- "...I never married, of course."
"There's a shock. Who could live with a Sith? I'm amazed there are any humans left on Kesh."
"I wonder about that, too! I tend to prefer building things to the company of others."
- ―Edell Vrai and Quarra Thayn discussing the former's marital status and hobbies
Edell Vrai was a Human male who was a member of the Golden Destiny faction in 3000 BBY. The then-Caretaker Varner Hilts regarded him as being one of the most forward-looking members of the Golden Destiny. He later became a High Lord during the Hilts Restoration. He grew up on the planet Kesh during the Time of the Rot, a period of civil warfare and turmoil within the Lost Tribe of Sith which lasted over 960 years. During that year's Testament Day, the Sith factions learnt that the Tribe's ancestors were not "great conquerors" but were rather slaves of the Sith Lord Naga Sadow. This revelation sparked the Great Crisis which led to much bloodletting among the Tribe and threatened its very existence. He and the other Sith factions then joined forces in an attempt to destroy the ancient Sith starship Omen which they regarded as a memory of their "inglorious past."
However, the Caretaker Varner Hilts succeeded in uniting the other Sith by showing them the secret maps of the Tribe's founder Yaru Korsin which revealed the existence of another, inhabited continent on Kesh. Edell and the other Sith leaders including Korsin Bentado, Neera and Iliana Merko subsequently elected Hilts as their new Grand Lord. Due to his skills as a mathematician, Edell later became the Tribe's chief engineer and was tasked with finding a way for the Tribe to travel across the ocean to the continent. He invented hydrogen-based airships pulled by uvaks, and the Sith built more than sixty such vessels to form the Ebon Fleet. Edell subsequently became one of the seven High Lords which ruled the Tribe.
In 2975 BBY, Edell pioneered the first reconnaissance party in three such ships: the Candra, the Lillia, and the Dann Itra. The ship's mission was to fly across the eastern ocean and conduct an aerial reconnaissance mission over "Keshtah Major" before returning to Keshtah across the smaller eastern ocean. However, these ships were shot down by Alanciari Keshiri ballistae and diamond-flak uvak teams close to the western coast of Alanciar. Despite the loss of his airships, Edell managed to escape with a small party of Sith Warriors.
They encountered the Keshiri woman Quarra Thayn and her lover Jogan Halder, whom they took hostage. After commandeering the fishing ship Mischance, Edell managed to coerce Quarra into working as a guide across the continent to the city of Sus'mintri, the headquarters of the Alanciari military government known as the War Cabinet. In return, Edell agreed to Thayn's request to attend to the wounds of Jogan Halder. The two subsequently traveled through Alanciar and came to develop a reluctant friendship. Meanwhile, Edell's remaining crew returned with Jogan in the captured Mischacne to Keshtah.
Meanwhile, Edell' rival High Lord Bentado launched a full-scale invasion of Alanciar but his force was also wiped out by the Alanciari ballistae. Edell and Quarra subsequently reached Sus'mintri after some delays. There, they discovered that Bentado and his surviving followers had infiltrated the War Cabinet's headquarters and wiped out the entire Alanciari military leadership. Having decapitated the Alanciari government, Bentado then attempted to take over the continent and to create a "Second Tribe" by killing Grand Lord Hilts, who was scheduled to visit Alanciar in an airship. However, Edell and Thayn managed to foil Bentado's plans with the help of the rival High Lord's Keshiri assistant Squab, who personally executed Bentado.
Ultimately, Hilts managed to take control of Alanciar after using the Alanciari sentry Jogan Halder to convince them that the Sith did not pose a threat to them. Instead, he claimed that the Tribe were the legendary Protectors and that Adari Vaal, the ancient "Rock of Kesh", had been a well-meaning albeit misguided servant of the Bright Tuash, an avian Keshiri deity. Meanwhile, Bentado was portrayed as a servant of the malevolent Destructors whom the Tribe was fighting against. Grand Lord Hilts, who had disguised himself as the Bright Tuash, then supported Halder's message. According to the "Bright Tuash," Edell was a secret agent of the Protectors who together with the well-trained Keshiri soldier Quarra had defeated Bentado. Following the conquest of Alanciar, Edell became the de-facto governor of Alanciar.
- "It sickens me. This—this thing [Omen]—is nothing but a carrier for chattel!"
- ―Edell Vrai's first reaction to seeing the Omen, something which he had been fascinated with prior to the Great Crisis
Edell Vrai grew up during the Time of the Rot, a millennium of chaos and anarchy which destabilized the Lost Tribe of Sith and the continent of Keshtah Minor, which they had ruled since the arrival of the Tribe's Sith ancestors during the Great Hyperspace War in 5000 BBY. Since the death of the reigning Grand Lord Lillia Venn in 3960 BBY, several Sith factions had fought for the right to control the Grand Lordship and the Tribe's capital city of Tahv. As a result of this conflict, much of Keshtah had fallen into ruins and lawlessness. Prior to 2975 BBY, Edell joined the Golden Destiny, a faction which was obsessed with the stellar aspects of the Tribe's origins. Edell believed that the Tribe's founder Yaru Korsin was a "great conqueror" and that the Tribe's ancestors had been part of a powerful people. Since the Tribe had not intended to come to the planet Kesh, the Golden Destiny believed that the Sith factions should stop fighting, reopen the mountainside temple, and return to the stars.
While Edell Vrai was a warrior, he was also a skilled mathematician and engineer. He was fascinated with Korsin-era architecture and the Omen, the ancient Sith dreadnaught which had brought the Tribe's ancestors to Kesh. Due to his interests in the Tribe's history, Edell was one of the few regular visitors to the museum in Tahv, which was located near the capitol building that housed the Office of the Caretaker Varner Hilts. As a member of the Golden Destiny, Edell wore a golden uniform. The Golden Destiny had a hostile relationship with the other Sith factions particularly the Korsinite League, led by Korsin Bentado, which revered the Testament of Yaru Korsin as a holy text. While Edell and other members of the Golden Destiny respected that document, they disagreed with the Korsinite view that the Tribe had to strictly adhere to Korsin's political structure and instead believed that the Tribe should focus more on returning to the stars.
The Great CrisisEdit
- "I know just how to do it, too. One last act of cooperation. We will succeed."
- ―Edell Vrai, leading the "demolition project"
In 3000 BBY, the Golden Destiny and the other Sith factions congregated in Tahv for the scheduled reading of Yaru Korsin's Testament, which was read every twenty-five years to the leaders of the Tribe. Earlier, there had been tensions between three other factions—the Sisters of Seelah, Force 57, and the Korsinite League—after Iliana Merko, the leader of the Sisters, occupied the Kesh capitol building during an attempt to present a fake Testament that would favor their deity Seelah Korsin and those who followed her teachings. Caretaker Varner Hilts and his Keshiri aide Jaye Vuhld were able to calm the tensions by offering to do a reading of the Testament. Hilts was able to legally convene the Pantheon's Peace after Jaye revealed that the Keshiri calendar was actually eight days behind the Galactic Standard Calendar. Edell was not present at the Pantheon's Peace since only leaders were permitted to attend. Instead, the leader of the Golden Destiny attended on behalf of his faction.
While the Testament was unable to minimize the tensions between the various Sith factions, Hilts discovered that Yaru had recorded his Testametn over an older communications recording which turned out to be a message from the Sith Lord Naga Sadow to his slave Captain Yaru Korsin. The Sith faction leaders quickly learnt that the Tribe's ancestors had not been "great conquerors" or gods but had actually been slaves to Naga Sadow. The Omen had crash-landed on Kesh while delivering Lignan ores to Sith Empire forces on Kirrek. Korsin and the Tribe had stayed on Kesh because Korsin was unwilling to return and face his wrathful Master who did not tolerate failure. This revelation immediately discredited the Tribe's myth that they were the Protectors, powerful gods in Keshiri mythology. As a result of this revelation, the Tribe was driven into a homicidal madness and the various factions began killing each other before fighting among themselves. As a result of the fighting, many of Keshtah's cities were razed in what was later remembered as the "Great Crisis."
Edell Vrai and his fellow Golden Destiny fought the other Sith factions. After two weeks of bloodshed, the various Sith factions decided to end their fighting and instead combine their manpower and energy to destroy the last relic of the Tribe's inglorious past: the Omen, which was housed beneath the Sith temple in the Takara Mountains. Edell led the Tribe's efforts to destroy the Omen and managed to secure the help of several of his former adversaries including the Korsinite leader Korsin Bentado, the Force 57 leader Neera, and several of Iliana's former Sisters. Many of these Sith factions had initially travelled to the Sith Temple with the intention of hunting down and killing Iliana Merko, the former Chief Sister who had inflicted several injuries on them. However, they decided to support Edell's "demolition" project.
Prior to his planned demolition, Edell and seven other Sith including Bentado visited the underground tomb which housed the Omen. While touring the Omen, Edell justified his motivations on the grounds that the Omen had been nothing but a "carrier of chattel." Likewise, Bentado described the starship as the cause of the Tribe's imprisonment on Kesh and an "omen of despair." Despite his earlier fascination with Korsin-era architecture and the Omen, Edell agreed with Bentado's assessment that the starship had to be destroyed. While Bentado believed that the Tribe was destined to annihilation, he believed that the destruction of the Omen would provide a common cause for the Tribe to rally in hatred against their predestined fate.
