Styx: Ambush

"GRRRAH!"

The Zealot's wrathful cries as he tore soldiers and droids apart could not be muffled by the noises of the battlefield. They pierced the ears of the belligerents with paralyzing poignancy. Even the fiercest of the enemy troopers and the most dispassionate of the Jedi could not help shivering at the sound of Styx's screams.

Something had changed. The ex-Sith advanced through the enemy lines by means of a gruesome bloodbath. He did not care who they were or what had brought them here: these troops were invading Tython, and such could not be tolerated. His gravity and reticence gave place to aggression and viciousness. No sorrow, no pity, no remorse; he felt nothing but fury as he gracefully slaughtered his foes.

The deadly Zealot left a significant gap within the outsiders' lines; a trail filled with corpses and droid parts, to be more precise. The Jedi Healer, who followed Styx with incredible tenacity, protected the former Darth's back from enemy fire. Unlike the Zealot of Kalikori, Lortu Bassta showed no emotion whatsoever. His was the way of the Jedi and that of their predecessors. To Styx, the Selkath's attunement to the Light Side seemed ethereal and ubiquitous. To Lortu, the Zealot's prowess over the Dark Side was not only visible, it was also tangible and often aimed at something - or someone. The Selkath kept a suspicious eye on Styx as they entered the Temple, as did a handful of idle Jedi who had just observed the brutal carnage perpetrated by the mysterious guardian of Tython's humble Twi'lek community.

As Styx and Lortu approached the Eye of Zallow, the voice of a Jedi broke the quiescence in the Temple's main hall. "Seize him!" Immediately, the idle Jedi, who had followed the duo since they entered the Temple, ignited their lightsabers. Styx did the same. And so did Lortu. The five Jedi encircled them, and a fight would have ensued if it was not for the intervention of the one who enacted the order.

"Venerable Lortu Bassta, we are in debt to you," said a dignified Nomar Organa, "for delivering us this Sith!"

The Selkath was startled. "What!?"

"You know what I refer to, my friend, no need to humble yourself!" Organa turned to Styx with a disdainful demeanor. "As for you, Sith-"

"I am not a Sith!" The Zealot's shout echoed throughout the monumental lobby.

"I believe otherwise, Sith! Your crimes against the Republic won't be left unpunished! Darth Styx, it's time the Council judges your miserable fate!"

Styx regained his mien of somber serenity. "I have no intention of speaking with your Council."

"Wrong answer, 'Zealot'! Now move!"

The Zealot deactivated his saberstaff. Lortu Bassta approached him to apologize for the misunderstanding, but Styx's cold heart dealt poorly with betrayal, even if the Jedi Healer played no part on it. "Leave my sight, Selkath. For now." Once he said that, the Zealot walked up to Nomar Organa and whispered: "Mock me again with an order and I shall rip you apart, limb by limb, in front of your fellow Jedi, and I shall give your dissected carcass to the Flesh Raiders to feast upon it!"

Nomar stood speechless. He seemed mesmerized by Styx's threat while the five idle Jedi escorted Styx to the Council's presence. Lortu was about to follow the group when Nomar stopped him.

"My venerable friend Bassta, your healing skills are required in the battlefield, not in the Council's room."

"But I must go with hi-"

"Don't worry, I'll keep you in touch about it. Now go, our fellow Jedi need your assistance!"

Lortu groaned as he left the Temple hesitantly. "That Sith was right about one thing: Nomar really does like to boss other people around!"

The End

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