OE Rian Aslar vs. KE Selika Roh

Obelisk Exarch Rian Aslar

Equite, Clan Taldryan
Male Pantoran, Obelisk, Juggernaut
vs.

Krath Epis Selika Roh

Equite, Clan Plagueis
Female Human, Krath, Seeker
Comment

Gentlemen,

Thank you for participating in this round of the ACC Fading Light Tournament. I appreciate each of you taking the time to write your submissions. Rian, great work. Your writing has truly improved over the past year. You deserve a lot of credit for this improvement and so does your Clan.

Slags, nice work as always. Your writing was well done, you studied Rian's character sheet, and you know yours exceptionally well.

This was a close one, but Slags wins (barely). Rian's two posts had several simple spelling mistakes that could have been caught and some word choice errors (limb over limp) that could have been caught. Slags, I did deduct points for your illusion fatality because I felt it was a little too much, but your character sheet does support it to a degree. In the end, Selika wrote a better story and wins.

Thanks again for participating.

Hall Fading Light
Messages 4 out of 4
Time Limit 3 Days
Battle Style Alternative Ending
Battle Status Judged
Combatants OE Rian Aslar, KE Selika Roh
Winner KE Selika Roh
Force Setting Standard
Weapon Setting Standard
OE Rian Aslar's Weapons See Character Sheet (Legacy)
KE Selika Roh's Weapons See Character Sheet (Legacy)
Venue Begeren: Ancient Quarry
Last Post 26 May, 2014 5:02 PM UTC
Assigned Judge Grand Master Darth Pravus
Syntax - 15%
Master Selika Roh di Plagia Adept Rian Taldrya
Score: 4 Score: 3
Rationale: Some sentences come off a little unwieldy for my tastes (Before he could clear his mind, push through her illusions and realize that Selika was twisting his perceptions, she pounced on that fear.), but overall, nice work. Rationale: A couple of mistakes: 1. simultaneoulsy, spelling. 2. its, should be it's 3. talsiman, spelling 4. eachother, should be each other. 5. Saberlock, maybe saber lock (I didn't really count off for this one). 6. Some unwieldy sentence structure. 7. Limb body, should have been limp.
Story - 40%
Master Selika Roh di Plagia Adept Rian Taldrya
Score: 4 Score: 3
Rationale: Pretty good. I think this was one of your smoother and cleaner submissions in the past year. Rationale: Not bad at all. I already told this to you on mIRC, but your writing has improved greatly this past year. I thought your story flowed well and was clearly understandable.
Realism - 25%
Master Selika Roh di Plagia Adept Rian Taldrya
Score: 4 Score: 5
Rationale: I had a second grader come in and help look over the illusion/fatality end sequence. I thought it stretched the bounds of what an EQ3 could do to another EQ3, even with your skill set. I felt you took some liberties in knowing Rian's first failure (even with the intel dossier line). In the end 4/5. Rationale: No issues.
Continuity - 20%
Master Selika Roh di Plagia Adept Rian Taldrya
Score: 5 Score: 5
Rationale: NO issues. Flowed well with your opponent. Rationale: No issues. Flowed well with your opponent.
Master Selika Roh di Plagia's Score: 4.2 Adept Rian Taldrya's Score: 3.9
Posts

Begeren. Once a prosperous Sith world, it has been the site of numerous battles throughout the millennia. Grand halls and monuments were torn down and re-purposed by looting Republic forces thousands of years ago, before they were driven from the planet. Isolated settlements still dot the planet's surface, but the inhospitable, craggy, and desert-like terrain, along with the beasts common to many desert and Sith worlds, have kept most humanoids from colonizing. Occasional skirmishes have left debris scattered throughout the desert, and battles were fought here as recently as the Galactic Civil War. The planet is now under the control of the One Sith and is rumored to be full of all manner of priceless, ancient Sith artifacts.

The Dark Council has pushed forth to Begeren and the Grand Master, on his quest for ever more powerful items, has decreed the Clans and Houses seize anything of value. The unity shown by the Brotherhood during the beginning of this Crusade is fracturing, with the Clans and Houses growing tired and frustrated with the seemingly endless succession of battles. Tempers are flaring between former allies, with outright aggression no longer uncommon. Despite this, you have responded to the Grand Master's call—though whether it's to actually seize the items for the Brotherhood, destroy them, or use them for your own purposes, only you know. One such item, a Sith talisman, said to be inlaid with a dark side-infused gemstone, was lost in the quarries of Begeren during the liberation of the planet from Old Republic looters thousands of years ago.