Due to his expertise in mathematics and engineering, Edell was made the chief project officer of this demolition project which included thirty Sith warriors from various factions and several uvak, winged reptilian beasts of burden. The Sith participants came from various factions including Force 57 and the Sisters of Seelah. Despite their earlier differences, they were willing to work together for a common cause: destroying the last relic of their "inglorious past." For this demolition project, Edell planned to topple the temple's giant watchtower onto the chamber containing the Omen, crushing the ship. Edell got the Sith warriors to loop long leather cables around the supports of the watchtower. Several teams of Sith on the ground and uvaks in the air then worked simultaneously to lower the building. While the chamber below was well constructed, Edell was confident that it would crack like an "uvak egg" under a hammer. While the resulting impact of the tower may not have blown up the ship, it would have buried it completely.
- "This isn't the end. This isn't the end!"
"No. The end already happened. We just didn't know it."
- ―Varner Hilts trying to reason with Edell Vrai
However, Edell's demolition project did not reach its fruition. There was another expedition in the Sith Temple that consisted of Varner Hilts, Jaye Vuhld, and Iliana Merko. These three explorers wanted to explore the Temple and find Yaru Korsin's secrets, which he had mentioned in his Testament. In desperation, Hilts believed could save the Tribe from its downward spiral of destruction. Edell and Bentado's deconstruction team discovered Hilts' party after Hilts had sent Jaye to obtain glowrods for them to examine a secret map room on the seventh step of the stairway leading to the temple. During this brief confrontation, Bentado murdered Jaye. The Sith party, which included Edell and several of his Golden Destiny companions, then stumbled on Hilts and Iliana, who had discovered Korsin's secret room. Bentado and Neera wanted to kill Iliana as retribution for the wounds and disfigurements she had inflicted on them. However, Iliana was unmoved by their threats and challenged them to finish the fight once and for all.
However, the Sith were stopped by Hilts who demanded to know who had murdered Jaye, his best friend. However, Jaye's murderer Bentado was unrepentant and tried to justify his actions on the grounds that Jaye was a Keshiri and that his presence "profaned" the temple. When Hilts reprimanded the Sith for trying to destroy the temple which the Keshiri had helped build in the first place, Neera responded that all life was "profane". She cited the "alien masters" of the Tribe's forebears as an example of how disgusting life could be. Edell, the most moderate and conciliatory member of the Sith party, attempted to reason with Hilts by telling him that everything they had known about the Tribe was a lie and that there was no sense in clinging to ancient sites like the Sith Temple since it contributed to infighting among the Tribe. In response, Hilts argued that the Tribe was not doomed but Edell did not see his point and instead argued that the end had already happened but that the Tribe did not know it. These Sith then closed in on Iliana, whom they regarded as the more dangerous of their prey.
In an attempt to diffuse the situation and to prevent further bloodshed, Hilts used the Force to yank off the stone panels covering the map in that chamber. This revealed the existence of a second continent known as Alanciar or Keshtah Major. Edell was the first to respond and asked Hilts what it was. Hilts responded that the object was a map of the rest of the world. After explaining the significance of his discovery for the Tribe, Hilts read a message from Yaru to his daughter Nida Korsin, which argued that this hidden knowledge was a cause that could one day be used to reunite the Tribe. As the Caretaker turned back, the various Sith warriors began using their light sabers to illuminate the inscriptions on the wall, which were written in the Tapani language. When Edell asked Hilts about the writing, a Hilts replied that these inscriptions had been carved into the wall with a diamond stylus by none other than Kirsin himself. After reciting the wall inscriptions, Hilts proceeded to read a letter from Yaru's mother Takara Korsin to her son Yaru Korsin, where the former prophesied that their descendants would one day rule a "great people" and be free of the Red Sith. Both of these texts were in the Tapani language, a tongue which had been forgotten by the contemporary descendants of the Tribe. When Bentado asked if there were any guides to this ancient language, Hilts responded that there had been guides until his archives were destroyed during the Great Crisis. Hilts then emphasized that he was the only person in the Tribe who knew the "old tongue."
Caretaker Hilts then successfully convinced the other Sith to end the fighting by arguing that the Tribe should abandon their internal infighting and pool their energies and resources into conquering this new continent. He described this new project as the biggest thing the Tribe's society had ever undertaken and reiterated that they needed everyone. Hilts also explained that Yaru Korsin had concealed Alanciar's existence since he had intended to use it as a "cause" to give his descendants a new sense of purpose. The Caretaker also reiterated that this endeavor would require order and discipline as in the "days of old". The various Sith were moved by Hilts' speech and quickly submitted to him.
Edell Vrai was the first to deactivate his lightsaber and kneel before Hilts. He vowed that the Tribe would "craft" their society again according to the "old ways". He praised Hilts for his knowledge of the "old tongue" and "old ways" and blessed him as someone who would guide their people well. Edell's fellow Golden Destiny comrades also followed suit and bowed before the new Grand Lord. Shortly later, Korsin Bentado nodded and bowed to his knees. He praised Hilts for redeeming the Tribe's faith in Korsin. Thirdly, Neera also knelt and praised him for finding a path that was wide enough for all the Sith to follow and placed all her trust in him. Finally, the various Sith elected Varner Hilts as their new Grand Lord, a position which had been hotly contested within the Tribe for almost a millennium. This marked the beginning of a new era in the Tribe's history known as the Hilts Restoration.
In the end, Iliana was the only person left standing in the map room. While she was initially jealous that Hilts had beaten her in the race for the Tribe's leadership, the new Grand Lord defused the situation by asking Iliana to become his wife, making her his Grand Consort. This would enable Iliana to share his power while giving her protection from the other Sith who still sought retribution against her. Shortly, later the couple were married at the mountainside Sith Temple on the last day of the Festival of Nida's Rise. Meanwhile, Edell along with several other Sith leaders including Bentado and Neera travelled throughout mainland Keshtah Minor, bringing with them the good news that the Tribe's governing system would be restored and set towards a new goal: reaching the continent of Keshtah Major, which lay across the Endless Sea.
A New GoalEdit
- "You are the Caretaker. You alone know the old tongue—and you know the old ways better than anyone. You will guide our people well."
- ―Edell Vrai submitting to Varner Hilts as Grand Lord
Due to his expertise in mathematics and engineering, Edell Vrai was designated by Grand Lord Hilts as the new chief engineer for the Tribe's efforts to reach "Keshtah Major." Edell was tasked with developing a way for the Tribe to travel to and back from the new continent. He vowed to attack the problem vigorously and to study ways for the Tribe to reach distances greater than any uvak or watercraft ever had. For the Tribe and the Keshiri living on Keshtah Minor, Keshtah Minor was the only known world for them. Hilts also hypothesized that Adari Vaal might have successfully traveled to the new continent with her flight of stolen uvak, and that the residents would thus know that the Sith existed. For the next twenty five years, Edell oversaw the Tribe's efforts to reach Keshtah Major. The Tribe initially experimented with long-distance flights by uvak, winged reptilian beasts that were regarded as a status symbol in Keshtah Minor.
However, the uvak were unable to travel for long distances. Keshtah Minor was surrounded by seas in all directions and there were few islands that could serve as resting places. For millennia, no riders had ever crossed the Endless Sea and returned to report their travels. Based on their limited knowledge of geography and space, the Sith knew that the planet Kesh was a globe as did the Keshiri, who had figured that fact out on their own. Based on Yaru Korsin's map, the Tribe knew that there were two ocean routes to Keshtah Major. While the western Sea of Flames was shorter, it fought the currents. Thus, the Tribe was forced to settle for the longer Endless Sea. Following the failure of the uvak long distance flights, Edell experimented with boats which also met with failure. The plentiful hejarbo shoots, which were used to build houses, were unable to withstand water currents. Hardwoods from the interior like, vosso, were too dense to float while other species were too rubbery.
By the second decade of his research, Edell had spent endless hours researching those materials in an attempt to find something that would make the trip possible. Due to successive failed efforts, many of his aides grew frustrated with him and became rivals, experimenting with their own plans. While Hilts promoted Edell to the position of High Lord to afford him with full access to resources, Edell had little interest in court politics or starting a family. Due to his fascination with finding a way to reach Keshtah Major, Edell never married and produced children. Finally, Edell discovered a solution in 2978 BBY; the volcano Sessal Spire emitted various noxious gases including methane. Edell and his team used glass vessels to extract the methane and then used a simple water catalyst to isolate the hydrogen, the lightest element known to the Tribe.
Due to the success of these experiments, Edell established a production line to build structures that the gas could carry afloat. Thus, Edell became the inventor of the Tribe's airships. The Keshiri artisans were able to develop a thin containment fabric which stiffened against pressure; and these became known as gasbags. Edell's "rising bell" shape became the most stable gas bag, which attached to a gondola that was crafted with several layers of latticed hejarbo. These gondolas were used to carry the crew and their provisions. However, Edell's engineering team then encountered another problem. The airships lacked a means of controlling direction which caused the winds to blow them in various directions. Several riders and their aircraft were killed or disappeared on these test flights, with some presumably ending up in the South Pole and the others drowning in the equatorial ocean farther north.
