A few weeks later.
Shadie stood in the centre of the Jedi Council chamber, alone, among all the Masters who sat around her in the circular room. It had been some time longer than she thought before they summoned her. They had let her mourn the loss of Kromus; thinking about how he would not turn to the light pained her. The light side would have kept him alive. She felt a pang in her heart for this loss. She could not deny she had never stopped caring or hoping he’d turn from his evil ways. Those around her had understood that, Knarf especially, and had respected her ever changing mood since their return.
There had been a ceremony for Master Juun Kloh in the Great Hall of the Jedi Temple. There weren’t many who bore ill feelings towards Fane for his death. Most of the older Jedi saw it as the act that opened Fane’s eyes of the cruelty of the dark side, thus returning him towards the path of the light. They said that perhaps Master Juun Kloh knew this would happen and sacrificed himself for Fane’s sake. Others were more wary, but knew how Shadie had embraced the light after so many years in darkness, and they had faith that Fane had simply slipped. But there were those who argued that Shadie had been Sith, had known nothing else but darkness until she discovered the light, and that Fane had known the light before and had turned away from it; Shadie had never turned away from the light once she had found it. They would watch him carefully until he had redeemed himself completely. Not paid for his crime, she hoped, but proven his heart.
Shadie had somewhat already begun to apprentice him in healing from his brief yet intense glimpse into the dark side. Strangely enough, in return, he seemed to be helping her heal as well. Master Juun Kloh had always said that the student teaches the master as much as the master teaches the student, and many times in ways the master could not imagine.
She remembered walking in the Jedi Temple gardens with Fane, noticing how his unruly hair had a certain style to it, and how when the light shone on it, it was much lighter than Lahnius’s had been. His smile and his eyes showed a kindsness and softness that proved the true nature of his heart, led by the light side.
He had said to her: ‘All my life, even though Lahnius was a Sith, while he lived, I felt comforted. I had hoped that he would some day turn from the dark side. Perhaps I would be the one to help him turn to the light. When you killed him, that hope was gone, but sometimes, I now realise, a Sith cannot turn, will not turn, no matter how much of the beautiful light you show them, and if you want to put an end to the destruction they cause and save all that you hold dear, all those whom you love and care for, sometimes, to save them as well, save them from themselves, there is no other way than through death. Sometimes it is the death of a Jedi Master that will let one see how their soul was corrupted, let him see how it does not bring him comfort to have killed him and make him regret so much that at the moment of truth, he decides to save one who’s been a friend in the past.
‘And sometimes one must kill the Sith himself because she has done everything with love for him to save him and he will not save himself. Kromus may not have been your brother by blood, as Lahnius was mine, but your brother he was, a brother by love, and in the end, you killed him to save the galaxy and to save him from falling furthermore into the darkness to which he had dictated his life. Even if one has mastered the dark side, he keeps falling forever if he chooses to. You did not kill Lahnius to hurt me, you didn’t even know of my hopes and dreams for him. I understand that now. But you had those same hopes for Kromus and you gave him that chance, many chances, for those hopes to become reality. He chose the dark side. Death was imminent. But then again, there is no death, there is the Force.’
They had both grieved and cried that day, together mourning a loss of a Sith brother, now able to understand each other in ways no one else, even Knarf, could ever understand them, in a way only master and apprentice could. Master and apprentice often formed a whole in the Force. Fane understood why it had been necessary and primordial for Lahnius to die. And Shadie understood why Fane had been so hurt about his brother’s death. She hurt for Kromus’s death in that same way, but differently, for she had been the one to kill him in the end.
Shadie turned her attention back to the masters in the circular room. They had been quiet and pensive for quite some time now. She had already given a full account of the events that had taken place aboard Kromus’s dreadnought, including the destruction of the holocron, the revelations about Darth Gourd and the warning Kromus seemed to have given her before his death. There was something to do with immense power connected to Gourd and it was quite possible that Kromus thought only the dark side could achieve the great power necessary to defeat it, whatever it was. Shadie had also told the masters of Gourd’s escape and disappearance, and all the arguments of why she believes she is ready to be a master.
‘You may choose to be Eidahs or Shadie, that is your choice,’ Master Herl’unik said at last, ‘but your actions prove the Jedi you are, prove the mastery of the Force that you possess. The combination of light side and dark side powers to create more light side powers is a feat very few have accomplished since the beginning of the Jedi Order.’ He paused. His Zabrak cheaks flushed as he smiled. ‘You have shown wisdom and the capability to guide Fane towards the path of the light in ways none of us imagined were possible.’ There was reverence and pride in his voice. ‘Master Juun Kloh always had great faith in you, from the moment you sought to turn away from the dark side. ”Teach me then the ways of the light side and help me understand this grief and anger I bear.” Those were your precise words to me in this very chamber, many years ago. Master Juun Kloh had been present among us. As you tell me, Fane pretty much said the same thing you did back then, albeit in his words.’ He paused, his tone became grave.
‘Killing a Jedi Master is a crime that cannot go unpunished. Killing your own master is very severe. And very sad for one such as Fane, a young Jedi Knight with great potential to do good for the galaxy. But you have faith in him, as your master had in you.’ Master Herl’unik looked at some of the other masters who nodded in unison. ‘I will ask this of you, Shadie, to continue Master Juun Kloh’s legacy in training.’
‘I will do my best, Master Herl’unik, to use my skills and abilities, and to show any apprentice of mine my light, and guide them in the same manner Master Juun Kloh guided all his pupils. Using my own techniques, of course.’
Master Herl’unik laughed. ‘Of course. You are your own person. It is with great pride that I grant you the title of Jedi Master.’
