the force. He felt the spark of life that flickered within C'baoth was suddenly went out. That last attack, something was different ... Joaus C'baoth; Jedi Master, visionary of the Outbound Flight ... was now dead.
In a final attack run upon the Outbound Flight, the droid fighters had unleashed a devastating new weapon; a Radiation Bomb. When it detonated inside the hull of the dreadnaught, it sent out a deadly, unstoppable wave of radiation throughout the interior of the ship.
Reacting quickly, Javif slams his fist against the control console, activating the turbo lift and setting off to any random section of the ship to escape from the impending danger. Unfortunately it didn't take long for him to realise that it was too late and the danger was spreading quickly throughout the entire ship. Through the force, Javif could sense the many of the remaining crew and colonists fear and anguish as their lives were abruptly ended.
Javif needed to stay strong if he was going to survive this. As the turbo lift was reaching its destination, Javif could sense that the dangerous radiation was still lurking. He knew the dreadnaughts decontamination procedure would automatically come into effect soon, so he needed to wait long enough for that to happen. The young Knight dropped into meditative position and focused on using the force to shield the turbo lift from the radiation.
The turbo lift came to a sudden halt, and Javif quickly used the force to manipulate the controls to keep the doors closed. Over a period of excruciating minutes, Javif struggled to maintain his protection. Though he had practiced this protection technique before, he never encounter this high level of radiation. Slowly growing weaker by the moment, Javif delve deeper into the force to prolong his efforts for as long as possible. Suddenly he could sense the radiation growing fainter, the automated systems were starting to kick in. Before long he could feel the radiation reaching a safer level and released his grip on the force and nearly collapsed of exhaustion.
After several deep breaths, the doors of the turbo lift automatically opened and the sight he saw before him will stay with him until the end of his days.
"Bye the Force!" Javif exaspsed in horror.
A/N: So there we go, first chapter done. Please Comment and Review, it really helps to hear your opinions, thoughts and recommendations and I love reading them. Also, I haven't abandoned my other work, this is just an idea that's been floating around my head for a while now.