In 2975 BBY, the Tribe discovered that they could use uvak as a means of controlling direction and propulsion. These uvak were attached to the airships' gondolas where they could rest, eat, and even sleep when their services were not needed. That same year, Edell Vrai gained permission from his liege Grand Lord Hilts and his wife Iliana to lead a reconnaissance mission to "Keshtah Major". This expedition consisted of three scouting airships: the Candra, Lillia, and the Dann Itra which were named after several historical figures from the Time of the Rot. Each of these airships were capable of carrying ten crew members and were propelled by two uvak. Edell served as the commander of the mission and the captain of the Candra. Edell's plan was to sail across the Endless Sea to scout the new continent and then return to Keshtah Minor by the Sea of Flames. Korsin Bentado, who was now a High Lord, was designated as the leader of the invasion force—a fleet of sixty airships known as the Ebon Fleet. Edell made an agreement with Bentado that the latter was to only invade the new continent after Edell had returned.
- "Warriors port and starboard! Prepare to deflect fire. No lightsabers—use the Force!"
- ―Edell Vrai during the skirmish above Garrow's Neck
After three days of flying, Edell's scouting fleet reached the southern fringes of "Keshtah Major". Upon arriving, the Candra's thoughtcrier Taymor sensed that there was a lot of energy and emotions in the new continent, confirming that it was already populated. She also sent a thought impression indicating that the Sith had discovered the new continent. Unknown to the Sith, this new continent was already home to a Keshiri civilization who called themselves the Alanciari and their homeland Alanciar. Two thousand years ago, the Keshiri Herald Adari Vaal and three-hundred followers had fled to Alanciar on their uvak. After landing on an offshore island, they were picked up by the Alanciari. Adari succeeded in warning the Alanciari about the threat posed by the Sith in Keshtah Minor and became a highly-respected figure in Alanciari society. As a result, the Alanciari evolved into a highly disciplined and militaristic society that was dedicated to resisting any invasion by the Sith. The Alanciari maintained a strong military that was augmented by a highly complex network of signal stations and thoughtcriers, Force-sensitive individuals who were trained to send messages by thought projection. In addition, Alanciar had a well-run system of roads, canals, and a well-organized bureaucracy.
Edell's airships flew over Garrow's Neck, one of the six peninsulas that made up the Six Claws, Alanciar's southern coastal region which faced the Endless Sea, which they called the Western Sea. Unfortunately for the Sith, Garrow's Neck had a signal station called Point Defiance, which was staffed by the Alanciari signal officer Jogan Halder and his secret lover Quarra Thayn, who had pretended to be his relief thoughtcrier. These two spotted the Sith airships and quickly raised the alarm. Within minutes, the Candra's sister airships the Lillia and Dann Itra were destroyed by flaming projectiles which ignited their hydrogen gasbags, killing all hands aboard. These projectiles were fired by a large ballista based at Point Vigilance, which lay to the north of Garrow's Neck. Besides sensing the death of fellow Sith, Edell also realized that the enemy had used the Force to guide their projectiles. Edell quickly realized that the Sith had made contact with the natives but that the natives this time were stronger.
To stay out of the range of the ballistae, Edell ordered his crew to dump provisions. Edell had realized that the fortification below the harbor was armed with ballistae but that these had limited range. Edell then ordered his thoughtcrier Taymor to send an alarm warning the Tribe that the expedition had encountered trouble. However, she was killed by several diamond flak projectiles before she could finish sending the message. The only message that the Grand Consort Iliana's thoughtcriers received was a garbled message of surprise, shock, and confusion. Edell then saw that these projectiles had come from three Alanciari uvak-riders who were armed with hand-ballistae. These were part of the Alanciari air force and they began to pursue and strafe the Candra. The Candra's two uvak were hit and one of them, known as Starboard, crash landed on Jogan, who had left his post to help Quarra leave the battlefield unseen since she was not officially supposed to be there.
The Alanciari uvak-riders also damaged the Candra's gasbag, causing it to leak out hydrogen. With the airship descending, Vrai attempted to deflate the ship while the other Sith crew fought off the attackers. While two of the enemy uvak-riders parried with the defenders, a third uvak-rider dived headlong towards the gondola. This suicide attack shattered the forward section of the Candra, causing the gondola to break apart. One of the warriors and a Keshiri ambassador fell to their deaths during this attack. What remained of the Candra hurled downwards to the ground with balloon dragging its crew and the gondola beneath it. Edell also ordered his crew to bail out of the ship and these survived by clinging to pieces of the ship's gondola. The Candra's crew landed in the harbor to the north of Garrow's Neck and managed to swim ashore. During the fall, Edell fell unconscious and had a nightmare.
In his nightmare, Edell dreamed that he had returned to the Sith capitol building in Tahv where he found that he was no longer welcome by the other Sith Lords and Sabers. The Sith Lords instead dispatched a junior Sith Tyro to meet Edell. This Tyro informed Edell that the Tribe had already learnt about his "first contact" with Keshtah Major and that he had outlived his usefulness because the conquest was well underway. Edell was surprised to learn that the Sith had attacked so early and attempted to warn them about the local Keshiri. However, the Tyro blocked his view of the table containing the map of Keshtah Major and told him that his services were no longer needed. The Tyro told Edell that he was not a "true Sith" because he was merely a tinkerer. After the Tyro told him that he did not belong to the Tribe, Edell was then dragged out of the building by two Sith guards.
Meeting the NativesEdit
- "Don't touch him, you filthy Sith!"
W-what did you say?"
"I said, don't touch him, you—"
"I heard what you said. I'm just surprised to hear you say it."
- ―Quarra Thayn's first conversation with Edell
When Edell awoke, he found himself lying on the shores of Garrow's Neck. He realized that it had been just a dream but he was still troubled about returning to Keshtah. Edell quickly found that four other crew members—the pilot Peppin, the two Sith Sabers Ulbrick and Janns, and the Keshiri scholar Tellpah had survived. Meanwhile, the remains of the Candra crashed a kilometer to the northeast where they were still burning in the water. Edell and the surviving Sith had dropped north of the signal station Point Defiance while the balloon carried the wreckage of the gondola farther east. They managed to evade Alanciari search parties which were scanning the northern shore across the party. Vrai ordered his party to climb the western summit where there sat a tall white tower which was ringed with a high white wall. This structure turned out to be Point Defiance which had been where Jogan and Quarra had been staying on the night of the attack.
Upon reaching the top, Ulbrick was wounded in the thigh by glass projectiles fired from an exotic weapon, later revealed to be a hand-ballista. The gunner turned out to be Quarra Thayn, who had spotted the Sith survivors. The enemy gunner spotted Edell and attempted to shoot him but the High Lord managed to dodge her glass projectiles. Edell then used the Force to throw sand at Quarra, jamming her hand-ballista. Edell then reached for his shikkar blade but his attacker used the Force to throw him to the ground, causing the High Lord to lose his blade. Quarra then attempted to wrestle the blade from Edell. However, Edell was able to tap into her emotions and use them to launch a psychic attack against Quarra, causing her to fall backwards and lose her grip on the shikkar. Edell's Sith comrades Peppin and Janns then wrestled and tackled Quarra.
This confrontation marked the first contact between a Sith and an Alanciari Keshiri. Edell observed that his Keshiri opponent had a wider face and wider-set eyes than the Alanciari in Keshtah. He also noted that the Alanciari woman was around his age and that she wore a leather vest, a garment that was still unknown to the Lost Tribe. Edell also saw the dead uvak Starboard lying nearby an incapacitated Keshiri man, who turned out to be her lover Jogan Halder. Edell ordered his Keshiri servant Tellpah to attend to Ulbrick's wounds while he went and killed the wounded Keshiri man. Before he could carry out his act, Edell was interrupted by the Alanciari woman who spoke in Galactic Basic Standard, warning him not to touch Jogan. Edell was surprised that she spoke the same language as him and quickly realized that the Keshiri living in "Keshtah Major" spoke the same language as the Tribe.
Quarra then made eye contact with Edell's lieutenant Peppin and told her to release her. Edell then noted that the Keshiri in "Keshtah Major", which the Alanciari called Alanciar, knew how to use the Force. He also studied Quarra's wooden ballista gun, which was a technology that was unknown to the Tribe. Quarra then told the Sith leader that the Alanciari had prepared for their invasion. In response, Edell expressed surprise and asked her how her people knew about them. He also asked her if anyone else was in the compound. In an attempt to intimidate the Sith, Quarra claimed that there was an entire detachment at Point Defiance but Edell quickly realized she was lying. Despite Quarra's Force abilities, Edell realized that she was untrained and thus he was able to break through her mental defenses.
He quickly discovered that she was named Quarra and that she was alone. In response, Quarra glowered at her captor and trembled upon learning that he had the ability to read minds. Meanwhile, the wounded Jogan started coughing, which was a sign that he had woken up. Edell recognized that Quarra did not want Jogan to die and instead ordered his men to take the two Alanciari as prisoners into the tower. Quarra then warned the Sith to be careful with him since their "blasted" uvak had landed on him and broken his ribs. In response, Edell retorted that the Alanciari had brought the creature down on themselves and that they were about to bring "a lot more on themselves." As she was being led inside by her captors, Quarra taunted Edell by pointing out that the Sith invaders would never get past the Alanciari defenses. In response, Edell retorted that the Sith would succeed since the gate had already been left open for them.
Edell realized that it would take two Sith to carry the bulk injured Jogan. He then returned to the wounded Saber Ulbrick, whose right leg had many splinters from Quarra's ballista. The Keshiri servant Tellpah had applied a makeshift bandage but this had failed to stem the bleeding. Since the Sith had to travel quickly, Edell wanted to evacuate all the Sith survivors from Point Defiance and to prevent any of his men from falling into the hands of the Alanciari. When Edell asked if Ulbrick could walk, the young Sith warrior admitted that he could only walk with great difficulty. Edell then looked at the warrior and then turned back towards Quarra, who was behind him. He smiled at her and then spun round, beheading Ulbrick with his lightsaber. While Tellpah managed to avoid Edell's stroke, his clothes were soiled in blood.