The Force has drawn you here, to an abandoned quarry, in a mountainous region west of an expansive desert. Any mining equipment once used here is long gone, but the landscape itself remains surprisingly preserved from the days of the Old Republic's strip mining. Scrub brush, the only foliage present on this part of the planet, has taken root all along the sides of the quarry. The ledge overlooks a one-hundred meter drop into a crystal-clear basin of water; opposite the ledge is a more gradual, step-wise decline. The basin itself is peculiar, as no plants are growing in or around it, despite being one of the few bodies of liquid you have seen in the nearby area. A long, snaking ramp meanders down through the steps of the quarry towards the water below, beginning at the northward edge of the cliff you now find yourself on. You notice shards of gemstones crunch underfoot as you move, a hint as to the use of this quarry in ages past.

The gunboat flew a silent loop over the quarry before coming to a hovering stop above a ledge at the edge of the ancient quarry. The pilot's voice carried over the intership comm. "No visible signs of recent activity. This place is dead, my Lord. Do you still want to me to land?"

For the ordinary eye, there was little to be seen, but those who could hear the whispers of the Force could feel that there was more to this place than what was obvious. "Just hold her steady," the Obelisk said, adrenaline and the thrill of what he might find on the ground boiling inside him. "And, when I exit, you may leave and return to your regular duties."

Before the pilot could respond the Consul overrode the in-flight safety protocols to let the side hatches slide open and leapt out of the gunboat. Descending to the ground, Rian drew on the Force, wrapping a bubble of invisible power around him, before landing in an explosion of might that shattered the ground beneath him and sent dirt and debris flying.

Rising to his full height, the Son of Taldryan felt the presence of another Force-user, but no one could be seen. Slowly, Rian walked over to the lip of the ledge and began his search for the talisman as well as the other presence. Looking down at the pool of water deep below, he could make out a vague shadow within its currents.

"It's not here," a voice drawled out from below him. "Or should I say, its not here anymore." Blowing a curl of purple hair out of her face while walking toward the Exarch, the woman's identity was easy to grasp: Selika Roh, a minor but powerful player within Clan Plagueis.

"The basin looks promising," Rian called, taking a step back from the edge. Maybe the blurred shadow was the wreckage of a ship belonging to scavengers that once had found the talisman and then had gone down over this quarry, surely it could be lifted to reveal its treasures. "There is something down in the water."

"From up here maybe." The Epis watched the other Darksider looking down at the shadow in the water. Of course the shadow is promising as she had already examined it from a closer distance, as it was the only lead in this otherwise empty place and the talsiman was hers to be and she wouldn't make any exceptions leaving it to someone else.

"Then letting me take a closer look wouldn't kill me, would it?" the Pantoran said with a smile.

Making his way away from the edge toward the meandering ramp, Rian began to work his way down to the basin, but was stopped in his tracks by the Plagueian blocking his way with her strikingly delicate features.

"Forget it Taldrya," she said.

"You know who I am. Placing yourself into my way won't mean you anything good, Krath."

As the Exarch brushed past her, onto the meandering slope, he could hear Selika's lightsaber slap into her hand. Turning back to her, Rian faced a hurricane. The Krath stood at the crest of the slope, calling forth all loose debris around her, and firing it toward the Taldrya. Shrapnel of gravel and gemstone raked his face and bit into his armor. Dashing uphill from her, his own lightsaber found its way into his hand, and two glowing sky-blue blades emerged brilliantly in the air.

Seeing his charge being barely halted, Roh let go of all remaining restraints, falling fully into the Force. The Dark Side appeared to be coursing through her as she brought up her amethyst blade to catch Rian's crushing downward strike. Their blades met once, twice, three times, sending sparks flying at every exchange. The Force of the Obelisk's blow made her arms quiver, but she gave no ground.

Rian reared back, putting some distance between the Plagueian and himself before rising up to his full height. The air sizzled as his lightsaber carved elaborated patterns, first around his body, then another above his head. A knowing smile crept across his face, as he leapt again for her, and then the real battle began.

Selika slid to the side, her blade redirecting the incoming strike away from her throat and up over her shoulder, knowing the direction its twin would inevitably come from, she threw herself backward to avoid it.

Another exchange drove her back several more meters, pressing her relentlessly toward the northern wall of the excavation. Taking another step back, she felt her heel butt up against the edge of the wall. She had to act and she had to do it quickly.

