Tython Interlude

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away... The Republic and the Empire maintain a fragile truce, but the threat of open war hangs heavy as both sides quietly vie for power and domination. In the midst of this volatile mix of factions and schemes, unlikely heroes must fight to preserve all they hold dear.
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Re: Tython Interlude

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The Council

There was a faint sound of rustling robes as Masters stirred in their seats, discomfited by what they had heard.

"Remind us why you are absent, Master Jesk? You must be near Tython..." Master Mona Pell mused, but her quiet statement was overpowered by several other competing voices.

"...Scandalous to accuse..."

"Impossible!"

"A Master?"

"But it wouldn't be the first time that..."

Master Furri raised a hand for quiet. When the other voices had subsided, Furri went on, "Torture is a serious accusation to make, Jedi Lin. Especially against a Master. Have you any proof of this other than an Imperial spy's word?"

"She has none!" Jesk insisted, finally speaking up to answer this charge against him. "Tell me, Jedi Lin - did you see bruises on the Imperial? Did you see blood? If I questioned her harshly, if I offended her sensibilities, it was for the good of the Republic. How long will it take you to understand this? The victory of the Republic is the survival of the Jedi Order! If the Empire wins, you think any of us will survive? That the Jedi religion - that our way of life - will survive? Our worlds will be crushed under the Imperial boot. Our people will be enslaved. The Jedi will be wiped out... or worse, turned to the ways of the Sith! Is that the future you want? This is why we must win the war..."

Mona was regarding the hologram of Jesk with placid calm as he went on this tirade, but she did raise an eyebrow. "It was my understanding that we are not currently at war, Master Jesk. That war is, in fact, exactly what we are trying to prevent."

"No everyone," Jesk replied darkly. "Certainly not Jedi Lin, who apparently never met a Sith plan she did not approve of and support. This Jedi stood by and watched a Sith murder a Hutt in cold blood on a neutral world, and did nothing to answer the crime."

Mona's eyebrow arched even higher. "Master Averrod-Iresso informed us of that situation already, Master Jesk. My understanding is the Hutt was a slaver, and his death allowed the rescue of two innocent people..."

"Slaves!" Jesk burst out. "Two slaves. They don't matter. Stop looking at me like that. When have the Jedi ever interfered with slavery unless there was some direct benefit for the Order? The Jedi understand that we hold loftier ideals. We will save all the slaves when we win the war. In the meantime, losing the balancing power of any of the Hutts is a blow. Jedi Lin seems determined to sabotage the Republic cause at any turn!"

And, by this point, Teizi had surely noticed that Jesk was determined to change the subject at every turn.
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Quaxo9
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Re: Tython Interlude

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Teizi Lin

She had made to confirm her claim - and inso doing, agree with Master Furri that she had no proof but the word of an Imperial and perhaps that of some Republic soldiers. Though, she doubted the latter would admit as much if it meant coming to the aid of the former in any way. She was spared that explanation by Master Jesk himself, though she admittedly had some difficulty keeping up with the proceedings shortly after the first segue.

Perhaps that was the point.

"I have no proof of the torture other than that word of mouth that I first stated. Not all torture leaves a bruise. I wonder, though, how Master Jesk can speak of enslavement as something to be avoided at all costs - and yet say that the life of a slave has no value. I believe that the Force resides in all creatures, all peoples, whether or not their freedom is in question. I do not know why we seem to disagree on this point, Master Jesk."
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Re: Tython Interlude

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The Council

"We are not here to debate the moral implications of Imperial slavery," Master Furri said disapprovingly - though if one looked closely, his disapproval was perhaps directed slightly more toward Jesk than Teizi. "I think we should move on from the subject. About the Imperial..."

"I am not on trial!" Jesk interjected. "I am not the one who consorted with Sith on Rishi. And as for this so-called 'torture.' Yes, I interrogated the girl. The information I convinced her to provide saved countless Republic lives."

"Countless?" Master Mona Pell repeated with a raised eyebrow, skeptical.

Jesk ignored her. "But allegations of 'torture' are untrue and slanderous. I did not harm the Imperial spy. Teizi is merely trying to distract this Council from her own crimes."

"Alleged crimes," Master Mona said quietly.

"I beg your pardon..."