Edell then ordered Tellpah to hide Ulbrick's body. When Quarra expressed her revulsion that the High Lord would kill one of his own comrades, Edell reminded her not to forget that he could kill her if she failed to comply with her captors. Edell then ordered his subordinates to put the wounded Jogan downstairs while he examined Point Defiance. Peppin reminded her commander that they had to move quickly since Alanciari reinforcements from the Garrow's Neck fort were approaching them. Edell then ordered his men to bind Quarra and bring her upstairs since she might be able to help them find what they were looking for. Having secured Point Defiance, Edell and Tellpah then rummaged through the signal station's belfry, looking for manuals that could help them operate the fort's semaphore machine. However, they proved unsuccessful with this task.
Shortly later, Edell's Sith party was joined by two more Human warriors who had survived the Candra's crash-landing. The captive Quarra was shocked to see the Keshiri Tellpah serving the Sith and quickly realized that he had come from Keshtah Minor. Quarra attempted to encourage Tellpah to mutiny against his master by telling him that the Keshiri in Alanciar were free. However, Tellpah stared at her blankly since he was unable to comprehend the notion of the Keshiri being the masters of themselves. In response, Edell ordered Tellpah to ignore the Alanciari woman and to resume his job of finding the proper signal to send. With Tellpah being unable to find a way to operate the semaphore machine, Quarra offered to show them how to send the "all-clear" code. However, Edell did not trust her since he feared that she would alert the other Alanciari to their presence.
Unable to operate the semaphore machine, Edell smashed the stand containing the signal cylinders against the stone wall in frustration, destroying them. Edell and Tellpah then walked out onto the balcony where they spotted a ship in the horizon. Edell decided that the six surviving Sith would hijack the ship and then use it to return to Keshtah. Edell ordered Tellpah to bring Quarra downstairs into Jogan's room, where he had been dumped by his Sith captors. He and his men then began collecting the books and scrolls in Jogan Halder's private library, which they intended to use to provide the Tribe with information on the Alanciari and their continent. One valuable find was Adari Vaal's popular Alanciari history book the Keshtah Chronicles, which detailed everything that she knew about the Sith Tribe and Keshtah. After completing their search, Edell Vrai and his men picked up Quarra and Jogan; telling that the Sith had found a boat and that they were about to take a trip.
Finding a GuideEdit
- "...on the condition that you untie Jogan from that mast. There are bunks in the cabin. Let him lie down. You keep knocking him around, you're going to kill him."
"I can be reasonable. Move him."
- ―Quarra and Edell sealing their arrangement
Edell and his Sith party along with their prisoners Quarra and Jogan managed to evacuate Point Defiance moments before Alanciari reinforcements from the Garrow's Neck fort arrived at the signal station. Prior to their departure, Ulbrick's corpse was also dumped into a deep cistern.After finding a boat nearby, Edell and the Sith crew rowed towards the Alanciari ship which turned out to be a fishing trawler called Mischance. The Sith party only briefly delayed to move Quarra and her companion Jogan aboard as prisoners. However, Edell needed a guide and he was able to use Jogan, whom he assumed to be her spouse, as leverage. Like all Alanciari sea vessels, it relied on sails which trapped the wind in order to propel the ship. While most of the Alanciari harvester fleet usually worked in the Coral Banks of the Southern Passage, ship captains who were behind in harvesting their quotas of seafood were known to cut corners by fishing in the Western Sea, which was a restricted military zone that was patrolled by the Shore Guard, the Alanciari coast guard.
While the Keshiri sailors aboard the Mischance had been unaware of the earlier battle and were taken by surprise, they fought fiercely against the Sith invaders. It took the Sith until dawn to secure the Mischance and all of the Keshiri crew fought to the death. The Sith managed to capture one Keshiri sailor who was then interrogated by Edell's lieutenant Peppin. However, he refused to disclose any information even under torture and succumbed to his wounds. Due to their experiences on the previous night, Edell and Peppin noted the strong martial tradition among the Keshiri they had encountered on Alanciar. While the Mischance was a lowly harvester by Alanciari standards, it was considered to be advanced by the Tribe's standards since they had never built anything larger than a boat. Unlike Alanciar, the Sith continent of Keshtah's tree species, the hejarbo shoots and vosso tree, were completely unsuitable for building seagoing vessels. Peppin speculated that the Mischance could comfortably transport 200 Sith warriors.
After analyzing the Keshiri maps aboard the Mischance, Edell and Peppin planned to used the captured Mischance to sail back to Keshtah through the Southern Passage which led into the Sea of Flames. As part of the Sith Tribe's invasion plan, Edell's mission had been to conduct a reconnaissance probe before returning to Keshtah. Bentado would then lead an invasion force of airships known as the Ebon Fleet. Edell then claimed that he had new orders and convinced Peppin to help him. He turned his attention towards Quarra Thayn and Jogan Halder, who had been tied to the ship's mast. While Edell knew nothing of the male prisoner, he realized that Quarra was someone who was important among the Alanciari based on her documents and her demeanor. Edell also learnt that the natives called their continent Alanciar. He knew that Quarra knew how the Alanciari signal stations and their weapons worked.
Thus, Edell decided to employ Quarra's services as a guide for his reconnaissance mission into Alanciar's interior and its capital Sus'mintri. Edell wanted to find out more about Alanciar's military government, the War Cabinet, in order to provide the Sith Tribe with more intelligence on Alanciar. His Sith subordinates had also obtained a map of Alanciar which showed that there was a cove to the northeast of Garrow's Neck called Meori Cove, which was not under military surveillance. Edell's decision was also influenced by his recent nightmare about being marginalized or even excluded from the Tribe. Having made up his mind, Edell then initiated a meeting with Quarra. At first, the High Lord expressed his disappointment that the "first meeting" between the Sith and the Alanciari had not gone well because the latter had not provided their neighbors with a proper welcome. Quarra retorted "that was too bad."
After briefly mentioning reparations, Edell told her about the reason for his meeting: his planned reconnaissance foray into Alanciar. After displaying a map, Edell explained that his plan was to land at Meori Cove before traveling to Sus'mintri, a journey he estimated would take several days. He also told her that the Mischance would remain off the coast of Garrow's Neck until Edell signaled from the mountains that he had returned. Quarra was initially unwilling to cooperate until Edell threatened to kill her lover Jogan by throwing him into the ocean. Instead, she suggested that he use his own Keshiri slave Tellpah for that mission. However, Edell reiterated that he wanted a local guide who knew Alanciar. He also explained that the reason why he had brought Tellpah and the other Keshiri from Keshtah was to spread their religion, which was centered around the Sith "Protectors". Edell also wanted to learn more about the military capabilities of the Alanciari.
Finally, Quarra agreed to assist Edell and help him disguise himself in return for the Sith untying Jogan from the ship's and attending to his wounds. Edell agreed to Quarra's demands and ordered the other Peppin and Tellpah to untie Jogan. Unknown to Edell, Quarra was planning to use Alanciar itself to scare her Sith captors back to "where they came from." However, she did not have a clear idea about how to do so. She instead opted to formulate her plan throughout their journey. After depositing Edell and Quarra at Meori Cove, the Mischance returned to Keshtah with lieutenant Peppin serving at his helm, in the absence of Captain Edell. While Edell was aware of this, he kept this secret from Quarra.
Behind Enemy LinesEdit
- "I don't think I have to be judged by a Sith."
"Oh, I'm not judging you. Unless it's to say that you have more in common with the Sith than you think."
- ―Quarra and Edell discussing the former's affair with Jogan Halder
Thus began a difficult and reluctant partnership between Edell Vrai and his prisoner–turn–guide Quarra Thayn. As agreed, she hid his "Human" origins by giving him a hooded seafarer's slicker and a pair of shaded goggles, which she had found aboard the Mischance. Under the cover of night, Quarra and Edell traveled on a remote mountain highway, which led them onto the main highway. After a solid day and night of traveling, the two traveled through the wooded Eskellon Mountains. At first they encountered no one, but by the second day they had encountered several Keshiri soldiers traveling west. Due to Edell's disguise, he and Quarra were able to proceed through the various checkpoints without being stopped and questioned. Unlike Keshtah, Alanciar had no jungles since the Alanciari had cut them down to build ships and to clear land for roads and canals over the past two millennia. Alanciar's southern region, known as the Shank, had a large network of well-paved roads and canals.
While four days had already elapsed since the "first contact" with the Sith, warning sirens still rang in Alanciar's cities; which were generated by steam passing through colossal glass pipes. On the fourth evening of their travels, Quarra and Edell reached the outskirts of Kerebba. While Quarra pretended to be a soldier, Edell pretended to be one of the "Sith" performers for the Observance Day play which fell on that night. The guard at the sentry post joked that Edell would make a "good Sith" for that show. When the High Lord asked her what the guard was talking about and why he had allowed them to pass, Quarra merely replied that he would see soon. When Edell told her not to be "cute" with him, she retorted that he was in no place to push him around. She also warned her captor that she could yell 'Sith' and he would be dead and probably dissected.