Having her pinned down at the wall the Taldrya hesitated, considering whether or not to land a death stroke. His hesitation cost him though, as seizing the opportunity, the fingers of Selika's free hand flickered in an intricate pattern as she unleashed her sorcery on him.

A blast of telekinetic power leapt from Selika's hand aimed at the Taldrya's chest. Even before her attack he was already twisting away, his movement resulting in a glancing blow instead of a devastating one. His motion did, however, provide Selika the opening she needed to sidestep away from the stone wall of the quarry.

"Indecision. I wouldn't have expected that from you, Aslar," Selika taunted while silently cajoling herself.

Stupid, letting him get close like that! she thought. He's a fighter, you should know better.

Selika backpedaled along the inclined path leading farther down into the quarry, giving ground before her opponent without allowing his passage. While he could bypass her and jump down to the next level of the switchback, Selika knew he would follow. Taking a more direct route to the quarry floor would require Rian to turn his back, something a warrior such as himself would never do. Besides, he had grown up a pit fighter and been inducted into the Obelisk. Selika knew that neither aspect would allow him to walk away from a fight.

"It is a mistake I won't make again," Rian said, narrowing his eyes.

As Selika's mind worked furiously, trying to penetrate the Pantoran's thoughts, he hurled his twin bladed saber towards her. The weapon spun forward from his outstretched hand straight for Selika's neck. Selika's free hand clenched into a fist and jerked downward, matching a manifestation of Force energy.

The hammerblow that fell upon the weapon was more than enough to overcome the strength of Rian's telekinetic guidance. The trajectory of the saber altered violently, slamming down into the dust with crushing force. The blades winked out as a sharp electrical crack echoed through the quarry, the sound made as components were crushed and power cells overloaded.

Before Selika could once again taunt her adversary, Rian was already rushing forward, his second lightsaber leaping from his belt and into his hand. She could feel the power radiating from him, the white hot anger of his rage giving the already formidable man even more power. He was upon her so quickly, she was afforded no opportunity to avoid him and had barely raised her weapon before his first blow slammed into her.

It was all Selika could do to hold back the tall man's onslaught, given not even a second to contemplate taking the offense, let alone the time to act. Blow after blow rained down on her, most barely deflected from their course by her parries. Some avoided her blade and nearly found her flesh. One sizzled by her head so closely that the tip of Rian's blade burned through some of her hair, leaving an acrid smell in its wake.

Selika could feel herself tiring, the muscles in her arms beginning to ache and burn from the strain of the repeated blows. She knew that the Consul could only maintain his current strength for a limited time, hoping that her own defenses would not give out before he did. Then, suddenly, his leg was sweeping towards hers as he completed a spinning swing of his saber. Her feet knocked out from under her, Selika fell backwards as her head hit the stone beneath her with jarring force. Stars exploded before her eyes as her lightsaber clattered from her grip and bounced away.

The dark fire in Rian's eyes filled her view as her vision cleared, standing over her with his blade held above his head in a two handed grip. As the weapon began to slice down towards her face, Selika reached out with her left hand and through the Force to halt the killing blow, the vice-like grip of her Force power wrapping itself around his wrists. The blade, however, still moved downward slowly as Rian pushed against her resistance.

"The lightsaber will kill you just as well slowly as quickly," Rian said, his body straining against her grip as beads of sweat appeared on his forehead.

Selika knew he was right as the blade moved inexorably down towards her, centimeter by centimeter. Unless something changed, the blade would reach its goal and bisect her head. Her only possible escape required a gamble.

She redirected some of her energy away from holding back her enemy's weapon and reached out with her other hand. As Rian's blade accelerated its plunge, Selika turned her face away and held her eyes tightly shut. The Force she had woven with her own bioelectrical energy burst forth between the two combatants as blinding light. Selika then released her grip on Rian's wrists, rolling to her left as the lightsaber gouged a furrow into the ground her head had occupied a mere heartbeat before.

Selika could feel Rian reaching out with his rudimentary Force sense as she pulled herself to her feet, but he did not seem to be able to locate her with any specificity. He turned left and right, his weapon held out in front of him in a tentative guard. Picking up her saber hilt from where it had landed, Selika realized that he couldn't see her through the Force.

"Perhaps if you'd focused less on using the Force as a simple tool to smash your adversaries," Selika said under her breath, "You would be able to see your death coming."

Selika approached him, moving as quietly as possible. She waited until he had turned away from her before raising her weapon, activating it with the telltale snap-hiss only as she swung it down towards him.

