Greetings, readers! We apologize for the delay, but today we’re back with Part 6 of our exclusive Star Wars fan-fiction story, I, Inquisitor. If you need to catch up, or want to continue on, you can read the other installments below:
- Prologue (Part 1)
- Part 2 – Bail Organa
- Part 3 – The Inquisitorious
- Shili – Part 4
- Part 5 – The Jedi
- Part 6 – Failure
- Mandalore – Part 7
- Part 8 – The Duchess
Part 6 picks up right where Part 5 left off – Shan Xi is dead, and the Jedi known as Jae Cal Onis prepares to face off against the Inquisitors. But in murdering Shan Xi, would they regret awakening a darkness from deep within the Jedi? Find out as Tavek Dinaar continues his tale in…
I, Inquisitor: Part 6
Now, Senator, before I begin to describe what transpired that day on Shili, I must tell you this: the Emperor’s plan, Order 66, worked to near perfection. Likewise, the result of the Inquisitor program cannot be understated. However, there was one thing that the Emperor could not have foreseen: the deleterious effect Order 66 would have on those Jedi that survived.
As staunch in their ways as the Jedi were as members of the Order, their steadfast resolve evaporated quickly without the Order on which to fall back. We’d even heard rumors of one Jedi in particular, Jedi Master Quinlan Vos (who I’d mentioned earlier), tracking down and eliminating other members of the Inquisitorius. The Emperor truly had destroyed the Jedi Order; many of its survivors devolved into the Dark Side. This Jedi we lured to Shili, Jae Cal Onis, was among those whose fall from grace was particularly deep.
Once Third Sister had murdered the Togruta female, a rage welled within the Jedi the likes of which I’d only every felt in two beings. The first was the Second Brother who’d trained me. The other, of course, was Darth Vader. Although, Lord Vader’s anger was… different. I can’t say that it was tempered, but rather it was… caged, like a rabid gundark waiting for release. But this fury, that of the Jedi that stood before us, this rivaled that of Vader.
This was pure, unadulterated, Dark Side rage.
With blinding speed, he charged. I don’t remember moving my feet, but I did so in unison with Third Sister as we stepped forward to meet our attacker. He leaped between us, spinning to strike Third Sister’s blade first before bringing a slash of his lightsaber down upon my own. Back and forth, thrust and parry, spin and strike. The Jedi leaped and bounded, his strength seeming to grow with each attack he made and with each blow he deflected from me or Third Sister.
Flashes of crimson and cobalt splayed and sparked, casting eerie hues and shadows across the facades of the nearby buildings we passed as we fought our way down the central avenue of the once-peaceful riverside hamlet. At one point the Jedi swept my legs from under me. It was only Third Sister’s reflexes in the Force that pulled me from beneath what would have been a fatal blow to my chest. Once back on my feet, my own hatred and anger flowed again, and I managed to strike a blow to the Jedi’s shoulder. The wound should have caused searing pain.
It was as if he hadn’t even noticed.
Still, the blow knocked him off balance, giving Third Sister the opening she needed. She moved in and flicked her wrist just so to pry the blue blade from the Jedi’s grasp. The lightsaber powered down immediately and landed with a thud and puff of dust three meters or so behind him. He stood defenseless, breathing heavily and piercing his hatred-filled gaze through Third Sister as if he’d thrust his blade. As one we moved together to finish him, but we’d not come close to delivering a fatal blow. The opportunity was not lost due to any failure of strategy, but rather one of fate.
We’d unleashed something in the Jedi, something dormant. Something dark that he’d hidden or suppressed for far too long. I could not approach the Jedi to strike: because the Force willed otherwise.
I noticed first that my feet had left the ground. Perhaps it was the surprise of the Jedi’s use of the tactic, or the ferocity with which he used it, that caused me to lose focus. Next, I dropped my saber. I’d not done so consciously, mind you. My hands instead reached to my collar as I felt the air leaving my lungs, my throat restricting. Again, the Jedi employed means of dominance and control I’d only ever seen used twice before:
By the Grand Inquisitor, and by Lord Vader.
Third Sister moved swiftly and hurled her spinning, twin blades towards him, more so to end the Jedi than to save my life. Her attempt was for naught. Without releasing his chokehold on me, he thrust his other hand towards the approaching blade and stopped it in mid-air with nothing but a thought. I could sense Third Sister’s fear in that moment. A fear, a terror she’d never before felt. And she knew.
She was about to meet her end.
The Jedi thrust me backwards with such force I nearly lost consciousness. In hindsight I likely did when the Jedi’s Force push hurled me into a stone pillar, cracking it through. My blade rested on the ground meters away from me, but I hadn’t the clarity or focus to call it to my hand. All I could do was watch. What unfolded before me was an extraordinary display of raw, Force power. Had Third Sister not been the victim of what would transpire next, I would have revered the Jedi’s skill and determination. Instead, Anger welled within me; a fury I could not quench.