During their journey, Quarra settled down and talked with Edell about her family situation. She told him that she was worried about her family particularly her children. When Edell asked Quarra why her children were not present at the signal station, she refused to answer. However, Edell read her thoughts and realized that she did have a husband but that her companion Jogan was not him. Fully aware that Quarra was having an affair with Jogan, Edell commented that he was not the only "thing" she had to hide. When Quarra protested that she did not want to be judged by a Sith, Edell replied that he was not judging her but was merely noting that the Alanciari had more in common with the Sith than they thought, particularly when it came to adultery. During their travels, her captor Edell was amazed to find that the city's canals were used to transport goods, the wide usage of concrete for buildings, and the presence of waterwheels.
After an hour, Quarra and Edell arrived in Kerebba, a town whose buildings were built out of concrete, which the latter found uninspiring but useful. Due to the incessant warning sirens, Edell was unwilling to stay for the night in Kerebba. However, Quarra explained that they could not because the roads would be closed. The two travelers eventually arrived in Kerebba's main avenue where a large crowd had gathered in bright costumes. Edell pretended to be an Alanciari actor who was dressed up as a Sith for the Observance Day festivities. To add authenticity, he even donned his Sith lightsaber. Eventually, Quarra and Edell reached the main plaza where a crowd had gathered to watch a play. There were also several "Sith" revelers in the crowd. Since the play depicted the Sith in a bad light, Edell was unwilling to take part but Quarra assured him he did not need to take and told him just to "be his nasty self."
Edell was surprised that the Alanciari were still holding a play even when they were under siege. This play turned out to be part of the Observance Day ceremonies which commemorated Adari Vaal's ten year secret resistance against the Sith. In response, Quarra explained that the festival Observance Day was held throughout all of Alanciar and was even more relevant because of the Sith invasion. While Edell was familiar with theaters, he thought that the outdoor theater was amateurish compared to those in Keshtah, which were also used as a propaganda tool. During the play, a prop ship carrying an actress acting as to be Adari Vaal, the "Rock of Kesh" who was revered as a historical figure in Alanciari society, appeared on the stage while an artificial rock emerged to "bar its path." The rolling ship then stopped and dropped flat to the stage, revealing several actors who were dressed as sailors. After introducing herself, the "Adari" actress told her audience that she had come toe warn them of the "flood" to come: the Sith.
While Quarra was familiar with Observance Day from childhood, this was something new to the Sith Edell, who knew nothing about what had happened to Adari Vaal following her flight from Keshtah. Quarra explained the origins and purpose of the festival Observance Day was a ceremony that was held every ten years to commemorate the length of Adari's secret resistance against the Tribe. Quarra explained that the actress was reminding the Alanciari crowd that the Tribe was evil and posed a threat to them. For theatrical effect, several "Sith" actors emerged on the stage behind the same rock, sparking boos and jeers from the audience. The "Adari" actress claimed that the Sith were the ancient Destructors, a group of malevolent entities in Keshiri religion, but assured her listeners that they had nothing to fear from them. She went on to extol the superiority of Alanciar's forests and wildlife, particularly the shumshur and muntok beasts, which were not found on Keshtah which only had uvaks as beasts of burden.
After a "Sith" jester interjected that his people had eaten all of the animals on Keshtah, the Adari actress went on to extol the other positive virtues of Alanciar: the intellectual superiority of its people and their technology particularly their fireglobes, canals, and industry. This play confirmed Edell's hypothesis that the Keshiri on Alanciar were more advanced than their kin on Keshtah. He also realized that Adari Vaal had a strong influence on Alanciari society. While Qaurra and Edell were watching, the actress went on to reveal that Adari had taught the Alanciari how to speak Galactic Basic Standard, the "language of the evil ones", and that the Force was the source of the Sith's power. As the fireglobe reached the first "sailor" actor, he ripped off his outer costume to reveal a white outfit, which symbolized the presence of Force-sensitive individuals among the Alanciari.
To connect the play with the recent Sith invasion, the Adari actress injected references to the Alanciari's recent attack on the Sith airships at Garrow's Neck. She told her listeners that they had won the first battle and would go on to win again. After wrapping up the play, the Mayor of Kerebba, an elderly Keshiri man, stepped onto the stage and gave a speech informing the audience that the Alanciari military was already scouring the peninsulas for any trace of the attackers. While he predicted that more Sith would come, he assured the crowd that the War Cabinet had already deployed anti-air forces to the west. If more Sith came, they would die. As a result of the speech, the crowd erupted into a patriotic fervor and began chanting "Die like Sith." The public display of anti-Sith sentiment upset Edell and he led Quarra away from the crowd. While Edell wanted to kill the actors in stage, he managed to control his emotions. He told Quarra that they would be traveling tomorrow as soon as the roads had open and expressed his desire to see the "War Cabinet" and learn what Adari, the "Keshiri traitor" had told the Alanciari about the Tribe.
- "I'll admit your Keshiri here are better suited for crafting practical implements than ours."
- ―Edell's observations of the technological progress of the Keshiri on Alanciar
Following the Observance day play, Edell Vrai and Quarra Thayn slept in a dry culvert adjacent to the Kerebba canal station. While her official status entitled her to one of the city's barracks, Edell was unwilling to stay with other Alanciari because he was deeply offended by the Observance Day play which depicted the Tribe in a bad light. For Quarra, Edell's adverse reaction to the play confirmed her idea that Alanciar had been her greatest weapon against her captor. During that night, Quarra experienced a Force vision where she encountered the Sith woman Orielle Kitai, or Ori, who had lived centuries earlier on the Sith continent of Keshtah during the Time of the Rot. Orielle counselled Quarra to accept the reality that the Sith invasion was inevitable and not to build her world around a false "dream" but instead try to make the best of a bad situation. While she and Edell had come to understand each other during their travels, Quarra still did not trust him enough to share this dream with him. Instead, she kept it to herself.
The following day, Quarra and Edell continued their journey to Sus'mintri, which lay to the north of the Shank. She realized that Edell's party had been the only one that had landed so far. As they passed through several industrial towns, Edell wondered about what sought of weapons were being constructed there. This was sensed by the Force-sensitive Quarra, who was also able to read thoughts despite her untrained Force skills. While traveling through the town of Minrath, Edell attempted to feign his admiration for the town's technological progress by dismissing it as an "ugly town." However, Quarra sensed that he was lying and countered that he was actually impressed by the town. Edell then praised the workmanship of the native Alanciari, who were more skilled at crafting practice implements like canals and roads than the Keshiri on Keshtah, who were obsessed with building artworks. After speculating that the Alanciari would have built better aqueducts than the Keshtah Keshiri, Edell remarked that the Omen, the ancient Sith starship which had brought the Tribe's ancestors to Kesh, had landed in the wrong continent.
Quarra however disagreed and argued that the Sith arrival had instead triggered the high level of technological development he had seen in Alanciar. Based on Edell's observations, she concluded that the Sith did not understand that they had indirectly contributed to the advancement of the Alanciari. In response, Edell remarked that if she thought the Sith would regret it, she did not understand his people. That afternoon, Quarra and Edell reached the countryside region known as the Western Shield. While the Western Shield was predominantly dominated by farms, there were also several military signal stations. After reading Quarra's thoughts about Jogan and her affair with him, Edell informed her that he had never married. Quarra then joked that she was amazed that there were any Humans left on Kesh due to the "malevolent" nature of the Sith. In response, Edell joked that he preferred building things to making company with other people. This led Quarra to ponder whether Edell's solitary nature had enabled him to become a High Lord.
Throughout their journey, Edell was able to deflect attention from the native Alanciari by using the Force to deaden the reason of those Alanciari who stared at him. While Quarra was able to see Edell for who he was, other Alanciari were not able to focus their attention on him without becoming distracted by something else. This led Quarra to conclude that Edell and the Sith Tribe had a deeper understanding of the Force than the Alanciari. Since the pair were approaching a crossing, Quarra planned to find a cargo boat to ride up the canal to Sus'mintri. She instructed Edell to hide in the cargo compartment on the barge since his disguise as a Sith actor would no longer work after Observance Day. Quarra estimated that the journey to Sus'mintri would take two days. When Edell complained that traveling inside the cargo compartment of a boat would be uncomfortable, Quarra retorted that she was not looking for a luxury cabin. If he had wanted to travel in comfort, he should have flown his airships higher and not got shot down.
Disaster at the Western ShieldEdit
- "What are you doing here? You were all supposed to await my return—when the rest of the fleet was finished!"
- ―Edell questioning a Sith Tyro from the Ebon Fleet
Edell and Quarra were interrupted by a wail of warning sirens emanating from the signal stations, which began to flash the color-coded message on their fireglobes that the Sith had returned. Shortly later, the Alanciari thoughtcriers also began relaying warnings as well. Edell also sensed the arrival of the Sith forces but expressed anger that the Sith invasion force had arrived too soon without waiting for his return to Keshtah. Quarra and Edell witnessed the arrival of a large flotilla of sixty Sith airships known as the Ebon Fleet, which were led by fellow High Lord Korsin Bentado, the commander of the Sith invasion force. These black airships had fearsome designs painted across their gondolas, which were made from heavy vosso wood frames. To provide a fearsome appearance, each of these airships had spears in front of the gondola.
