It was finally time for Cassandra Victus and Malus to begin their covert siege over the planet of Ambria. Malus had procured a necklace that he had enchanted to give him the appearance of a Symeong, but he would not wear it yet. Today was not the day for espionage, rather, it was a day to instigate a relationship with the leading mining guild that essentially led the system entirely. It was a simple meeting that Malus had arranged with the CEO and her council members. Her name was Mythra Leos, a Twi'lek that was probably as good a business woman as Cassandra.
Malus was not worried, however. If Mythra proved to be troublesome, then the duo could decipher a way to get rid of her and her council. For now, the plan was simple. Malus and Cassandra would try and discuss a way to rid the Hssiss that have been causing recent problems in one of the mining facilities. They were the result of several missing workers and had even caused a collapse a few weeks ago. The first step to earning the people's trust was going to be getting rid of the dragons.
The best part was that neither Malus nor Cassandra had anything on them that tied them to the Sith. Not even the shuttle Cassandra flew was registered under an Imperial chain code. As far as Mythra was concerned, they were business partners as well as simple mercenaries. Malus had even purchased his own blaster pistol with some other basic weaponry so he could look the part.
Cassandra and Malus had made their preparations on Moraband, and it was now time for them to begin acting. Ambria had many good resources that could be claimed on the world and the historically dark-sided world needed some re-education. This mission wasn't just for a reconquista, however, it was for the Inquisitor's own data and notetaking, something she'd always be tasked to do such.
Their first step was to deal with business and economics, as per usual. These people such as Mythra should be easily swayed, but if they are not there can be some more aggressive acts done to convince them of their wrongdoing. They would meet as their own businesspeople, acting as sort of messiahs that will rid the world of all the problems they need. A easy coverup until they reveal their Sith background.
Once Cassandra and Malus arrived, Malus had his disguise ready, and Cassandra was dressed less armored and more formal than usual. She would exit the ship first, nodding for Malus to follow once he was ready. "This should be easy.. We either kill beasts, or we kill idiots, then beasts..."
Malus followed Cassandra out of the ship to greet Mythra and a few of her councilmen. They, like Cassandra, had dressed in formally appropriate clothing, and as Malus intended, he was the only who stood out along with the guards. The little green alien gave a small towards the soon to be elected leader of this planet. If Cassandra and Malus could not find a way to convince Mythra proved to be less compliant than what was preferred, they would have to proceed on a more violent matter.
"Greetings, Miss Victus and Mister Malus." Mythra gave the two a quick bow of her head before leading them inside the Ambrian Mining Corp headquarters, which was built into the side of a mountain. "I am glad you two are willing to assist in getting rid of our dragon problem. Work has slowed because no one is willing to go down into the main shaft." Malus had to hobble a little bit faster in order to keep up. "Yes...Yes, for the right price, of course. Assuming we get paid for our endeavors?" The two Sith each had a part to play, Malus was the aspiring bodyguard, Cassandra was the aspiring secretary. Through these roles they would be able to slowly gain more and more control over the planet until it was finally theirs.
"Yes, of course. You will be rewarded for your efforts if you are successful." Mythra smiled graciously towards the two before entering a meeting room with multiple seats. After everyone took their seat, Malus next to Cassandra, and a holoprojector appeared over the table. It showed the schematics for a mining facility, most likely the one Malus and Cassandra were to be sent to. "This is where we believe a band of Hssiss have made their nests. The job is simple. Destroy the nests, kill the Kssiss, and find any survivng employees that might be trapped down their." Malus liked this woman. Quick and to the point. "But, I heard that one of you had a few matters to discuss concerning planetary security?" Malus nudged Cassandra, for it was her turn to work her magic.
Cassandra would lead Malus past the guards, who would let them through due to the scheduled meeting. Once they were at the entrance, Mythra would greet them and Cassie would nod with respect as she’d lead them to their operations room. She stood taller than the aspiring leader, yet she showed no signs of ulterior or sinister motives. She tried to show a completely relaxed and diplomatic state compared to her usually foreboding presence.
Malus would begin the conversation simply, but soon enough it was her turn to take over as planned. Either way, Cassandra planned a silent persuasion and takeover of this planet, whether they saw their motives or not it did not matter. Whatever produced the best results for the Sith.