Mona waved aside Jesk's objection with a casual hand. "Perhaps you should start from the beginning and tell us exactly what happened on Rishi, Jedi Lin. Everything that happened, if you please."
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Re: Tython Interlude

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Teizi Lin

She took a slow breath, her pinky finger tapped the back of her opposite hand twice before she raised her head and made eye contact with Master Pell. Grand Master Satele. Master Furri. Them first because she felt that in them she had some solidarity. Once the tale began, she was careful to include the rest of the Council. Besides, she had nothing to fear.

"I went to Rishi on the behest of General Var Suthra. A Sith vessel they had under surveillance had gone there and he wanted to me to see if there was any truth to the rumours that an Imperial force was gathering in the outer rim worlds. I lost the specific vessel at space port, but heard that there were Sith planetside and pursued that lead. As it turned out, the Sith in question was a man on a vacation of sorts, caring for his twin sisters. My padawan located our targets and we moved to intercept them. The Sith, Pyrran, and his friends went along with us in hopes of catching up with a Hutt. On our way there, we saw that the structure we were moving towards had caught fire and there were suddenly many civilians fleeing the area. We came face to face with the Hutt and his entourage, and yes, in the interest of preserving life, I removed a guard's weapon before I began seeing to the injured."

This is when things would likely get a little more interesting for some - though Grand Master Satele already knew how her actions played out. She wasn't certain why she left out the fact that Theron Shan was part of the group involved in the killing of the Hutt. It could be either that she didn't want to colour the Grand Master's opinion of the occurrence - or that she would be seen as pandering by the rest of the Council. She took a breath a kept going.

"Once inside the arena, we came upon a former member, Siralai Mahr, her daughter, two Sith apprentices and a Sith operative. All present were non-combative. A Republic citizen who was a friend of the aforementioned had been taken by the Sith I had been tasked to follow. It seemed right to continue my mission and also help rescue one Captain Neva Xolte. This led to the situation on Dromund Kaas already explained to the Council."

Teizi spoke the last sentence as a half-question to Satele, who simply nodded. Of course, the tale wasn't finished. She could imagine how the Council was going to react to the next part - sending her padawan off to Mek-Sha with a Sith operative.

"Oh, there is one more thing to mention about the Dromund Kaas mission - Pyrran rescued the former Grand Marshal Cheketta from a prison there. He is now a free man."

She took a moment to pull together the rest of the story, having just dropped that the Grand Marshal was alive, she wanted to let that sit.

"We returned to Rishi and some news arrived as to the whereabouts of the scientists who had experimented on Pyrran's sisters. What had been done to them was truly horrible. It was wrong. I decided to send my padawan on the mission under the guidance of Master Visper Averrod-Iresso to give him some more experience working with others. While he was away, I remained behind to assist with the children and the young Sith apprentices. They were tortured by their master and Siralai is helping them transition to a life free of oppression. The girl, Reyth, in particular is struggling with a strange condition where the Force intensifies around her, causing localized, short-lived destruction. I do not believe that there is reason for concern regarding this Sith - she is making progress and is under a steady hand."

"Once Padawan Dallyn returned from his mission, we were preparing to follow our next path. That was when Master Jesk landed with a party of Knights in tow. He was overheard making threats of kidnapping children - not just the child he mentioned - and murdering Pyrran. The man who had just rescued two Republic prisoners. Master Jesk confronted the Sith Pyrran, who had not raised his light saber against him despite the terrible things the Master was saying. I defended him. There was a stand off - one of the 'visiting' Jedi was returned to Master Jesk unharmed by Lana Beniko, the Sith agent. Soon after that, Master Jesk was informed that two other knights had been fired upon by Mandalorians. They left the fallen Knight behind - I brought him with me to Tython. And that...is the full story, Council."
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Re: Tython Interlude

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The Council

At a few points during Teizi's story, Jesk seemed poised to interrupt... but the other Masters hastily shushed him, so she was able to finish her tale without interruption. When she had finished, his holographic image was poised to speak again - but Mona Pell cut him off.

"Frankly, you are far from unbiased in this matter, Master Jesk," Mona said curtly. "By attempting to serve as both witness and judge, you reveal how your emotions have clouded your mind. We will speak later, privately, I think. In the meantime, I would ask you to refrain from further interference."

Jesk was clearly angry, but for once he kept his mouth shut.

