Chapter 66 (Vers. 1.1 12/Oct/13)
Note: Thanks again to Inachis and Hawklan to make this chapter more readable.
“Noh Noss, I feel my wife has done something that will be a pain in my ass soon,” Xander said.
The two were hiding behind a pillar as they sneaked inside using a combination of Force Stealth, Force Cloak and Shadow Trick. The shadow walk trick didn’t make you invisible, just more difficult to see, even for computers and sensors, and it was less tiresome than using Force Cloak.
Slowly they came up against a door. Xander pulled up his lock pick and code breaker as he tried to open it. “A hard code… Well…,” he said while he looked at the time. Suddenly the landing platforms were shaking from the explosion. “Time to use the UCT or the Universal Cutting Tool and walk inside,” he said with a smile.
“Interesting… I never have seen a UCT,” Noh Noss said, curious.
Xander just smiled under the helmet. “I’m sure you have, once or twice, my friend,” he said as he activated his UCT. With a snap hiss the glow of his lightsaber illuminated him for a second as he sliced the door in half. “UCT… never leave home without it,” he said, grining. “Keep yourself out of sight. If anybody except Lumiya enters, take him out. I’m going to make sure Lumiya comes out to play.”
Xander walked out onto the floor. In the centre he could see a huge floating ball, two, no three hundred meters in diameter. Strange cables and connecting wires hung from the object.
A dreaded feeling of the dark side almost dripped from the strange machine. It spoke with a disrespectful voice, trying to affect his mind. “Come to me Jedi. Come and be changed.”
Xander snorted. “Like no way. So you are the Sith Forge. How is that working for you? Has the Bitch irritated you yet?”
The forge just hung in the air with its cables swinging under it. Now he could see open lids and corridors inside of it. Xander walked closer. “Let`s make this interesting,” he said and jumped inside, holding both blades in his hand.
The machine activated immediately and a tentacle came rushing out from the wall, trying to capture him.
“Not nice,” Xander yelled with a smile. “Call your Sith Bitch,” he demanded in a not so friendly manner.
The machine was silent.
Xander waved his lightsaber around, creating deep cuts inside the arcane machine.
“Don’t do that,” the forge said.
“Dave... Dave what are you doing? Dave…,” Xander said, talking like Hall-2000 as he cut the machine again.
“I will defend myself,” it said, activating its more aggressive defenses. Waves of despair, pain and a dark shock raged down on Xander, trying to crush him.
Xander stumbled backwards from the shock and the pain. Before he had the chance to recover the tentacles had grabbed him and thrown him inside an operating room.
Focusing the power of the force he enter the dark side of the force. Rage and force lightning danced around both his hands as he send lightning bolts inside the tentacles, frying them. As he got free he landed like a cat on a big operation table.
In front of him was the pith of hell itself, a forge… not for metal but for living things. Dark fire raged inside of it. Cold heat, destruction and mutation was the damage it caused.
Freed he let it taste force lightning.
Calming himself he said, “I said call the dark bitch.”
“Dark Jedi…,” the machine began but then stooped.
Xander blinked… Dark Jedi? Wait a minute. He pulled himself away from the dark side. The machine, the forge, had tricked him and overwhelmed by its attack on his emotions, he got angry, real angry. “Smart, trying to turn me to the dark side. Your attack overwhelmed my defense, impressive, but now I’m ready.” He calmed himself, raised his mental shield as hard and strong as he could and drew on the power of force light. It started to glow around him, cleansing him and hardened his mind against further attacks. Then he took the offensive and he opened up a burst of emerald light into the engine of the Forge.
The machine screamed a soundless telepathic scream of pain as the Jedi attack burned inside it like a plasma drill. Any force user on the planet could hear its pain and so could Lumiya.
She rushed inside the hangar followed by her darkside devotees and dark side elite.
Noh Noss, hiding outside, swallowed, but they didn’t even bother with him.
Alright, Noh Noss said to himself, I should probably stop them. “I’m so dead,” he mumbled.