“My question is how did these creatures get into your quarries in the first place? You will most certainly need increased security.. yes… I can most certainly help increase the effectiveness of your security personnel and show them how to properly defend and station themselves so there wouldn’t be any additional hires. You wouldn’t want to spend more money that you might run out of for homeland security while dealing with economic affairs, do you?” she said with her musing voice. Cassandra spoke fluidly, trying to bring some implication for if they didn’t listen. “Perhaps if we get rid of this problem… and we use this as a means for you to ascend to power, you will be able to govern this world confidently… Of course I know how I could assist you with swaying the people further and maintaining this support..”
"They are large creatures with a large appetite, I'm afraid. But you do speak true, Miss Victus. If we simply had more defensive measures- more resources -we would be able to fight back against these predators with ease." Mythra explained, and a few of the councilmen nodded their heads in agreement. One of them, a Rodian, spoke up, "Forgive me for intruding, but how would you be able to support our planet's defenses? We hired you because you were a relatively cheaper option that we could afford. What connections do either of you hold that can support our planet? Economically, we should be alright, but if our mining facilities continue to be flushed out due to the flora and fauna, then we will see a stall."
"Considered joining the New Republic, have you not?" Malus inquired simply. It was his turn to talk business, finally. "Or the ISC, hrrmmm? Great strength, they both have, yes...But stronger, the Empire is." This got a bit of an arousal out of the councilmen. "You think we should join those terrorists?! After what they-" The Rodian was cut off by Mythra's stern gaze. "We have thought about leaving the Free World's Alliance, given it's current circumstances, but we had not even thought to bring up the Sith. Why do you bring this up?" Malus's grime face was all just a deceptive ploy.
"Survivor, I am. Great survivor...Many years, have I lived. Many wars, have I watched. Nothing like this, have I seen, yes, nothing." The Rodian's temper seemed to quiet as he intently paid attention to Malus. "Like the Sith, I do not, yes. But stable, their Empire is, hrm? An economic power house, they have become." The council began to murmur, discussing either Malus's good points or that fact that he was a crazy old fart. Malus loved the Sith Empire and what it stood for, but again, he needed to play his part. "Yes, Malus, we are aware of their current state, but we would neighbor multiple of the Alliance's, Republic's, and Consortium's biggest systems. Joining the Sith would put a much larger target on our back than we would like."
Now, Malus had planted the seeds of an idea that would soon sprout into a great tree. The thought of joining the Sith was no longer a heinous act among the council members, but now, simply not a strategic one. "Do you have connections with the Sith?" The Rodian asked in a much calmer manner than before. "Worked for them, I have. Simple bounties, hrm?" The Rodian gave a small nod. "If not the Sith, join the Republic, you should. Expanding, they are, with a promising leader, yes?" It would also be the New Republic where Malus and Cassandra would be able to operate the most efficiently.
"I agree. Many have flocked to the ISC, but we are not an Outer Rim territory. I also have a liking to the new Chancellor, and would be more than okay, along with my council, if we were to join him." Mythra smiled warmly at the two. Malus could sense everyone in the room's calm minds. A surprising turn of events considering the controversial topic they had brought up. "Miss Victus, what connections do you have that could further our security here on Ambria?"
Cassandra frowned at this Rodian’s objections. Those creatures always disgusted her and tended to get in her way. If he continued to object and try to persuade the leader against the Sith then she’d need to go to more aggressive tactics.
“Think about it. The FWA is extremely new and unstable compared to the rest of the galactic powers. They seem to be aggressive on expanding their own ideals. The Empire however, they want to just maintain order within the galaxy. Our own aggressions is to stop worse aggressors. The Republic will collapse itself under the boding of politics eventually, it always happens, but the Empire? Only the most stable and strong are able to climb to the top. If you’re strong enough, you too can be in the upper echelons..” she said, making sure to emphasize her ability to climb. She knew Mythra had power hungry motives so Cassandra wanted to take advantage of that.