"We are satisfied with your story, Jedi Lin," Master Furri said. "It seems that in all ways, you have acted in keeping with the code of the Jedi. You have brought yourself honor." After a brief pause to allow the statement to stand, he added, "But there are still many loose ends we will need to deal with. There are a number of young Sith who will need to be tended to, and I'm not sure their current caretakers..."

At that point, it seemed Jesk could no longer help himself. "That's putting it mildly. A disgraced former Jedi who left the Order due to an inappropriate carnal relationship with an Imperial, and a Sith-turned-Jedi whose mind was constructed by your experimentation and who could at any moment..."

"Master Jesk!" Master Pell interjected. "That is more than enough..."

Furri was starting to look annoyed again. "This Council has been more than satisfied that Master Averrod-Iresso--"

Mona Pell cut him off with a shake of her head; despite Furri's good intentions, his attempt to defend Visper had revealed that she was exactly the person in question.

Master Furri looked a bit embarrassed, but it passed quickly, and he went on, "As well as the matter of Cheketta - I imagine the Republic commanders will have some questions for him. But I am most concerned about this Sith Lord. Pyrran, you said? I believe it is in our best interests to question him as well."

"Yes, it would be best," Mona Pell agreed.
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Re: Tython Interlude

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Teizi Lin

She was spared having to inform the Council of her opinion was that Sith children should be allowed to continue to be Sith children instead of forcing them to conform to the ways of the Jedi against their will by a very interesting revelation. That she managed not to react was a credit to her training, though, as she thought on it, the disturbing bit wasn't that Visper had been a Sith. No, the disturbing part was that she was experimented on. Like her husband had been. Like those children...

Of course, she had made her own blunder - in an effort to clear Pyrran's name of murder, she had revealed that a prominent former commander was still alive. Naturally, they'd want him back for 'questioning', even after they'd thrown him to the dogs. Teizi still felt as though it had been the right move, and felt vindicated in doing so as the Council seemed to be considering Pyrran as a credible witness. She couldn't imagine that the Jedi Council frequently asked Sith for their opinion on Jedi matters.

"I can initiate a holocall with him, if the Council agrees."

She pulled out her holo with the assumption that either they would agree a holocall would suffice, or that she could argue that if her accuser didn't have to be there in person, neither should her witness.
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Re: Tython Interlude

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The Council

The hologram of Jesk shook his head vehemently. "That is absolutely out of the question!" he insisted.

Mona raised an eyebrow. "Why is that? It seems preferable to adjourning the session while we wait for him to travel here from Rishi - in the unlikely event he even agreed to do so, since we have no way to force a Sith on a neutral world to come here in the first place - and if he's really so terribly dangerous, I can't imagine why we would willingly bring him onto Tython soil."

Jesk looked like he was about to explode. "He will use the distance as a shield, to keep you from sensing his Dark Side corruption..."

For a moment, the entire rest of the Council stared at him.

"Oh?" Mona asked quietly. "Is that something you think a person would do? Please elaborate on that statement, Master Jesk."

Jesk folded his arms and stared away from the holo recorder. It wasn't clear what he was looking at, but it certainly wasn't his fellow Council members. "A waste of time," he said tersely. "I withdraw my objection, if the will of the Council is so... fixed upon this course."

Furri motioned for Teizi to initiate the call as she had offered.

A moment later, Pyrran flickered into view. "Teizi, are you alright?" he asked, worry evident in his voice. "What happened? Why did the Council...?"

Belatedly, he noticed they were not alone. A look of confusion crossed his face - a momentary fear that he had been betrayed - but it passed quickly. When he spoke again, his voice was different - layered with menace, command, and a hint of sarcasm. A Sith Lord voice. "What can I do for this esteemed Council?" Pyrran asked.
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Re: Tython Interlude

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Teizi Lin

"Lord Pyrran." she began, tentatively. "The Council wanted to ask you for your testimony. On my behalf."

The change in his voice and demeanour hadn't been lost on her. It was the same change that had occurred when they'd gone to Dromund Kaas. The same act for Sith and Jedi alike. Teizi suddenly felt very fortunate. That she'd met the real Pyrran. That she knew he was acting because she'd seen who he was. The Council...would probably never see him.

"They are aware of what occurred on Dromund Kaas, they are more interested in what happened on Rishi. If you would be so kind as to answer their questions, I would appreciate it."
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