Her triumph quickly turned to dread as she felt the Force burst forth from the Taldrya as if a dam had burst. Even without seeing her, without knowing the blow was coming, he had moved as if by reflex to counter her strike. The wave of telekinetic energy slammed into Selika's body, lifting her from her feet and into the open air. Her mind addled by the blow, Selika barely registered the air rushing by as she plunged towards the water below.

Rian blinked away the last remnants of the flash that had temporarily blinded him, his opponent nowhere to be seen. Carefully the Taldrya glanced over the ledge, catching the form of Selika inertly drifting in the water below. She must have hit the water badly, but appearances can be deceptive – probing out with his mind he found evidence, indeed she had hit the surface hard but she was a skilled Force user and must have pulled up a protecting barrier around her body immediately before the impact.

Not needing to hurry, the Taldrya paced down the slope to the shoreline. Selika in the meantime had drifted toward the point Rian was now standing but remained otherwise motionless. Grabbing the Epis, he dragged her limb body so she was face-to-face with him. Soaken hair hung loose and water dribbled from her all over while she groaned softly as her exhausted body was lifted from the water. Suddenly her eyes burst open, knifing amethyst irises pierced through him as tendrils of the Dark Side forced their ways into the Consul's head.

Rian's training kicked in faster than his thoughts would normally have allowed for, raising an invisible barrier before him, but even that couldn't save him totally from what would come next.

Images from his past flashed up before him, memories of friends and allies he had lost during his life, haunting him in an infinite loop, making him lose his grip on Selika's collar.

"You were unable to save their lives in the past, as you are unable to save your own," Selika's voice boomed inside his head. "now you will share their fate, Taldrya."

A telekinetic blast heaved the Consul from his feet, slamming him backward onto the ground where he remained pinned down under the weight of her Power. Selika's drew her blade and raised it high to deliver the death strike.

Rian sensed the danger he was in at the last instant, his hand reflexively pistoning forward, hitting her face hard with the Force. "Not bad at all for one seeing the Force just as a tool to smash my opponents, isn't it?"

The blow made her cartwheeling away from him, giving him enough time to jump to his feet again and into a fighting crouch.

Selika spat a mouthful of blood onto the ground and held her lightsaber at the ready, mirroring his stance. Then she burst out laughing, her free hand moving to the side of her belt, where she fished a filigree necklace with an embedded crystal out of a pocket, while further increasing the distance between herself and the Taldrya.

“You see it's already too late Taldrya, for all the time it has been too late. I didn't wanted to use this yet, but I guess you leave me no choice, now face the true Power of the Dark Side.”

As she snarled viciously, sparks began to form waves of electricity connecting her hands with the ground in a circle around her. Taking no chances, the Consul bounded into a dash toward her. Holding her ground she watched him come and unleashed veins of electricity upon him. However, anticipating her move, Rian leaned into his blade to intercept it.

Sweat beaded her forehead as the imaginary veins of electricity twisted around his blade and then he broke through her will, the illusion faded and dissipated into nothingness, leaving him once more face-to-face with her, smiling confidently her free hand burst forward and upward again. Power went before her attack, distorting the air between them. The Consul not only held his ground but went through it, unharmed, knowing that this would take her off guard.

“Huh, is that the best you can do? A real warrior knows how to stand his ground, always!"

Then he fell upon her, knowing that the game now went on long enough. His blade spinning and slashing, using his augmented strength to bury her under a barrage of strikes. Stabbing low, he allowed her to slap his blade out wide then reversed his motion into a backhand cut at her midriff, leaping over it, she mounted a counter-attack, that the Taldrya easily caught with his blade. Lunging again, Rian, altered the angle of his blade just so slightly allowing her to lock their blades together. For a single instant they stared at eachother throughout an glowing X, then with a flick of his hand, his blade jerked free from the saberlock and simultaneoulsy sheered through flesh and bone, leaving a charred, smoldering stump where Selika's lightsaber hand had been a blink earlier.

"Sorry you had to learn this lesson the hard way."

Her expression fell blank with horror. He watched her as long as he could while he spun his blade around his body and rode it into a stab that pierced her through the chest and came out the other side. When her mouth fell slack and her eyes went numb he freed his blade from her body and tugged it back to his belt. For as much as he savored from his victory he still had a job to do, wading into the basin he activated the inbuilt life support systems of his battlesuit and dove for the wreckage under water.

