One Sith, Two Sith

Rasputin

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Cassus raised an eyebrow. "You act as if you know me. You don't."

He would stand in front of them now, appearing ever so calm. "I never said I was dangerous. But words of advice; think before you speak. You'll find many Sith can be rather...easily angered individuals. Now, let's stop bickering for a moment and talk civilized. I will not repeat my words, so it would be advisable to listen. I have intentions on recovering some hidden holorecords left by the Sith Empire during the Battle of Korriban about five thousand years ago. The problem is that they're in the Tomb of Naga Sadow--and traveling alone would be stupid. However, if I have a group, we can get the records and take them to the Sith Inquisitors. We will be rewarded with prestige. With prestige comes respect, with respect comes influence, and with influence comes power. The question is, are you willing?"
 
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Elijah Brockway

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"I doubt that there's much of anything useful left in the old tomb," Jaron replied, and after a moment he shrugged. "But it would still be a useful training opportunity. The traps there are still active, after all, and various animals have taken up residence over the years. Regardless of whether or not we find anything, just getting through it alone would be an achievement in and of itself. I may as well go along with you."
 

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Zabić couldn't believe it. Jaron seems just too trusting in her opinion. He would really go to the tombs with a stranger? Not even know anything about what this guy is capable of? She asked her Master about such things when he took her there for training. He is a top notch warrior too, and he refused to step foot past the sentinels. Out of all those she knew today, she trusted her Master's guidance the most. "I most certainly am not," she declared, also remembering his statement that there is nothing left anywhere. Anyone who had a different opinion was lied to or making up stories! It couldn't be that there was just a superstition told about the place to keep everyone away; right?

She looked at Jaron, worried about his reply that he would go. 'You know nothing about him?' she spoke Telepathically. It is true she thought Cassus could be insane.

She looked at Cassus and said, "If I see you before I see him again, my face will be the last that you see."
 

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"My dear, I can defend myself," Jaron replied to Zabić, still smiling. "Don't worry. After all, it is as I said earlier - this could be a rather useful practice." The acolyte stepped back, slightly, from the triangle that had been formed of the three.

"However, I do need to grab that of which I spoke earlier before I may go."
 

Rasputin

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Cassus did not appear intimidated by Zabic's threats. And why should he? Threats such as that were to be expected among the Sith. However, there was a faint line between carefulness and paranoia. Without a response to Zabic, he turned to Jaron.

"Gather what is needed," he said, "Do it quickly. We have no time to waste."

Without another word, Cassus walked down the halls and exited the Academy. As he walked down the steps of the Academy into the narrow pathways to the Valley of the Dark Lords, he began to ponder on Jaron and Zabic. He, by no means, held any trust for Jaron. Why should he? They just met. And yet here he was, trusting a man he barely knew with his life. Of course, it wasn't the stupidest thing ever done. He began to ponder on a plan as he entered the valley, awaiting Jaron's arrival.
 

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Jaron nodded, quickly executing a crisp about-face - however, before he left, he laid a hand on Zabić's arm, bringing her attention back to him. While he retained his smile, his eyes now appeared shrewd and calculating - and dangerous.

"Like I said, don't worry about me. We'll be too busy trying to defend ourselves from what lies in the tomb itself to attack each other, and even if a duel does occur, I have a few surprises of my own...Though your concern is noted, and comforting." His quiet speech finished, Jaron started along towards the archives. He quickly grabbed the record he wanted - a detail of the last few years of Naga Sadow's life, spent on Yavin IV - before depositing that in his room. He then grabbed a small satchel, with some food and a glowrod, as he knew one would be necessary; after a moment taken to oil his blade and make sure his lightsaber was properly hidden, he moved off, heading down to the Valley of the Dark Lords himself.

Finding Cassus having entered a few minutes before, the Keshiri strode up to his fellow acolyte.

"Please, Cassus," he said, before gesturing towards the tomb they were going to. "Lead the way."
 