Sending a wave of force push the darksiders following the dark lady were pushed to the ground as he walked up, his lightsaber already burning in his right hand. Twelve of them and one of him, sounds like complete suicide. Not that he ever wanted to live forever. That sounded boring, but a humble millennium or two sounded interesting, even if impossible.
In his left hand he held a sonic gun, a homebuilt gun that looked more like the love child of a speaker and a toaster. Still it worked and he could rebuild the toaster.
The moment the first darksider attacked he pulled the trigger and used the weapon, overwhelming his attacker. His ears were bleeding and he didn’t even see Noh Noss’ lightsaber attack which cut his head off.
The second tried to parry, but it was too late, as the blade slashed his backside open. Number three was better. He had already used the force to dampen the pain and parried. Like a drunk, he fell out of the way.
Noh Noss was forced to ignore him as no 4 attacked. A swift dodge with a follow up attack which the dark side user managed to parry. He was rather pleased with himself, he had taken out two. “You should give up dork sider. You’re too stupid to fight and too weak to defend yourself, just run for your life,” he said, using Dun Möch, the technique of insulting you enemy and then take advantage of his anger. “Oh I’m sorry I hurt you and now you’re crying,” he continued taunting them.
“DIE JEDI,” a Darksider screamed and attacked with wild powerful swings.
Noh Noss dodged, lifted his left hand and pulled the trigger. From point blank the sonic gun made the blood inside the target boil and skin started to fall of the darksider as he fell down.
“I thought I saw an idiot, but I did see many Idiots. They are everywhere,” he said, looking at the darksiders.
They were now more cautious. There was a reason he was chosen to join Xander’s academy.
He had great skills in lightsaber combat and except that one time he and Arden were fighting each other, he never lost.
Two of the darksiders were pulling out their own blasters and they attacked him. Now things would get complicated.
Noh Noss might look like a shaved gorilla with glasses, but he had a singing voice like an angel and now he proved he could dance like a butterfly.
If only the sonic stunner didn’t need to cool down or power up between blasts. That was the down side of building one using the wrong materials, though at least it was fun.
The sounds of hoofs suddenly were heard as Greywind came storming inside at full speed. It jumped and ran right past them with Jaina swinging her lightsaber like a lance. The darksiders counterattack was nowhere near to hitting her as she cut and stomped them down.
Jaina jumped down from Greywind and landed beside him. “Where is my husband?” she asked her fellow Jedi.
“Inside the machine,” Noh Noss replied while shooting at another darksider.
She looked up. “Stupid asshole,” she yelled.
To their surprise the head of one darksider exploded.
And a moment later a voice from above clarified why. “Statement: Fight against my master and you fight against me.” HK-47 had joined the fight.
The five darksider adepts who apparently weren’t that smart attacked again.
“I take the rust bucket,” one said and rushed the droid.
The droid put the gun away, lifted something and then threw it at him.
The dark Jedi just sliced with his lightsaber. “Ha idiot…,” he managed to get out before he was almost drowned as the fire extinguisher HK-47 had thrown at him and he had then cut in half suddenly released a concentrated heat absorbing mass that was slowly freezing him and drowning him all at the same time.
The dark Jedi soon looked like a ball of frozen mass that slowly moved, shivering in cold as the person inside drowned and then he lay still.
“Statement: Meatbag attempt to anger me succeed, your death is slow now,” Hk-47 stated as he watched the dark side adept drown in front of him.
Then the real fight started inside the Forge as a master of the light and a mistress of the dark started to fight and prove who the master of the force was.
And the Forge screamed in mental pain, driving Noh Noss, Jaina and the darksiders to their knees.
HK-47 used the situation as he opened fire on the enemy. One by one the last of the adepts were killed. The old assassin droid walked down and seeing a still living darksider, he quickly ended that mistake with a soft crunching sound from the head as it was crushed.
Walking up to Jaina he said, “Query: Master, any more fleshbags I should destroy?”
Jaina groaned, “No thanks HK-47. Good to see you survived. That is Noh Noss a fellow teacher and Jedi. That is HK-47 an old Sith and Jedi hunter droid and I think he is a friend.”