The spinning red blade still hung in mid-air as the Jedi turned his attention back to Third Sister. She stood motionless, in awe. I could sense that she, like me, had never seen such strength in the Force aside from Lord Vader himself. Such was the power of the Dark Side; only when you surrender to the darkness can you experience the true power of the Force. At least that’s what I thought at that time. That was, of course, untrue. A lesson unlearned in my time as a Jedi padawan, and one that perhaps I would have learned had the Order continued.
But that lesson, as I am about to be, is but a memory.
I felt the word growing in my throat before it erupted from my lips. “NO!” I screamed as Third Sister regained her resolve and charged at our Jedi quarry. It would be her final act as an Inquisitor. She ran towards the Jedi with breakneck speed and leapt through the air, arcing up and over where her blade remained, hovering. As much as I witnessed it with my own eyes, so too did I sense and feel everything without believing that was happening. She reached for her blade as she passed through the air, and was about to grip it, when I could feel her emotions morph from determined wrath to terrified fright. She flew through the air past her blade, its hilt just out of reach.
She was helpless.
Loneliness. Fear. Vulnerability. All filled her mind as now she too found herself in the Jedi’s Force grasp. The whole event of her death lasted but seconds, though an eternity passed through my mind as I watched helplessly.
“You’ll never survive, Jedi. Lord Vader and the Grand Inquisitor will find you and the Emperor’s mandate will be fulfil—”
She’d not complete her last words. The Jedi called her blade to one hand as he simultaneously summoned his own to the other. The blades crossed and sparked as they severed Third Sister in two. Where I once felt her in the Force there remained only… emptiness. She was gone. The halves of her corpse fell to the ground at the Jedi’s feet.
An Inquisitor had fallen.
From him I immediately felt remorse, and sorrow. The realization that he’d succumbed to the Dark Side, acted out of anger and revenge, nearly overwhelmed him. But then the strangest thing happened. In an instant all of that fury and aggression dissipated from his being as if drawn out of him like mist drawn into the vacuum of space. Though regret remained, overwhelming peace and light enveloped him. I knew immediately that the Jedi would live and never again embrace the Dark Side as he had in those moments. Perhaps that was why he let me live. It felt almost as if he’d forgotten my presence entirely. He dropped Third Sister’s blade to the ground, returned the hilt of his to his belt, and gathered the remains of the Togruta female my fellow Inquisitor had murdered in order to draw the Jedi out in the first place. He wrapped her body in a rough sheet of cloth someone had brought him, and then walked away from me with the villagers in tow.
I was alone.
Finally released from the residual effects of the Jedi’s hold, I was able to regather myself and rise to my feet. I would not be forgotten long, and it was time to make my departure. I picked up Third Sister’s blade and made my way back to our TIE fighters without resistance. Even now the memories of that day remain clear to me; In my rear viewport I could see the other TIE self-destruct as I sped towards the upper atmosphere. I’d knew I’d never return to Shili. What I didn’t know was how, or whether, the Grand Inquisitor and Lord Vader would accept our failure there.
I’d soon find out.
Once back on board the Anlace, I immediately strode to the bridge. Captain Palleon addressed me, but I ignored him and instead commandeered his office to transmit my report to the Grand Inquisitor. At the time I did not expect to survive through to the end of the transmission. Surprisingly, however, The Grand Inquisitor listened to my whole account, stoically indifferent. When I finished, he let an awkward silence fill the void between us.
Finally, he turned from the holoprojector and stepped away without saying a word. I felt a fleeting sense of reprieve, on replaced quickly with dread.
Lord Vader stepped into view, replacing the Grand Inquisitor.
“Your failure is most disturbing,” the Dark Lord of the Sith said to me. I had no reply. The contempt in his voice seeped through the rasping of his breather. “Nevertheless, you are fortunate, Fourth Brother. With Third Sister gone, you must complete the next mission alone. Instruct Captain Palleon to deliver you to the coordinates I am about to transmit. You will receive further instructions en route.”
“Yes, Lord Vader,” I replied contritely.
“Do not fail me again, Inquisitor. I will not be so forgiving next time.”
Senator Organa paused the recording at Dinaar’s chilling description of Darth Vader. He’d heard the rumors of Vader, and his Inquisitors. But, now that he was privy to a first-hand account of their brutality, his fear for the people of the Republic-turned-Empire intensified ten-fold. A group of Dark Side Force-wielders scourging the galaxy unfettered certainly spelled doom for any hope of uniting what few Jedi remained. Thoughts turned to his friend in exile on Tatooine, and Bail Organa wondered if he’d ever see him again. He’d learn later, as he watched the remainder of Tavek Dinaar’s confession, the import the story the Inqusitor told would have on Organa’s relationship with former General of the Republic and Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi.
(To be continued…)
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The preceding is a work of fan fiction based upon and utilizing locations, characters, and/or plot points from the Star Wars universe, originally created by George Lucas and trademarked to Lucasfilm, Ltd. The author makes no claim whatsoever of ownership of the Star Wars name, characters represented, or the Star Wars universe generally. This work is created of the author’s own imagination and is intended for entertainment purposes only. It does not purport to be an “official” Star Wars story or part of existing Star Wars canon in any way. The author is not profiting financially in any way as the result of the creation or publication of this piece of fan fiction.