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Cassus nodded to the Keshiri. He would approach the tomb, gazing at it for a few moments. Even here, you could practically smell the Dark Side swelling inside there. You could faintly feel the voices trying to creep through your skull, into your mind. The power was weak here, but in the tomb, especially in the innermost chambers, even the greatest Sith could be driven mad. Cassus would lead Jaron into the tomb, taking in the scene. The tomb grew darker as they entered the the chamber. It was dimly-lit, almost completely dark. You could see, but just barely.

"This way," Cassus stated.

He would continue along in a corridor on the left. The hall was clearly ancient. In fact, it looked like it was about ready to collapse in on itself. The corridor would go downward below the ground and open up into a cave. The cave was clearly old, likely a natural structure that was here long before the tomb was constructed. Cassus would look around, searching for a way to go. However, this left him unprepared for the imminent attack. A large, wild, and clearly hungry beast would emerge from the shadows. It would leap at Cassus. The acolyte would turn to see it, quickly pulling out his lightsaber hilt. However, he wasn't quickly enough. The beast landed right on him, causing him to drop his saber and collapse. Quickly he would act, struggling to keep the wild animal from trying to maul him.
 

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Jaron frowned at the beast that just jumped out at them. Tuk'ata, and a large one at that. Jaron extended a hand, drawing Cassus's lightsaber to him - it wouldn't do good to have it lost in this scuffle - before drawing his blade. A single slash at the Tuk'ata's back diverted its attention from Cassus to him, and once that occurred, it quickly found the blade of a lightsaber stuck into its throat.

The acolyte resisted the urge to shudder at the look in the beast's eyes; it was mad, malevolent...everything that was said to encompass the feelings of any spirits within the tombs. He dragged the blade of Cassus's saber up, bisecting the Tuk'ata's head, before turning off the blade, as the creature's body fell to the floor.

"Keep your saber at the ready," Jaron growled, tossing the hilt back to Cassus. "Where there's one of those things, there's going to be five more lying in wait not particularly far away." Looking around warily, the Keshiri activated his vibrosword, looking carefully about for the rest of the pack that would no doubt be near.
 

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Cassus caught the blade, pulling himself up off the ground. He was rather annoyed with himself for allowing himself to be defeated so easily. He would look down on the dead animal. Definitely a Tuk'ata. They were not beasts to be trifled with, especially when hungry. It was truly a symbol of the Sith. As he looked at the beast, he was reminded of himself. They both held an urge for survival. However, this certainly was not enough for Cassus to take pity on it. After all, the Sith believed only the strong were to survive. The weak, on the other hand, died, forgotten.

As he continued the search, the hooded acolyte frowned. He heard footsteps and panting from behind, no doubt that of an animal. Igniting his blood red blade, he turned to see two Tuk'ata One was running toward him, the other to Jaron. With relative ease, he slashed his lightsaber at the Tuk'ata in from of it. It would collapse and continue to skid on the floor. Cassus turned to the other beast, raising his unarmed hand at it. The beast would suddenly fly toward the wall a few meters over. It wasn't dead, but clearly injured, most likely a broken leg and ribs.
 

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As Cassus busied himself with the two Tuk'ata, Jaron turned, looking behind the other acolyte, where another Tuk'ata was running up. As it jumped towards them, Jaron lifted his blade, the Tuk'ata sliding onto it. The acolyte then kicked the creature back, off of his blade, before turning to face any others.

After a moment he stepped up, finishing off the one that Cassus had blasted into the wall. Pulling out a cloth, he wiped the blood off of his vibrosword, before sheathing it, and turning back to Cassus.

"By my guess, we shouldn't be dealing with much more of them until we enter deeper into this tomb," he said, frowning. "They normally stay deeper in than this; they're either getting desperate, or something bad is happening in there."
 

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Cassus' energy blade would disappear from sight.

"Indeed," Cassus agreed, "And in that case, we must be extra cautious."

The dark acolyte would continue on, walked over to a large gap in the ground. The only was across was the stone bridge nearby. The bridge was not sturdy, by the looks of it. It looked about ready to collapse, so they needed to be careful. Cassus would lead, walking on the bridge slowly. Each step was calculated carefully. If one mistake was made, they would not survive. Finally, after what seemed like forever, he got across. He waited for Jaron to across, and continued on. There were two routes. Either way could lead anywhere.
 