“You sure have strange friends,” Noh replied and then he frowned. “I think Xander told me about him. Hi HK-47,”
“Statement: Greetings meatbag,” HK-47 replied.
Jaina grinned as she said, “Yeah Xander is so going to go fanboy over you HK-47.”
“Query: Can I, in self defense, destroy Meatbag Xander? I dislike fanboys,” HK asked.
“No, you can’t destroy or kill or mutilate Xander,” Jaina said.
“Declaration: Pain and suffering is my lot in existence. I will do as you say master,” HK-47 said.
“Um… why is it calling you master?” Noh Noss asked.
Jaina shrugged. “No idea. If a powerful super smart old droid trained in killing Sith and Jedi Knight suddenly starts to protect you and calls you master, a smart person just agrees without any protest.”
“Agreement: Master understands the reality of the universe. Statement: Personally I am hopeful that an intelligent meatbag is once again in control.” The last was said with an amused and hopeful voice, the first in an ironic tone.
Inside the Alchemy Forge Lumiya realized that the three cursed Jedi had chosen the fighting place with care. Her light whip was at a disadvantage inside the corridors and strange rooms of the Forge. Her light whip needed big areas for her to swing it around effectively and the Jedi himself was a master of two blade fighting.
“You think you have me?” she roared out. “I have bested Luke Skywalker. I’m the Lady of the Sith.”
“You’re still ugly and you talk too much,” Xander said, using Dun Möch.
“I will let your friends suffer as I slowly torture them to death. The tale of your parents’ death will be told for millenniums for the pain I will cause them. And your cute little sister Lexa. I think I’m going to let my vampires have their ways with her before she is dead,” Lumiya said, also using Dun Möch.
“You know I’m starting to feel like I’m in a standup comedian show. They aren’t even on this planet,” Xander said, grinning.
The two carefully watched each other and the Forge watched them both.
Then the fight started.
Xander attacked and Lumiya was forced to parry. Her whip wasn’t as useful inside the tight area, it kept slashing the wall and cutting of pipes.
“HELP ME,” she ordered the forge.
And it attacked not one of them but both. Strange tentacle like manipulators extruded from every corner of the machine. Welding sparks rained down on them, trying to cut and burn them. Cutting tools took swung at them and it even used force blasts trying to crush them. They parried just as fast and far stronger than the Forge could.
And the two in the middle of the attack kept fighting each other as well
Lumiya parried with a swinging move of the whip that almost cut him and she cut of a tentacle arm holding a welding torch. Xander parried a force lightning and redirected it back to the Forge.
It attacked them again and both of them let loose an attack at against the forge at the same time. Lumiya send a massive force lightning inside it and Xander pulled of an emerald lightning, cutting a hole.
They jumped back as the Forge let free a scream of pure mental pain.
The two masters of light and dark fell to their knees and then struggling, they stood up again. “And stay out of our fight,” Xander said to the Forge.
Strangely enough Lumiya agreed her voice dripping of venom.
Both were now increasing their speed, jumping from floor to wall around inside the machine. Slicing and cutting each other they both tried to get in a killing strike.
It didn’t take long before Lumiya dropped her light whip. Xander’s constant attacks and this cramped place had destroyed it and with a ‘Hiss’ she activated her old trusted lightsaber and a second blade. Like Xander she had chosen a short dagger in her off hand. Using a force whip and using dual blades was way different, but it demanded the same rare talent needed to make two blades effective.
The two started at each other again. One filled with hatred and the other with determination in ending the fight once and for all. They really wanted to see the other one dead, even at the cost of their own life.
“No surrender,” Xander said.
Lumiya agreed and added. “And no retreat.”
He gave her a crocket smile “Of all the enemies I have fought, you are the most interesting and scary one,” he finished, then added. “And butt ugly.”
“No one insults my butt,” Lumiya yelled and attacked, a bit flattered that he considered her interesting.