“First off, you need to have your soldiers trained more efficiently and better. Get them to know the biology and creatures that are the main hostilities on the planet. The Empire can surely back you on protection and training, as in most cases our Empire’s walls is impenetrable except against raving lunatics on the inside..Your leadership style already is extremely favored by imperial citizens… But knowledge is power and your people need more knowledge on how to defend against said creatures so then when they do become problems… they can solve them easily…”
Malus appreciated Cassandra's willingness to convert this planet over to the Sith, but this was not the way. Mythra and the councilmen began speaking with one another again in hushed tones. Malus could sense the distraught they all had about the reoccurring theme of Ambria joining the Sith. If they caused too much tensity, then this whole operation was going to be a fat bust. Malus hadn't even slain a Hssiss yet! Cassandra was bold, and perhaps too bold, but Malus hoped Mythra would be understanding. Not everyone was a power hungry scum bag. Some just wanted their loved ones to have a better life.
"As Miss Leos already mentioned," Began the Rodian from before. "Even if we were to join the Sith, we would surely be making enemies around every corner. We nearly border Onderon, and if you've been watching the Holonews, they haven't been too fond of the Sith as of late. I do not want to lose any mining facilities to rebel terrorist attacks. I want peace." The Rodian's tone was much calmer than it had been before and Malus appreciated the change of tone. However, if he decided to press further on the topic of joining the Sith, Malus was afraid they'd lose potential allies.
"Understand, we do, yes. A discussion for a later time, perhaps." Malus gave the councilmen a simple nod of his head out of respect. This was currently their planet, not the Empire's, so the two Sith would have act as such. "On the contrary, Miss Victus, I believe that the New Republic's change of leadership will bring them more prosperity than their predecessor before. We would also be closer to our allies if we joined the New Republic. The Sith Empire is too far away to send any sort of assistance here on Ambria to change anything drastically." If Cassandra knew better, she would know to pressure Mythra Leos into thinking her idea is the right idea. That was powerful manipulation through politics like this.
"Right, you are, Miss Leos. Many benefits of the Sith Empire, the New Republic can give with ease, hrm?" Malus closed his eyes for a moment. "A great army, they too, also share. Protection, economic growth, and a voice in the galaxy, you would receive, yes." Then, the older alien's glowing orange eyes opened, gazing across the room towards Mythra. Korriban Magick was powerful, and if Malus was carefu enough, he could manipulate the Twi'lek's mind. "Yes, yes, that is precisely why I brought them up. Their location is an added bonus as well. What say you, Cassandra Victus? Before we leave you to get rid of our dragon problem?"
Cassandra was beginning to get frustrated by Malus discussing the Republic. The more he discussed it the more it seemed they'd join them, which would obviously mean a failure in a mission. She began to get frustrated, but she stood her ground.
"Perhaps we do not need to speak in absolutes. We ourselves, as originally planned, assist with providing protection and exterminating the beasts that attempt to call your mines home." she said soothingly, keeping the room as calm and her confidence as shown as possible. She minimized her arrogance and tried to play more of a neutral ground at this point.
"Whichever side you align with will be your choice.." she began, thinking about how Malus could try to passively gaslight them towards what the Sith wanted over going towards the "Light". "If you want to minimize the attacks on your people, not just by civil lifeforms but also from beasts, that is our offer. Everything else we can discuss after the fact so we do not delay anytime here.."
Malus then used the Force to reach into Cassandra's mind- not to plunder her thoughts but to simply communicate via telepathy. Mythra needed to join the New Republic before the Sith came into play and Cassandra needed to understand that. Yes, they were here to convince Ambria to join the Sith, but at the moment, it would prove to be more of a hinderance, strategically speaking.
Apologies, companion. For this to work, the New Republic they should choose. Then, light the kindling, we shall, hrm? The little green alien kept the link open in case Cassandra had anything to respond. She was a valiant Sith- true to the Empire and her Empress -but many of the Sith had to learn restraint to temper their magnificent vigor. "Thank you, Miss Victus. We will no longer deter you from you reason to be here. While you are away, my council and I will discuss where our allegiance will change or if it will change at all." Mythra dipped her head to Cassandra before allowing her guards to escort the two out.
"Here we are..." Muttered the guard that had led the two to the mining facility. It was dreadfully quiet and Malus felt like there were eyes on him coming from everywhere. The Dark Side of the Force was so potent here. Malus loved it. Cassandra would feel it, too. The draw of the darkness coming from the shaft that laid in front of them as if something was beckoning them forward. "Proceed, we shall." Malus waved off the guard which happily left the area.