‘Thank you.’ Shadie bowed curtly, bending her upper body forward.
‘As for Fane, he must prove to us he has returned fully to the light, but first he must pay for his crime.’ Shadie braced herself; she hoped it would not be too severe. She hoped he would not be forced to be stripped of the Force. She looked Master Herl’unik dead in the face. ‘He is therefore exiled from Coruscant until his master deems him ready to return and to show us his light. That means you, Master Eidahs; Fane is now your apprentice.’
‘Where will I train him then, if not at the Temple on Coruscant? Tython?’
‘The ancient Temple on Tython is not yet ready. I believe, however, you will find hospitality with your new friends. I have been speaking with the Mandalore and he has agreed to let you set up there for some time. Master Salah will accompany you and help you settle in.’
‘Thank you.’ Shadie bowed again.
‘Shadie! I put great faith in you. I hope for all our sakes you have not misjudged Fane’s true heart.’
‘Did Master Juun misjudge mine?’ she asked, a tear in her eye.
Master Herl’unik held her gaze. Then he smiled simply and Shadie nodded in response.
She exited the Council Chambers and went out into the hall. Standing, leaning his back on a wall, patiently waiting for her, dressed in his handsomest civilian clothes, was Knarf. He looked at her and smiled.
He walked towards her. ‘And so?’ He stopped before her, facing her, awaiting her reply.
She smiled. ‘I have been granted the title of Master.’
‘Congratulations!’ He embraced her enthusiastically.
‘So now I’m Fane’s master. It’s a strange feeling.’ Knarf nodded. ‘Since Master Juun Kloh has passed, I no longer have a master of my own,’ Shadie said as they began walking together.
‘Yeah, neither do I.’
‘Well, if you wanted to, I could be your master,’ replied Shadie, genuinely thinking he could learn a bit more in the Force if he truly wished it.
‘Uh, I don’t need a master,’ replied Knarf humourously.
‘No, I’m…’ he looked up in a cute manner with a cute corner smile, ‘…self-taught.’
‘Really? I’m sure Brenum would disagree,’ she laughed.
‘It’s true!’ Knarf insisted. ‘I’ve honed in on my own skills and abilities.’
‘Mmm,’ she exaggerated an unsure and hesitant tone. ‘I’m sure you could use some mastering.’
Knarf laughed. Then, in a seductive tone, he added. ‘Oh. No, Shadie.’ Suddenly Knarf took her by the arms and pushed her onto the wall in a most sensual manner, pinning her arms up, holding them with his hands, his lips barely touching hers and whispered: ‘I’ll Master you!’
Shadie breathed in, desire filling her senses. Knarf kissed her ever so passionately.
‘Ehem!’ Brenum cleared his throat in an obvious and exaggerated manner. Shadie and Knarf looked to the side to find Brenum, Trylia and Fane standing in the hallway. ‘Is that the proper way a Jedi Master should act? In the Jedi Temple!’
Fane clicked his tongue. ‘Setting such examples to her new apprentice. What will the others think?’
‘That they need to get a room,’ said Brenum.
‘Oh, so you heard me announce the news?’ Shadie asked. Fane nodded.
‘There are some flower beds made of the natural flowers on Shili that emit vaporous pheromones into the air and are excellent for fornication.’ Everyone looked at Trylia. She blushed.
‘You know from experience?’ asked Brenum.
‘A girl never reveals all her secrets.’
Knarf looked at Shadie, smiling, his mouth ajar, his tongue gliding his teeth. ‘How about vacation on Shili, my love?’
When the giggles and smiles died down, everyone had a serious expression.
‘Fane,’ began Shadie.
‘I know,’ replied Fane. ‘Master Salah informed us while you were with Master Herl’unik and the other masters of the Council.’
‘What about?’ asked Knarf, creasing his brow between both eyebrows.
Shadie briefly explained the circumstances of Fane’s exile.
‘Talyc will be happy.’ Kanrf smiled. ‘When do we leave?’
‘Tomorrow,’ said Fane. ‘I have time to say my goodbyes to those who are still my friends.’
‘We won’t be going though,’ said Trylia. ‘Well, to drop you off, at least.’
It was Shadie’s turn to crease her brow.
‘We’re going to Csilla,’ said Brenum. ‘That kriffing blue skinned Chiss Sith got away and his Sith are still running around the galaxy. That coupled with Kromus’s warning, we have to start searching somewhere to gain allies against this new threat. Kromus is dead, but the war is not over yet. I’m sure the Chiss Ascendancy did not know Gourd was a dark side Force-user, but it’s a good place to start and I’m sure they’ll appreciate the offer of an alliance.’
‘We’ll return to Mandalore as soon as we’ve learnt more,’ said Trylia. ‘We promise.’
Shadie nodded. Knarf took her hand. ‘Come, my love, let’s go pack up our things.’
‘So that’s what they’re calling it in the Core now,’ said Brenum.
‘Among other things,’ said Knarf, winking at Shadie.
‘Meet you all in the hangar tomorrow at first light,’ said Shadie.
A new phase in all their lives had begun, and a new phase in the Force; Shadie could feel it.
To be continued…
“JWielders of Pure Light” is written by Celinka Serre (2019).
Disclaimer: The Characters in this Fan-Fiction are new and have original names. The story is an original written work. The story is derivative and consistent of Fan-Fiction since it borrows the franchise world of Star Wars. Certain jargon and places, or concepts mentioned, along with the SW Old Republic universe belong to Lucasfilm Ltd. and Disney. No characters or storylines from the films are used. No storylines or characters from the games or books are used. A handful of characters from the games may be referenced, but are not the main focus in this fanfic story. This fan-fiction story falls under FairUse.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.