“It’s strange, I mean you must have had a brain once upon a time. You managed to infiltrate the rebellion and trick Luke. Now you’re just like a rampaging rancor, no brain and no style. What happened? Those nasty Sith anger pills got to you or did a vampire suck out your brain?”
She was really starting to hate him. So she attacked using a massive force push focused on a small area, enough to crush his head.
Xander parried and redirected the attack up, causing a rain of metal to crash down on him and he was pushed back. Lumiya used the situation and slashed and cut as fast as she could. He was forced to parry and dodge for his life, then returning the favor he did a new trick Corran Horn taught him.
He focused the ambient light in the area in to one massive and blinding flash aimed at Lumiya.
The dark lady jumped back seeing only spots, not that it stopped her from fighting she just closed her eyes just as Xander took over the offensive and the two clashed again. Pure power flowed against each other as the walls around them started to melt and crack by the power they were pouring out.
Lumiya was a bit more skilled than he was, but Xander was far bit more powerful. So they were surprisingly even in the battle so far. Both were genetically augmented and improved and one was also cybernetically enhanced. That was the analysis Lumiya had come to from the fight so far.
And suddenly an enormous wave of energy was flying against Xander, sending him crashing down the corridor and he tumbled to the ground.
Lumiya had a hideous smile on her lips. “For years I’ve been hampered by the cybernetic implants limiting my ability in the force. Not anymore,” she bragged. She had finally arranged for new cloned body parts to replace the old cybernetic parts and she was more powerful than ever. “Now you will die. I have tested you strength and it is lacking.” Dark shadows filled her end of the corridor and force lightning danced around her blade.
Xander slowly stood up with a grim smile on his lips. “Too bad bitch, that I did the same,” he said, letting white light fill the corridor around him and a strange green light dance around the two light sabers in his hand.
And once again the two attacked, moving so fast it was only a blur to the eye. The corridor was turned black and white from the strange color distortions that were created.
Outside HK-47 looked up as they could see the strange light shining out from the Forge. “Statement: I’m impressed.”
“Yes and HK-47 imagine that normally my dear old kick ass husband acts like a clown,” Jaina said with a smile.
They were interrupted as suddenly Xander and Lumiya came flying out, still fighting as they were running at full speed, trying to remove the other’s head, their blades dancing against each other.
“My color combination is so much better than yours,” Xander bragged.
And the two landed not even an inch from Noh Noss. They moved away, jumping around. HK-47 used the butt end of his rifle in the last second to make sure Noh Noss’ head wasn’t cut off.
On the floor with a broken nose Noh Noss blinked. Did that droid use the rifle to save his life? “Dank you,” he mumbled, grinning in pain. He grabbed his nose and pulled it straight. “I meant, Tank you.”
“Statement: Meatbag saving your life wasn’t fun. Breaking your nose and making master happy was a pleasure,” HK-47 replied.
Uncaring about anything else, Lumiya and Xander were locked in combat. Suddenly she broke off and jumped up, sending a massive rain of force lightning down on him as well as lifting up steel bars, containers with her mind and then sending them crashing down on Xander.
With one single jump he landed inside the Forge further away from her just as tons of junk crashed down where he had been standing a moment before.
The two looked out form the machine seeing each had entered it through a different entry hole. They both vanished inside the machine, running to find and kill the other.
“Was that a smile I saw on Xander’s face?” Noh Noss asked.
Jaina nodded. “He can be such a boy sometimes,” she said with a fond smile.
“Query: Your husband is a real Jedi?” HK-47 said.
“He is, an unusual one,” Jaina replied with a smile.
“He is a Jedi Master and a master of the light saber. I still don’t know who the winner was when he and Luke tested each other,” Noh Noss said.
Jaina snorted. “He refused to tell me and Luke refused to say anything to Mara. All they said was one of them was the winner.”
“Statement: A sure sign of Jedi masters. The constant need of cryptic speaking which is annoying,” HK-47 said.
Inside Xander’s head was almost removed as part of his helmet was cut because he almost ran right in to Lumiya’s shota blade. He paid her back by giving her hip armor a deep cut.