Edell and Quarra also witnessed the swift response of the Alanciari military to the Sith invaders. Due to the highly-organized Alanciari communications networks of semaphore machines and thoughtcriers, the Alanciari military was able to deploy several mobile ballista units which were transported by muntok-driven hay carts. These hay carts carried large wooden boxes which were used to transport the ballista artillery units. These mobile ballista units fired flaming javelins and shards of glass at the airships. As a result, several Sith airships were quickly destroyed when these projectiles pierced the airships' gas envelops, igniting the volatile hydrogen gas. Ballista units stationed at a nearby fortress also entered the fray, downing more airships. Within minutes, the Ebon Fleet had been decimated and many wrecked airships crashed on the ground. While many Sith crew and warriors aboard were killed, several Sith managed to survive but were immediately hunted down by the Alanciari soldiers.
Edell and Quarra were quickly caught-up in the fighting when several Sith survivors fought back against their Alanciari pursuers. Quarra fought a black-suited Sith Tyro who had killed a young Keshiri soldier. Amidst the fighting, Edell made contact with the Tyro who recognized him. Edell asked the Tyro why his forces had not awaited his return to Keshtah Minor when the rest of the airships were finished. Before he could finish, the Tyro saw Quarra raising her weapon and lunged at her, bisecting her hand ballista. Before he could finish her off, Edell and Quarra combined their Force powers and hurled the Tyro and his lightsaber into a nearby field. When Edell asked Quarra to explain her actions, she replied that she was merely doing her job. After kneeling to cradle the fallen Keshiri soldier whose hand ballista she had taken, Quarra reiterated that she had only made a deal with Edell and no other Sith.
Meanwhile, Korsin Bentado's flagship Yaru crashed into a nearby plateau in the east which was where they were heading. Edell and Quarra took advantage of the explosion to escape the battlefield. Quarra then announced that their plans had changed and they would make a detour to her hometown of Uhrar to check that her people and her three children were safe. Edell was initially reluctant to go on a detour since Uhrar was three-days away to the south-east of the capital Sus'mintri. However, Quarra refused to compromise on her family's safety. When Edell attempted to use her lover Jogan as leverage, Quarra insisted that her family came first always. While her Edell was unhappy with Quarra's detour, he had no choice but to travel with her since it was unsafe to be both Sith and Human in Alanciar at that time.
Quarra used her credentials as wardmaster and chief military administrator to commandeer a muntok cart and team. After three days and nights of relentless travel, they arrived at Uhrar, with the latter riding in the back of the cart. Upon arriving in Uhrar, Quarra visited the town's shelter where she found her children were safely asleep. Meanwhile, Edell waited inside the muntok cart outside of her office and ate the food that she had brought for him. Despite acceding to her demands, Edell was grumpy towards Quarra since his detour was costly for him. They then continued their journey to Uhrar. Due to the aerial attacks, a blackout had been imposed on all communities throughout Alanciar.
While traveling, Edell attempted to recruit Quarra into the Sith Tribe by appealing to her desire to improve herself and her frustration with the weakness of other people. Her dissatisfaction had made her a good wardmaster. Edell also noted that she had good organizational skills and recognized that she regarded a lack of ambition as a sign of weakness. When Quarra did not respond to his comments, Edell changed the topic to her husband Brue. By reading Quarra's thoughts, Edell deduced that she regarded Brue as a burden and that had driven her to the sentinel Jogan. However, Edell argued that Jogan was only marginally better than her husband and that she would eventually become frustrated with him. When Quarra disagreed, Edell suggested that Quarra was better than him and that Jogan would eventually weigh her down, likening him to the uvak from his airships. Thus, Edell urged her to cut Jogan lose as well. However, Quarra was unwilling to make a choice like that.
Edell then attempted to introduce Quarra to Sith philosophy and likened her to an airship which had to carry more when it became larger. He explained that power was not just limited to choices but also enabled the person to decide whether they needed to choose at all. As a Sith, Quarra could not only keep both her family and her lover, but she could also extend her own authority and have everyone obey it. When Quarra asked whether joining the Sith would entail service to him, Edell concurred but also argued that she could also serve herself. For Edell, being a Sith was a matter of belief and nobody could truly be a Sith unless they were still chained to someone else. Thus, Edell urged Quarra to sever her "lesser ties". Edell's words annoyed Quarra who retorted that the Sith and their airships had a way of "blowing up." Unable to reason with Quarra, Edell then lay down and rested at the back of the muntok cart.
Reunion at Sus'mintriEdit
- "Rough landing. We cut the gondola lose as soon as we cleared the top of the ridge. Your hydrogen was a bad idea."
"It got us here. They're great builders here. But this can't be the hub for all their communications."
- ―Bentado and Edell's reunion
Unknown to Edell Vrai, he was soon to be reunited with his Sith comrades. While he was asleep, Quarra Thayn secretly sent a telepathic message to the War Cabinet in Sus'mintri telling them that she had a Sith Lord with her. The War Cabinet instructed Quarra to bring Edell to them stating that they knew what to do. This message was attached with the War Cabinet's official identifier code. While Quarra still pondered whether they would execute or dissect him, she was determined to save Jogan and be a heroine for her people at the same time. Unknown to her, Jogan had already left Alanciar and become a "guest" of the Lost Tribe. Following a mass deception operation staged by Grand Lord Hilts, the Sith had successfully convinced Jogan that they did not pose a threat to Alanciar. Unknown to either Edell or Quarra, Bentado and several of his Ebon Fleet followers had survived the debacle at the Western Shield. These had already infiltrated Sus'mintri where they had wiped out the War Cabinet, Alanciar's military government, and seized control of the strategically important Vaal Hall.
For the Sith Tribe, the capture of Vaal Hall was an enormous boost because it contained a "worldwatch" situation room that controlled all semaphore and telepathic communications throughout the continent. Due to the highly centralized nature of Alanciari society, Bentado's forces were able to control the Alanciari from behind the scenes. During their brief occupation, the Sith used this signal station to order the Alanciari to open the compound's gates, deliver food inside the gate, and to bring Sith prisoners to Vaal Hall—a subterfuge to gather reinforcements. Thus, Quarra had been communicating with a Sith thoughtcrier who was masquerading as an Alanciari government official. Upon arriving at the guard post outside Vaal Hall, the Sith "prisoner" Edell and his captor Wardmaster Quarra who had received orders to allow them both inside. The pair entered a large courtyard and were both perplexed that the War Cabinet had wanted to see them both. Upon arriving inside Vaal Hall, the two immediately sensed that something was wrong. Edell then realized that Quarra had intended to lure him into a trap, not knowing that Bentado had already captured the building.
In response, Quarra retorted that Edell had never told her what she had wanted to do in her "country." She implied that he wanted to visit the country and its capital, and to meet the War Cabinet. As a bureaucrat, Quarra could not just walk him through the "front door." In response, Edell told her that he was going to walk her through the "front door." Upon arriving inside the main hallway, the two travelers found several dead guards, administrators, and aides. Quarra deduced that the building had not actually been stormed since there had been no vigorous defense at the doorway. She theorized that the Keshiri had been caught by surprise and also noted that many had lightsaber wounds, which indicated a Sith presence. Quarra also recognized several of her colleagues among the deceased.
Edell then asked her whether everything important was located downstairs. Quarra confirmed this was the case and two went downstairs. She also sensed that there was a pervasive dark side presence within this building and that it was spreading. Upon exiting the main hallway, they found a sitting room which had a large tapestry of Adari Vaal decorating its wall. When Edell remarked that Adari was an "ugly woman", Quarra replied that he was only saying so because he knew who she was. In the past, Quarra had visited that room frequently during her meetings with the War Cabinet. When the two entered the War Cabinet's meeting room, they found that Alanciar's entire political leadership had been killed. Sensing Bentado's presence nearby, Edell told her to follow him and to stay close.
Further inside, Quarra and Edell encountered several Sith who were guarding the "worldwatch", the large circular underground chamber which served as Alanciar's command center. These Sith sentries first brought Edell to their leader Bentado who welcomed his fellow High Lord Lord. He then ordered Edll to bring his Keshiri guide in and explained that she was the reason why he was here. Edell deactivated his lightsaber and led Quarra by her wrist into the worldwatch. After updating Edell about his escape from the Alanciari at the Western Shield, Bentado revealed that the Sith had managed to capture one of Sus'mintri's thirteen signal towers. He also explained how he had managed to use the facility's thoughtcrier center to order the Alanciari to bring their Sith prisoners to Vaal Hall. Quarra was shocked and astonished that Bentado had succeeded in toppling the War Cabinet, the organization that had provided Alanciar its strength. Edell also sensed that Bentado would claim all of the glory for himself.
The Second TribeEdit
- "No. We're not going to do this again. High Lord Bentado has established control over the Keshiri of this continent. You will help him until reinforcements arrive. Then we'll work together to consolidate power here—in the name of the Tribe, and Grand Lord Hilts."
"You always were a bore. Take him!"
- ―Edell challenging Bentado's mutiny
An unexpected development would then force Edell Vrai and his captive Quarra Thayn to work together as a team. Having decapitated the Alanciari government, High Lord Korsin Bentado decided to mutiny against his liege Grand Lord Hilts and create a new empire on Alanciar with himself as its ruler. As part of his plans, Bentado then ordered his Sith signalers to deactivate their alarms and to prepare for the arrival of a second wave of Sith airships. Edell and Bentado knew that the Tribe still had a dozen airships left on Keshtah Minor which were under the command of Grand Lord Varner Hilts, the Tribe's leader. When Edell suggested that they warn the Tribe about the threat of the Alanciari anti-aircraft ballista, Bentado revealed that he wanted the Alanciari to shoot down the Tribe's remaining airships. Bentado also revealed his plans to create a "Second Tribe" on Alanciar that would be independent of Grand Lord Hilts. Korsin regarded Hilts as an obstacle to his own succession to the Grand Lordship and believed that he could become the ruler of his own Tribe in Alanciar. Bentado hoped to control Alanciar's strong military and industrial base for his own ambitions.
