Star Wars - Enemies of the Outer Rim

The Everfree Forest

Clever Girl...

Despite the Seer‘s protests that the group would be wasting it’s time, the Hunters of the Noble Rose have decided to follow the directions leading to the last of the three temples built by the Jedi Master Celista, the so called Temple of Serenity. Located on the planet listed in the archives of the now deceased Pontifex as Turask, the temple was deep within a massive rain forest, which the Noble Rose could not penetrate. As such, the Hunters had to hike through the Jungle, cutting a path through the undergrowth.

Battling vicious native beasts, the group fought several large jungle cats, only to have those same cats become prey for even larger spider-like creatures that had been attracted by the sounds of fighting. Troika Nobrose Stared down one of the Arachnids and tamed it to fight for the group, enabling the party to win their way to a small clearing. Therein, a lone, strange looking alien warrior did battle with four powerful Gundarks. The Hunters assisted him, killing off the Gundarks and saving the warrior, who held some sort of mysterious awe for the Hunters, and especially for the Lightsaber held by Raxar Kun. Amidst his unknown language, two words were obvious, and repeated several times, ‘Jedi’ and ‘Republic’.

Following the warrior guide as he lead them through the Jungle, the Hunters arrived at the tribe’s village, hundreds of the aliens armored in bone and chitin, living armor and weaponry. At the center of the village was a massive altar, upon which sat an ancient deactivated protocol droid amidst piles of old technology. With a little technical know-how, Kith’ruin’du reactivated the Protocol droid, and the group learned that it had apparently been there over 1000 years, dating back to the time of the Old Republic. The Droid had been left to this tribe, along with scores of other equipment used in the construction of the Temple of Serenity, and the natives still held those soldiers and the Jedi who accompanied them as gods. The groups armor, as well as Raxar Kun’s lightsaber, placed them on the same pedestal as these mythical figures. And after a night of celebration and feasting, the natives of Turask guided the Hunters to the Temple the next morning.

Standing guard to the temple was a massive, immobile defense Droid, clearly designed to prevent entry to the Temple, but the natives had adapted war paints from Old Republic supplies, drawing rank insignias and identifying markers upon themselves, and the Hunters, allowing access to the Temple’s depths, but they would not enter themselves, only guiding the Hunter’s to the door, no further.

Inside, the temple opened up into a large antechamber, statues of Jedi surrounding the room, lined with five large, ornate doors. In the center was a single pedestal upon which the hilt of a lightsaber was partially submerged. Despite his best efforts, Rusong Lah could not free the blade, only succeeding in severely injuring himself. Activating the Holocron of the Jedi Celista, she confirmed that it was indeed her blade upon the pedestal, and that to obtain it, one need only reach out and take it. Raxar Kun finally deduced that it was a Force puzzle, requiring a small nudge with the force to free the lightsaber. The pedestal opened, releasing the hilt of the blade, and creating an opening into which the Holocron seemed to fit perfectly.

Placing the Holocron down, the temple came to life, and Celista took control, explaining to the Hunters that this temple, the Temple of Serenity was designed to test those who would face the Noctis by testing them in the virtues of the Jedi. The five rooms of the temple each contained one of the five trials a Padawan must face before achieving Knighthood, the Trials of Skill, Courage, Flesh, Insight, and Spirit.

In the Trial of Skill, the Hunters found themselves in a room similar to one within the Temple of Passing, where an elaborate illusion made the room appear to be floating in space, walls replaced with blackness and stars and constellations filling the endless expanses. There, they struggled to determine just what to do. Recognizing one constellation, they would suddenly find themselves moved through space into the constellation. Through their manipulations of the this room, they were able to seize control and move the map at will, but were unable to discover the room’s true purpose and reward.

In the Trial of Courage, the Holocron of Celista told them to succeed they needed to remove their weapons before entering and face their fears. The group complied, and entered the darkened room. Once inside, they heard a familiar laugh, as Swindle suddenly appeared, mocking the group’s ignorance, that the entire temple was an elaborate trap he had prepared. Coins appeared as well, ready to kill the group, as did the dread droid Lekad, and most horrifically, the one-time Sith Lord Paxis, who had discovered the secrets to immortality. And in a moment of raw horror, Lieutenant Martell faced the most terrifying thing of all, the monstrously cute Fluttershy. Recognizing them as illusions of some type, and understanding the nature of the trial, Rusong Lah, Raxar Kun, and Lieutenant Martell embraced their fears, hugging the Droid, vowing to stand against Paxis, and loving the Pony. Troika Nobrose battled against Swindle, refusing to give ground and falling in combat, but awakened as if it were a dream, passing the test as well by refusing to retreat. However, Kith’ruin’du fled the room, self-preservation coming first, but causing him to fail the trial…

Lastly, the Hunters entered the Trial of Insight, in which they only needed to meditate and allow the Temple to grant them a vision, a vision of their fate, and the fate of everything, should they fail. The group nearly all shared their visions, connecting the common themes, death, an unknown voice, inconceivable whispers, a gargantuan shadow spreading out across the universe, as well as more personal visions. Lieutenant Martell saw his brother, encased in metal, and fleets of ships falling from the sky against the shadow. Raxar Kun saw a vision of Revan defeating the shadow, but falling in the process and blaming him. Troika Nobrose saw the death of Mandalore the Infinite at the hands of [[:swindle}] once again, and the shattering of the Mandalorians. Rusong Lah saw the gates to hell, glimpsing his god the Ganner, but found himself unable to fight the Darkness as his companions were slaughtered, and found himself torn apart dishonorably by the darkness. What Kith’ruin’du saw, none can say, as the Chiss kept quiet about his vision, either deeply disturbed or deeply secretive, or both…

The Hunters have adequately completed three trials, and now, Only two trials remain, the trials of Flesh and Spirit. Should the group prove themselves in these final two trials, the secrets of the Temple of Serenity will be open to them. The truth of the Noctis, the truth of the Jedi Celista, and the second Star of the Noctis will be in their possession as they make preparations for the confrontation with the Augur and for the horrors that will eventually come from the ominous Black Moon glimpsed within the trials…

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