"Remember, keep one alive, we must. An egg perhaps, hrm?" The smaller Sith inquired.
The idea of joining the New Republic over the Empire baffled her. If they let the world align with them then it’d be more of a hassle to get them out of it at that point.
They seem too stubborn on their own ideas. Surely if you let them go to the Republic, then we will have to deal with more trouble getting them out. I won’t prod on them further because we’ll end up having conflicting interests if I try to speak to them more… she thought, making sure the message was known to Malus. If this failed and the Republic would send their men to capture the planet, she’d have some serious discussion on loyalty and the failure of the plan.. She smiled slightly as Mythra thanked them for their contract and then they’d head for the mining facility..
Once they arrived, the incense of dark power implored her feelings, strengthening her desire to take her frustrations out and to give in to passion. The planet was most indeed a dark nexus, now it was time to take advantage of it.
The mere moment the guard and any onlookers that thought they weren’t Sith left, Cassandra’s entire posture and tone changed, the yellow in her eyes would appear as the dark side inhabited her once more, and densely this time. “Harvest these types of creatures. We’ll need a place to raise them for resources later.. I will think of something..” Cassie said as they proceeded to descend the shaft.
Understand your confusion, I do. Larger, my plans have become. Think about it, hrm? Entirely swayed by the two of us, the New Republic could be, yes? Carefully we must tread. To save her people, Mythra Leos craves. Not blatant power.Malus explained while he gazed into the dark mine shaft that awaited to be purged. Malus felt his companion's darkness exuding from her person. Something noticed it- lots of somethings. There was a deep curiosity that followed, both from Malus, and the creatures that were watching them.
Malus hobbled carefully towards the mining facility, he too, began letting his power unleash. His orange eyes turned red, reflecting his several years of indulgence into Korriban's sorcery. Now the little green alien could finally hear them with those long pointy ears of his. They clicked their mandibles, followed by shrieks and loud hisses. Maybe they were communicating. Fascinating. Malus was curious as to what they might be discussing.
Then, as Malus set foot into the shaft, something huge dropped from the ceiling where it had been clinging onto. It's yellow eyes glowered in the dark- reflecting that same corruption that Cassandra held in hers. Malus readied himself as the beast took four very slow steps forward until it's large maw could be seen in the light, the rest of it's body cast in a shadowy silhouette.
Greetings, exalted ones... Hissed a dark voice in the minds of both Cassandra and Malus.
Your plans? she thought to herself. Cassandra did not like this sense of individuality Malus had. Surely the Republic wouldn't be persuaded by one planet alone? She then spoke directly to Malus: Your ambitions are clear, yet one planet could not persuade the entire Republic, or the Senate. How would one Governor install themselves into power from what the Core Worlds would consider an insignificant planet? Perhaps we need to try for more significant planets before we get ourselves into Core politics...
That did not matter now, however, as they now encountered their first enemy. The creatures contacting her and Malus surprised her, she expected a full aggression given from what the political figures said, but this changed her plans to a more diplomatic side. Cassie's eyes would shimmer a more bold yellow as she spoke to them in the telepathic link.
Beings of this mine. I stand my ground. The Dark emits and saturates between us here. What brings you to this mine for your home? What is your motivations?
Cassandra's concern was the reason why Malus wanted to implore a rule of duality. Without his fellow Sith companion, Malus's ambitions would get the best of him. Tentatively placing a hand on his forehead as he began to think. Maybe there was still a way to manipulate Mythra as she had found the two to be allies. That misplaced trust would make using the Force to bend her mind all the easier.
Forgive me, Cassandra. My ambitions, unchecked they have been. With that, Malus returned his focus to the beast before them. One step at a time. That was how they were going to take the planet. The Hssiss shifted it's gaze from Malus to Cassandra after she attempted to communicate with the beast. These dragons were not sentient- their minds were still primitive. If it weren't for the Dark Side's influence, they would just be another giant lizard in the galaxy.
Our planet. Our rule. A different voice slithered into their minds. More of these beasts were appearing from large crevasses and crooks in the facility. All were smaller, however, compared to the giant one standing at the mouth of the shaft. The Lake! They hide the Lake... Another shrill and devious voice echoed. "The lake you speak of...Sith spirits, contained within they are, hrm?" Malus asked, turning to look at the huge group that now surrounded them. Yes. Our origin. Our birth. Our right! The largest one snarled, taking two more steps out of the shaft.