“First strike is yours,” Xander said and continued, “but the last one will be mine.”
Lumiya was pushed back, finding no weaknesses in his style that had all strength and no draw backs except for being almost absurdly hard to learn or teach. She was pushed back and panic started to hit her as Xander raised both blades just as she attacked him.
He struck back, dancing perfectly between her light-blades. Xander’s light-saber cut up from the floor to the roof, slicing of her right foot and right arm under the shoulder.
His light-shota moved just a second later in the opposite direction, cutting of her left arm and slicing her left leg almost below the hip. As she fell down Xander’s movement carried him another meter away from her.
Taking a deep breath Xander realized that he wasn’t hurt, she had missed the attack and was completely disarmed. One arm and one hand were missing as well as one foot and one leg.
He looked at her. “If I was Luke I would probably leave you here, but I’m not. Your life ends now,” he said. Before he had a chance to act the Sith Forge intervened. Tentacles grabbed the Sith Lady and carried her inside the Forge itself. Xander tried to follow, but couldn’t. Inside he could see the Forge operate on her, improving her.
“She will be my creation now,” it spoke.
Irritation didn’t begin to describe Xander’s feelings about this turn of events. The Sith Forge’s size made it difficult to destroy and he had a feeling that if he did, the resulting explosion would be devastating, perhaps for the whole continent or more. But letting the mad machine or forge whatever turn the Dark Lady of the Sith into its loyal cretin wasn’t a choice either. Lucky he had an alternative. “Jaina, move back and out of the hangar, now,” he said as he focused the power of the void he had inside of him. “You are never going to hurt anybody again Forge, never.”
As the force storm started first at the size of an ant it grew in strength.
Xander rushed out as fast as he could, moving like the wind he ran for his life. He spotted Thunder running towards him. He quickly grabbed the Cyber steed and they rode out as fast as they could, where the others were already waiting.
Behind them a small short lived wormhole swallowed the Sith Forge and then it collapsed. A wave of energy made the whole hangar shiver and part collapse behind them.
“Xander… where did you send it?” Jaina asked.
He shrugged. “To any dimension where they have no access to the force or it could just as easily be ripped asunder and apart in to pure energy.” Looking around he could see the dark side troopers and the adepts hadn’t run away yet. With some luck he could end the danger they could cause for generations.
They were silent and he also noticed a droid standing near his wife and it was looking at him.
“Hi I’m Xander. What’s your name?” he said to the droid.
“Statement: HK-47 and I serve master Jaina, meatbag,” it replied in a frosty tone.
Jaina had that strange smile that said ‘He followed me home, can I keep him?’
And Xander just knew they had another crew member. “Meatbag is biologically correct, but I prefer to be called Xander if you don’t mind HK-47. Just like droids don’t like to be called rust buckets or other awful names,” he said calmly.
“Clarification: I detest names like rust bucket and I understand you prior statement, Xander,” HK-47 replied.
Looking around he could see a problem coming. “Thanks HK-47. Alright team, we have incoming.” The dark side adepts, the vampires and the troopers were moving in on them. “HK-47 let`s have a friendly competition. Let`s see who terminates the most of the enemies surrounding us presently.”
“Query: What’s the competition about?” HK-47 asked.
Xander frowned: “If you win I buy you new equipment based on your choice, no more than 20.000 creds worth. If I win, I buy you the equipment I feel a warrior droid would need, for the same cost.”
The droid looked at him like he was crazy then turned to Jaina. She nodded and said, “He is a bit crazy, but he doesn’t lie about things like a competition.”
“Statement: Let the game begin,” HK-47 said with amusement in his voice.
“Um what’s happening?” Noh Noss asked. They couldn’t be talking about what he was thinking… were they?
Jaina took him by the shoulder. “Xander and HK-47 are going to demonstrate why attacking a peaceful planet and murdering everybody just so that the Sith cult could gain power is wrong. And they’ll make sure that five years from now none of these clowns come back and try it again, while they are at it.”