In orbit over Gilane, the Hunters of the Noble Rose activate the Holocron they found of the Jedi Master Celista, to learn as much as they can about the Noctis. The Holocron told the story of Lord Soror, a dark-side Force user who wanted more power, and crafted the three Stars of Noctis in the hopes of harnessing a dark and powerful evil, a personification of the Dark Side itself.
But while the Dark Lord successfully summoned this power, and manipulated for a time, it eventually took control of him, and it was in such a state that Jedi Master Celista and her Padawan Nalu encountered him, a pitiful shell being devoured from within. They defeated Lord Soror. And while the Hunters detected that there was more to the story left untold, the Holocron skipped ahead, detailing the construction of the Three temples to hide the Stars of Noctis, which she could not destroy. Someday, she foresaw the Noctis breaking free from where she had sealed it, and while she had found a way to destroy it, she claimed to be too weak to do it, and left the temples not just to protect, but to guide those who would stand against the Noctis in the end.
At this point, the Holocron of Celista stopped her story, saying that should the group prove itself worthy, and not under the influence of the Noctis, she would reveal more. On the subjects of her own death, the fate of her Padawan, and the locations of the final remaining temple, she remained mute, but warned the group that no servant of the Noctis could be trusted under any circumstances.
The Hunters reported to ODIN, telling Revan everything. Upon hearing of the groups deal with the Seer, reinforced by the ominous warning of the Holocron, Revan decided that he needed to personally meet the force user. As the group arrived to meet and gather the Seer‘s data for a strike against the Pontifex, Revan arrived as well, and after some rather forceful persuasion, took the Seer into ODIN’s protective custody. For now, he said, the group would continue with the Seer‘s plan to disable the Pontifex’s base. If the Augur did come, as the Seer believed, so be it. Otherwise, ODIN would strike the base itself, and kill the Pontifex, as these three were far too dangerous to leave alone in Wild Space, with or without some greater darkness guiding their efforts.
According to the Seer, While the Augur is highly insane, she has little ambition or apparent power base beyond herself. The Pontifex, however, seems to have his sights set upon Galactic Conquest. In his base of operations, he is currently hosting ambassadors to various groups to which he is forging ties, all to create an army. And with the Seer‘s information, the group can kill two birds with one stone. The Seer has a plan to finally take advantage of the hatred between the Pontifex and the Augur. The two are in direct competition for the favor of their Master, and as It senses the time of its release approaching, it will begin to allow its servants to destroy one another, as only one can receive It’s favor upon release.
The Seer has claimed that for a set amount of time, the Pontifex will be off planet, allowing the Hunters to move in, disable his base security systems, kill the ambassadors within the base, and escape to let the Augur murder the Pontifex for his perceived weakness.
On the planet Oncise, the Pontifex had built a massive, obvious fortress designed to withstand any frontal siege. However, finding the rear entrance guarded only by several probe droids, Lieutenant Martell and Troika Nobrose, along with Jarn Organa and a portion of Noble Squad, attacked. They destroyed the probes and entered the base relatively unscratched… but not unheard, as the droids had sent several alerts to the central computer.
Venturing into the ventilation shafts, the Hunters survived several dangers present in all ventilation shafts, including rotating fan blades, wall-mounted defense turrets, and black mold (apparently the Pontifex doesn’t take the time for proper roof maintenance, he really needs to have his vents checked, but it’s apparently not a priority for him… he’ll be sorry later when the roof collapses and it costs someone their life.)
Finding the central computer terminals right were the Seer said, they dropped down, weapons drawn, and convinced the technicians to step away from their terminals, but not before they set off another alert, causing Lieutenant Martell, in an uncharacteristic rage, to have the three executed. Troika Nobrose, along with Lisa Talken, successfully bypassed the systems security and used the Seer’s codes to shut down the base shields and external defenses, completing their first main objective. In addition, a quick scan of the computer systems for any relevant information revealed the location of the third temple complex, the Temple of Serenity.
But the Hunters had not been exactly stealthy, they had avoided shouting that they were in the base at the top of their lungs, but they had not gone unnoticed. Entering the main chamber of the base, several warriors, geared in Mandalorian armor, waited in preparation to face the Hunters. When the group defeated these warriors, the Commander refused to yield, stating that he would fight to defend the Vizsla. Examining the bodies, the Hunters found several icons and tokens which Troika Nobrose recognized as the symbols once used by the splinter group known as Death Watch.
From this room, the central door, leading to the front entrance according to the map, was locked. To the north, the Hunters heard the sounds of fighting and blaster fire, but to the south, they heard silence, punctuated by an occasional scream or cry. After some debate, they headed south, hoping to aid whoever was in pain before it was too late for them.
In the first room were groups of students, meditating in groups of four to keep simple orbs aloft in the air. But a quick check revealed how deadly this exercise was, they were using the force to suspend thermal detonators, one mistake would drop the detonator and kill the students. As they seemed in deep concentration, the Hunter’s proceeded cautiously, and passed the room without killing any of the students, trying to find the source of the screams.
The source was revealed in the next room, a dungeon-like room ringed by prisoners, some alive, some already dead, chained and facing a monstrous statue of the now familiar looking Noctis. The statue was built with an altar placed in front of it, and a shallow ring carved around the statue was filled with blood. This was an altar of sacrifice, and it seemed the prisoners were slated to die. The statue was ominous, just looking at it gave the Hunters an uncomfortable feeling. The Hunters freed the living prisoners, and Noble Squad escorted them back to the computer room, where Noble Leader began to administer emergency medical support, and the Hunters, appalled by this barbaric display, went forward to put an end to leader of these horrific practices.
There, sitting alone at the end of this long hallway was a lone woman, dressed in dark robes, a devious looking gauntlet on her hand, and three thermal detonators rotating around her head. Without any preamble, the party attacked. The woman rose, obviously of far greater strength then the students in the previous room, she hurled a detonator into the way of Lieutenant Martell’s leg rocket, deflecting some of its power and unleashed the power of the dark side upon the Hunters.
She was Darth Sley, once a proud warrior serving Darth Krayt, now little more then a beggar, but the Pontifex had persuaded her that he would be the next Emperor, and if she served, trained new warriors to his cause, she would serve at his right hand. So now, Darth Sley unleashed her force abilities to strike her foes with lightning, fire, frost and shadow, recklessly lashing out with the elemental energies. And despite her persistant and dangerous attacks, the Hunters eventually overcame her, and Darth Sley was consumed by the very elemental powers she had wielded.
The students surrendered without a fight, Jarn Organa using the force to propel their detonators back to destroy the Statue of the Noctis, and the prisoners were freed, the first ambassador was dead. But on the opposite side of the base, the Vizsla awaits, a dangerous splinter faction of Mandalorians at this command. He remains the only obstacle left in this mission, and then the Hunters need only escape the facility… and after first killing a Sith Lord and next killing a rogue Mandalorian, that will be the easy part… right?