While Edell agreed with Bentado's assessment that the Alanciari had certain superior qualities, he argued that the same potential existed among the Keshiri on Keshtah since they were the same people. Korsin then retorted by asking whether Edell had two thousands to train them. The other High Lord then proceeded to defend his plans by reiterating Sith philosophy about self glorification and the need for the perfect Sith to control everything and everyone. He also argued that the Tribe's founder Yaru Korsin had only succeeded in winning the Keshiri in Keshtah over but had failed to conquer them. Unlike his ancestor however, Bentado planned to conquer the Alanciari by bending their working system of government to his rule. He also claimed that he would succeed where Yaru failed because there were no other Sith on Alanciar. Edell listened to Korsin's arguments but regarded his ambitions as a grandiose and flawed. While admiring the originality of Bentado's plan to rule Alanciar as a solitary Sith, he argued it doomed to failed because he was not the only Sith present on that continent, pointing to Korsin's Sith followers.
A defensive Bentado responded that the Sith followers in the building were loyal to him, since they had been recruited from the ranks of his Korsinite League. Edell countered that he could not always rely on the loyalty of his Sith followers since they would eventually tire of hiding indoors. Quarra defended Edell by reiterating that the latter had received motivated help. By contrast, she stressed that Bentado would receive no help from the Alanciari since he had killed their leaders in cold blood. Edell tried to reason with Korsin by convincing him to work for the greater good of the Tribe by bring its airships to Alanciar safely. Unable to reason with Bentado, Edell then turned to his Sith followers and told them that Bentado had successfully established control over the Keshiri of Keshtah Major. He ordered them to help him until the Tribe's reinforcements arrived. Edell then reiterated that they would work together to consolidate power on the continent in the name of the Tribe and Grand Lord Hilts.
Bentado was angered by Edell's recalcitrance and ordered his men to seize Edell and Quarra. They fled the "Worldwatch" and entered the hallway which they had entered through earlier. During their escape, Edell was wounded by Bentado who unleashed Force lightning on him. However, Quarra managed to wound Bentado's left arm with her hand-ballista, giving them enough time to reach the anteroom outside the War Cabinet's chamber. She also confused their Sith pursuers by smashing the fireglobes which lit the hallway. Due to her frequent visits to Vaal Hall, Quarra knew that there was a flight of stairs at the opposite end of this room which led to the surface level. While she wanted to escape to the surface and warn the Keshiri about the Sith, she saw that Edell had been seriously wounded and was unable to travel further.
- "Okay. But get something straight. I'm not helping you for you, or for me. I'm going to stop Bentado—and put things right. I'm doing this for my people."
- ―Quarra Thayn's alliance of convenience with Edell
Despite her animosity towards the Edell Vrai, Quarra Thayn came to develop a close bond with Edell and was unwilling to abandon him to Bentado and his men. Quarra also recalled that it had been ten days since she and Edell had left Meori cove and the Mischance. She wanted to return in order to save her lover Jogan. However, Edell revealed that the ship had already left for Keshtah several days ago. While Quarra was angry that Edell had not kept his promise, she agreed to hide him from Bentado's followers who were out to kill them both. In the end, Quarra discovered that the wall tapestry of Adari Vaal led to a secret chamber which turned out to be her secret library. For that night, Edell and Quarra hid inside Adari's library. Quarra nursed the wounded Edell back to health and he recovered from his wounds after a good night's sleep.
Three of Bentado's Sith followers, who were from the Korsinite League, were waiting outside the tapestry but did not think to search inside it for their quarries. Despite Quarra's animosity towards Edell for capturing her and deceiving her about Jogan, she came to realize that he was a different sort of person from Bentado. While the two Sith were still murderers, Edell was a builder rather than a fighter. He was also interested in something larger—rebuilding the Tribe and uniting Alanciar and Kesh under Sith rule. For Quarra, this contradicted the selfish nature of the Sith and defeated the point of being Sith. While Quarra did not trust Edell, she was not willing to abandon him and even saved him from the other Sith. After reading Adari Vaal's personal memoirs which revealed that the vaunted historical figure had succumbed to temptation by Yaru Korsin, the founder of the Tribe, Quarra resolved to asked Edell about the Tribe's leader.
Quarra asked Edell about what he meant when he said that more of his people were coming and that he and Bentado's followers were serving someone else. She also asked him whether this person, Grand Lord Hilts, was as bad as Bentado. Edell, who knew Varner Hilts closely and was a close friend of the Grand Lord, was able to assure her that he was nothing like Bentado. While the Grand Lord was old, he was a wise and was one of the "better" leaders the Tribe had experienced throughout the past three millennia. Edell explained that the Tribe had to endure leaders who were much worse than Hilts. Quarra then asked whether Keshtah's aqueducts had fallen into ruins due to some of his people's leaders. Edell confirmed that this had been the case during the Time of the Rot, which he described as a millennium of chaos. Edell was able to appeal to Quarra and her people's love for building to convince her to help him stop Bentado.
Quarra decided to help Edell on the grounds that she was not doing this for him or for herself. Instead, they were going to stop Bentado for the sake of the Alanciari people. While Quarra accepted Adari's reasoning that the Sith were animals, she concluded that some animals are better than others. Edell replied that this was the same as doing it for you but suggested that they discuss Sith philosophy later and focus on their battle plan. Edell recognized that they needed to cut off Bentado's communications for their plan to succeed. However, they could not go to the Alanciari since he knew that they would cut him to pieces. If Quarra went alone for help and the other Alanciari found him here, they would also kill her as well. While the two toyed with the idea of using a hand-ballista to shoot out the fireglobes on the signal tower, they concluded that this would take forever and that both the Alanciari and Sith would then kill them.
Since Adari had been unable to send a telepathic message through the Force due to the toxic levels of fear among the Alanciari, Edell concluded that the only way to stop Bentado is to stop the High Lord himself. However, he quickly realized that the two of them needed to fight but that they only had one weapon: his lightsaber. Quarra however managed to fix this problem by finding Adari Vaal's lightsaber, which she had stolen from the Sith prior to her flight to Alanciar. The two of them then climbed up to the "worldwatch" using a diagonal tunnel which led upwards from the secret archives.
Sith versus SithEdit
- "Stay back, Edell! If this purple thing means anything to you—stay back!"
- ―Bentado threatening Edell and Quarra
Meanwhile, Grand Lord Hilts' airship Good Omen arrived off the western coast of Alanciar near Port Melephos. In response, Bentado, who was still nursing his wounds, instructed Squab to order the Alanciari uvak "diamond-flak" teams to engage the aircraft. Unknown to Bentado, Edell and Quarra had managed to enter Bentado's "worldwatch" room through the diagonal tunnel which led into a ventilation shaft. Upon exiting, Edell jumped onto Bentado, driving his head into the map surface. After rolling across the map table, he ignited his lightsaber. Shortly later, Quarra emerged and startled Squab. Edell was then attacked by a female follower of Bentado but he shoved her back with the Force. This distraction enabled Bentado to recover and snare Edell's ankle, causing him to fall to the ground. Quarra then attacked Bentado with Adari's lightsaber but the High Lord deflected hers by using his higher position on the map table. Meanwhile, Edell recovered from his fall and managed to impale another Bentado defender.
However, they were unable to stop Squab from escaping to the tower to relay Bentado's command. While Quarra could undo Bentado's grip on Alanciar from the tower, Edell feared that she could bring a host of Alanciari on his head. Before Quarra could pursue Squab, Bentado used the Force to throw her against one of the lower belfies, knocking away her lightsaber. Standing over the Keshiri woman, Bentado threatened to kill her unless Edell stayed back from him. In response, Edell threatened Squab with his lightsaber since the Keshiri servant was cowering near him besides the wooden spiral stair case which led to the signal tower. However, Bentado was unconcerned by the potential harm to his Keshiri servant since he believed that he could find more Keshiri servants on Alanciar.
When Bentado threatened to kill Quarra unless Edell yielded, Edell stood up for her by describing her as a "big help" and telling Bentado that it was rude for guests to kill their hosts. Bentado dismissed Edell as a "fool" and used the Force to throw Edell against a concrete wall. As a result of the attack, Edell dropped his lightsaber and Bentado flung Quarra to Edell's side. After Squab emerged from hiding, Bentado ordered the Keshiri to pick up Quarra's lightsaber while he took care of his two enemies himself. Bentado intended to execute his two wounded combatants but was interrupted by a message from Squab. Squab had received a parchment from one of Bentado's other Keshiri servants which carried the news that Grand Lord Hilt's airship had safely landed at Port Melephos, a coastal port at the top of the Shank. When Bentado asked whether the airship had been brought down, Squab confirmed that it had landed. Bentado was shocked that his plan to assassinate the Grand Lord had come apart.