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Jaron crossed the bridge with the same exaggerated caution as Cassus; while perhaps in the time of Darth Revan it may have been safe to cross, now the bridge was so worn down from the multitudes of crossings upon it, let alone any other factors, that one step placed upon the wrong stone could cause the entire bridge to collapse; and it would be hard for them to get back, after that, as the ceiling was too low for them to jump across the gap.

Still, he made it across without issue. He reached into his satchel once fully across, pulling out the glowrod he'd brought with him. There was little light past this point, and while using a glowrod might cause various of the creatures living within the tomb to find and attack them, it was better by far that they attract known dangers to them and see those dangers, than risk running into any unforeseen trap.

"Shall we continue, or do you wish a moment to rest?" Jaron asked Cassus, resisting the urge to continue into the tomb.
 

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"There is no need to rest," he replied, "We must continue onward."

Cassus thought for a moment on where to head. He thought about having them split up, but in this tomb, it wouldn't be a good idea to be alone. He chose to go right, walking forward and expecting Jaron to follow. The tombs were dark and there was no light beyond this point. Because of this, he was rather content that Jaron brought the glowrod. Using a lightsaber would attract unwanted attention. They soon entered a large hall which held statues and artifacts. Suddenly, Cassus would stop and held out his hand in front of Jaron.

"Stop," he commanded, "Do you hear that?"
 

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"I hear various bat-like creatures flying around, I hear the sounds of a young Tuk'ata feeding on a rat it caught, and many other things besides," Jaron replied, though he instantly lapsed into a combat stance, ready to defend himself if anything should come upon them.

"What specifically is it that you hear?"
 

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Cassus had no time to respond. Jaron's question was answered as several cloaked humanoid figures emerged from the shadows. Cassus held out his saber, but didn't ignite it. These figures didn't attack immediately as would be expected from someone insane. Perhaps they were fellow acolytes lost in the tomb? For whatever reason, Cassus didn't let his guard down. He would be stupid not to. Even they were acolytes, the tombs were always a place where "accidents" could occur. Accidents that eliminated competition.

"The Master was correct," said one of the hooded figures, a Twi'lek, "The disciples have arrived."
 

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"I wasn't expecting to find any others deep in here," the Keshiri said, his blade out of its sheathe, resting in a low guard. "Nor was I expecting to be expected, myself. Care to give us your names, strangers?"
 

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The cloaked figures would look to each other, as if thinking of how to explain this. They looked utterly emotionless, as if the were droids. The Twi'lek would step forward again, as if he was the voice of the group. He would step carefully, as if trying not to provoke the acolytes.

"We are the disciples of the Master," explained the Twi'lek, "We are the students of the Order."
 

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"Cassus," Jaron growled, shooting a rather significant 'what have you gotten us into' glance at his fellow acolyte, before turning back to the others. He relaxed his grip on his sword, lowering it far below where it might possibly be easily used, before he began to speak.

"Honored disciples," the Keshiri began, straightening his posture somewhat, "My companion and I must take a moment to consult with each other as to certain matters regarding our meeting you. I trust this is acceptable?"
 

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The Twi'lek would offer a nod, and as would the other disciples. Cassus would approach Jaron with a puzzled expression, as if to ask 'what is it'. He would conceal the hilt in his sleeve. There was no need to provoke the cloaked figures. They clearly weren't going to fight; at least that was what Cassus was hoping for.

"This is very strange," whispered the acolyte, "They are clearly insane."
 

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"Spend too long with the spirits of the ancients, and you'll find yourself corrupted by them," Jaron said, nodding his head in agreement with Cassus's statement. He resisted the urge to look back towards the others back there, sheathing his vibrosword. It was obvious that, now, he didn't need it.

"However, I cannot see any way out of this that doesn't involve half-senseless murder, which I am not fond of; and that's everything that doesn't involve us going along with them, for the time being." The Keshiri sighed, shaking his head with a very minute movement.

"Perhaps we should do that, for now," he suggested. "We might learn something useful...for either ourselves or the masters. And, as I said, I don't particularly want to kill them, or try to run out of the tomb; I doubt either option would work out well for us."
 
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