"Take it back, we shall." Malus promised. "Take this planet, we will, yes." This sparked curiosity in the pack of about twenty or so Hssiss. The dragons all hissed and chirped with one another in a language no one but them could understand. Through slaughter? Through the Dark Side? The biggest Hssiss inquired. "If it comes to it. Our plans, bigger than this single planet, they are. Carefully, we must tread." This answer did not appease the giant lizards. Some of them bristled and hissed.
Not thing is bigger than the Dark Side. Now the Elder Hssiss was out side of it's hole, showing off it's dark green scales that glistened in the sunlight. It was absolutely massive compared to the small green Sith. "Right, you are, yes? Conquer the galaxy, you can, if you can sate your hunger. Rage is powerful, but cunning makes it sharper, hrm?" Malus would not be surprised if these beasts did not give into reason. They were the pure representation of the Dark Side, and if the legends were true, they would only heed to the first and ancient laws of the Dark Side. If the strong ruled the weak, Cassandra and Malus would have to be strong.
"Ready yourself. Messy, this will be..." Malus uttered to Cassandra, preparing to draw his lightsaber as the Elder Hssiss drew closer and closer. The smaller ones all seemed to back off and watch with anticipation. Of course! This was the tradition of Arauk'kesh! Whether these lizards knew it or not, they truly were the epitome of what a Sith truly was. A servant to the Dark Side- not an Empress. A worshiper of the Dark Side- not an ideal. These dragons reminded Malus of the Ren, who had similar philosophies.
Apology Accepted. Ambition is best when it is checked and mediated.. she thought as the dark creatures around them would begin speaking to them through the power of the Dark Side. It became clear that the Dark was separate than the beasts themselves.. The spirit of it was just using the vessel of these beasts as omens and fear mongers. It didn't scare Cassandra whatsoever, only pertaining to her curiosity and her desire to overcome this obstacle; exploiting it for her own methods.
"The Dark Side will expand its nexus through us... We plan to regain the fiery of the Sith and its Darkness in strength and influence. Sharpening the blade of malice creates a focus.. And when darkness is focused it is at its most powerful.." she said. The Force would saturate around her more as Darkness became one with her. Her yellow eyes would become focused and sharp as her lightsaber would shake on her holster. The desire for conquest and the flames of might would rise even higher as she would prepare for battle. Sparks of Force Lightning would begin to run on her fingertips: Her specialization as a Sorceress, ready to enhance her abilities and terrorize anyone who opposed her and her allies.
Cassandra's words didn't seem to make it to the beast's frenzied minds. Instead, it threw itself at the larger of the two Sith with it's two clawed fingers, slashing rapidly while it snarled and hissed. The other Hssiss all chittered and chirped with anticipation, awaiting the results of the apparent slaughter. Malus, was not so keen on watching, however, and drew his lightsaber, using the Force to leap onto the back of the beast.
Malus drove his saber into it's shoulder, the Hssiss cried out in pain, but Malus couldn't be thrown off. Instead, the little green alien hurled a concussive blast into the Hssiss's head. This would create an opening for Cassandra to attack it with her own counters. These beasts were both primitive in the mind, and in the ways of the Dark Side. In order to prove their strength, the two Sith would need to defeat this Elder Hssiss to sway the minds of the others. They only understood one thing; the Strong rule the Weak.
The Dark would once again wrap around the Inquisitor, this time leading to her igniting her saber, the lightning of the force enveloping her blade as she would dive straight for a creature, aiding Malus with her attacks. They'd need to work together indeed to slaughter said beast. She would take advantage of using Form VII, attacking extremely aggressively and ruthlessly. The Darkness would empower her and make her even more ruthless. Malus would've certainly never seen Cassandra this brutal before, it was like she embraced power and intent; extreme determination.
The Rule of the Strong was correct in this case. Cassie would proceed with igniting her right hand with a slings of lightning, and shooting it straight at the head of the Elder Hssiss, intending to subdue it completely for a more pathetic defeat, trying to humiliate and prove its inferiority compared to the Sith.