A heartbeat before she splashed into the water, Selika's senses snapped into focus. Only the adrenaline that surged through her as she realized her plight allowed her to call the Force quickly enough to save herself from grievous injury. The Force barrier was nearly completely formed when she plunged into the water. The barrier shattered as it absorbed most of the kinetic energy of the fall, but the air still whuffed out of Selika's lungs as it was driven from her chest by the force of impact.

The water's chill began to eat at her as Selika kicked her feet to bring herself to the surface, grateful that her fall had been into the deep side of the quarry. As her head broke the surface and she greedily sucked in air, she realized that her saber was no longer in her hand. She had lost it as a result of Rian's telekinetic blow or hitting the water, but either way it was now somewhere on the basin's bottom.

A slight setback, Selika thought to herself, knowing the saber was not her most formidable weapon.

She swam for the far edge of the quarry, sensing her opponent moving down the path on the near side to follow. The breeze that now blew chilled her exposed skin even more as she pulled herself fully from the water, the air offering little more comfort than the water. The cold seemed to intensify the nagging pains and aches that seemed to cover her entire body. She would likely be covered with bruises once they had time to manifest.

Turning to face her foe, Selika could feel that his power had ebbed, leaving him momentarily drained. He was moving more slowly than before, but she could feel him slowly shaking off the fatigue. As her perception probed his mind more directly, she finally achieved entry. His mental focus had waned with his fatigue, leaving his mediocre mental defenses weakened and allowing her entry. The battlefield could now shift from the physical to the mental, moving to where Selika had the advantage. She smiled.

"You seem to be more than a match for me, Aslar," Selika said, holding her arms out from her body with her empty hands held palm upward. "I will not impede your progress further."

Selika brought the slightest pressure to bear on his perceptions, and the Consul nodded. "You make a wise decision, Krath." Deactivating his saber, he clipped the weapon on his belt and turned towards the water.

Selika, however, was not done with him yet. Plagueis, like any other Clan, maintained detailed dossiers on the other Clans, and their leaders were no exception. Selika was always looking for exploitable weaknesses, and had been sure to become familiar with that information. Their profile on Rian Aslar showed a man that used an air of positivity to mask his worries, his fear. He was also a leader who would do almost anything to protect his Clansmen. As Selika read him, he was a man who likely feared failing those he lead. And with a path into his mind open to her, Selika could use fear.

As he waded into the water Selika moved through his perceptions, making him think that perhaps he saw subtle movement within the shadowy depths that he had first seen from the quarry's edge. Rian's attention moved away from her as he became more focused on the depths, Selika slowly following him.

Then, weaving the Force together to create more than just phantom thoughts, she made him see what wasn't there. The dark forms that he now saw in the depths were bodies, bodies that bore faces he knew. She painted death masks of Keirdagh, Shaz'air, Howlander, and more of those Rian felt were his responsibility.

"No…" he whispered, the fear that Selika had known lay within him finally coming to the surface.

Before he could clear his mind, push through her illusions and realize that Selika was twisting his perceptions, she pounced on that fear. She grasped onto that fear with the Force, pouring her energy through it to build distraction into a debilitating weight.

"You failed them, Rian," she said quietly as she moved close to him, her voice nearly a whisper. "They depended on you, and now they're dead."

The Taldrya dropped to his knees, water now lapping at his waist. The initial illusion was fading, but the latent fear that was now gripping him was causing his own mind to bring forth it's own images of death, those times before where Rian saw his own failure. As Selika reached out for Rian's own saber, one of those images burst before her perceptions of Rian's mind. A Rattataki, the image of the man dying in Rian's arms.

"His first failure," Selika mumbled to herself.

Once again she brought forth her illusions, this time it was the body of the Rattataki that lurked in the depths, this time at Rian's feet. Fear overwhelming him, the Pantoran reached out and pulled the image to him. Selika made sure his fingers felt solid flesh and bone as she unclipped Rian's weapon from his belt and ignited it. She raised the weapon high as recoiled in fear and revulsion from the personal demon she had called from his own past.

"And now your last," she mocked, driving the weapon downward.

In his last moment Rian Aslar might have finally realized what was going on, raising his arm and trying to call the Force to his defense. It was, however, too late and Selika felt her blow stab downward through his chest. The look of dawning realization was frozen on Rian's face as the blade plunged through his heart and killed him, much to Selika's satisfaction.

She deactivated the blade and Rian fell forward with a splash, his body coming to rest beside the illusory Rattataki. Selika turned away and allowed her illusion to fade, as the final spark of life faded from the Taldryan Consul's body.