In reality, Squab had been secretly serving Grand Lord Hilts and had disobeyed Bentado's command to down the Grand Lord's airship. In desperation, Bentado attempted to command Squab to order the Alanciari troops to kill Hilts and anyone with him. However, Squab countermanded that order with a new order from Hilts ordering him to kill Bentado. Squab then used Quarra's lightsaber to stab Lord Bentado through the heart, killing the Sith Lord. This effectively ended Bentado's dreams of creating a "Second Tribe" and killing his rival Hilts. Squab then handed Bentado's weapons to Edell Vrai, who was designated as the new commander of the Sith forces on Alanciar. Following the defeat of Bentado, Edell reasserted control over Bentado's men and the signaling devices.
With the death of Bentado, Squab and the Keshiri whom accompanied Bentado quickly complied with Edell's orders. These Keshiri slaves were loyal to Grand Lord Hilts and disarmed Bentado's surviving Korsinite League supporters. Edell was able to force the Korsinites to yield to his authority by threatening to bring all of the Alanciari down upon Vaal Hall if they did not surrender. Edell also communicated a deal from Grand Lord Hilts to the surviving Korsinities. Grand Lord Hilts intended to exile or enslave the defeated Korsinities. Due to their heavy losses at the Western Shield and the death of their leader, the Korsinite League was all but broken. Following the defeat of Bentado's mutiny, Edell also sent semaphore transmissions to the new arrivals at Port Melephos, updating him about the events of Alanciar and Bentado's rebellion.
The Grand DeceptionEdit
- "...I asked about the first airships we saw—those of Edell Vrai, whose warriors accosted and kidnapped me. The human councilors told me that Vrai was a trusted friend, who had come in search of the criminals. Startled by the swiftness and technological power of our defense, Vrai feared that we served the Destructors, too. And that, my friends, is why the y brought me to Keshtah. They had to know that we were not the vile enemies of legend!..."
- ―Jogan Halder's official version of Edell's role in the Sith invasion of Alanciar
Following the defeat of Korsin Bentado, Edell Vrai and Quarra Thayn contacted the surviving city leaders of Sus'mintri and told them that they had defeated the "evil ones" who had killed the Alanciari leaders in Vaal Hall. Edell was supported by Bentado's former Keshiri servants, led by Squab, who now occupied the important signal tower until Hilts' forces arrived. Edell and his guide were also present when Grand Lord Hilts' airship Good Omen arrived over the Sus'mintri parade grounds, where the Alanciari army also stood at attention. Unlike the Ebon Fleet, this airship had been painted white and adorned with jewels, tassels, artworks, and silk buntings to convey the impression that the Sith were good and had no ill intentions towards the Alanciari. Hilts' airship had already visited Port Melephos where Hilts and his new Keshiri "ambassador" Jogan Halder had managed to convince the locals there of their "good" intentions. When Quarra asked Edell if the Good Omen had been the royal vehicle he had been working on, he confirmed that this was the case but that the Sith had changed the exterior very fast.
As in Port Melephos, Jogan Halder delivered his testimony from the front balcony of the airship. He described how he had been taken by the Sith beyond the Southern Passage to Keshtah Minor following Edell's scouting mission to Alanciar. Upon landing, Jogan had been blindfolded and transported on a cart to Tahv, the capital of the Tribe. There, Jogan recalled that he had his blindfold removed and was allowed to roam the city freely. The city was filled with Keshiri craftsmen, painters, sculptors, and musicians who greeted him. The Keshtah Keshiri told him that they were a "happy and free" people who lived under the protection of the Sith, whom they called the "Protectors", ancient gods in Keshiri mythology. He claimed that the Keshiri in Keshtah had lived in peace for two millennia and had been able to commit themselves fully to leisure pastimes like the arts, painting, music, and singing. By contrast, the Keshiri in Alanciari were said to have spent the past two millennia in drudgery.
Halder was also allowed to visit the Tribe's capitol building where he befriended the Circle of Lords. He described the Circle of Lords as a council where no man or woman ranked above the other. The Sith told Jogan that they Sith did not actually pose a threat to the Alanciari. While they acknowledged that Adari Vaal had been right about the presence of the "evil" Destructors among the Sith in her home continent, he claimed that the Tribe had already purged the Destructors one day after Vaal had left the continent for Alanciar. According to Halder, if Adari had waited just one more day, those that she had feared would have been destroyed and her warning would have been unnecessary. He argued therefore that the militarization of Alanciari civilization therefore had been unnecessary.
However, Jogan also mentioned that a servant of the Destructors, Korsin Bentado, had risen in Keshtah again two thousand years later but had been driven from the continent. This same individual had also built a fleet of airships and had sought to conquer Alanciar. Jogan then mentioned that the Sith Edell Vrai and his airships had been sent in pursuit of those criminals. Edell had been startled by the military and technological power of the Alanciari, and his people had brought him to Keshtah because they wanted to verify that the Alanciari were not the "vile enemies of legend." According Jogan, the clash between the Alanciari and Vaal's forces had thus been an unnecessary and needless misunderstanding. Jogan then recalled that he had assured the Sith that the Alanciari had always been on the side of good and that they would resist any evil that came their way. He then concluded by arguing that the Alanciari were not deserving of their wrath. Jogan also added that the Sith were glad that the Alanciari were "good" and had offered to help.
Jogan Halder's testament was warmly received by the Sus'mintri crowd. Quarra quickly realized that Jogan had become the "new Herald" but that he told tales that were pleasing to the Sith. Quarra examined the facial expressions of the Alanciari crowd and quickly discovered that they were taking him seriously despite what she regarded as his "incredible" tale. Since Jogan was an Alanciari, his people were more willing to trust and believe his account. Quarra then toyed with the idea of telling her own account of her ordeal with the Sith in an attempt to convince her people that the Sith did indeed pose a threat to them. However, she was unable to do because she felt a sense of paralysis since the moment that Edell had reasserted control over Bentado's crew. Thus, there had been no chance for her to provide an alternative account. Quarra attempted to open her mouth but was immediately interrupted by Jogan, who announced that there was someone else the Alanciari had to meet.
This second individual turned out to be Grand Lord Varner Hilts himself, who had disguised himself as the "Kesh-born" minion of the Bright Tuash, an avian Keshiri deity. While the Alanciari crowd were awed by the arrival of this "holy old man", Edell recognized his old friend and laughed aloud. Hilts claimed that he was two thousand years old and that both the Sith and Keshiri were his children. He also claimed that Adari Vaal, the revered founder of Alanciari civilization, was his daughter and that she had been well-meaning but misguided. He backed Jogan's account and professed to be saddened that the Destructors had attacked and killed the Alanciari War Cabinet. He also assured the Alanciari that the Destructors and their leader had been defeated by his agent Edell Vrai and the Alanciari woman Quarra Thayn, whom he described as a well-trained soldier. To facilitate peace between the two continents, the "Bright Tuash" decreed that both Human and Keshiri relief workers in white robes would arrive from Keshtah over the next few days to promote reconciliation and unity.
- "...I read your signals about Bentado turning. Well, that was only a matter of time. I'm glad you were here to take care of him."
"I started—but Squab finished him."
- ―Grand Lord Hilts and Edell
Following Jogan Halder and Varner Hilts' speeches, the Good Omen landed on the parade grounds and was greeted by thousands of friendly Alanciari, who had accepted the Sith's message. As a precaution, Hilts had staffed his airship with an entirely Keshiri crew and these "ambassadors" mingled with the Alanciari. Edell Vrai then met the Grand Lord and the two Humans chatted about their experiences of conquering Alanciar. Hilts began the conversation by remarking that donning the bird costume and riding the airship had been the "worst blasted thing" he had done. Edell responded by defending his airships as a means of providing flight for those who were unable to ride uvak. He also suggested producing more airships. However, his liege disagreed and suggested that the Alanciari sea vessels were a better way of connecting the Tribe's newly-expanded empire. Edell and Hilts were encouraged by the fact that Peppin and the Mischance had successfully traveled across the ocean to Keshtah.
Hilts then changed the topic to his grand deception operation which had enabled the Tribe to "peacefully" conquer Alanciar. Hilts praised Edell for sending Jogan and his reading collection, which contained a copy of the Keshtah Chronicles. The book provided Hilts with information about what the Alanciari knew about them. Edell then remarked that the "runaway" Keshiri Adari Vaal had done a lot of damage. However, Hilts revealed that he managed to neutralize this problem by exploiting the fact that the Alanciari shared the same creation beliefs as their Keshtah counterparts: the Protectors and the Destructors. As Yaru Korsin had done three thousand years ago, it was simply a matter for Hilts to convince the Alanciari who the Tribe were in the story; which also meant creating a role for Korsin Bentado.
To counter the deep-seated anti-Sith sentiment promoted by Adari Vaal, the Sith had to convince Halder and his people that while the Keshtah Chronicles were true, the Sith were actually the Protectors. To deflect attention from the Tribe, Hilts managed to depict his rival Bentado and his supporters as followers of the Destructors. This was helped by the sinister appearance of Bentado and his followers, many of whom had come from the former Korsinite League. Hilts had also reasoned that Bentado's Ebon Fleet would give the Alanciari the fight that they would win. Despite knowing about the military capabilities of the Alanciari from Edell's followers, Hilts had withheld this information from Bentado since the High Lord was too headstrong to listen to reason and because Hilts wanted to eliminate a political rival.
Hilts had also tricked Jogan into believing that Keshtah was a utopian paradise by putting the Tribe's most loyal Keshiri on to the streets of Tahv to create a false carnival atmosphere. Meanwhile, the Tribe had withdrawn from public view. To perpetuate the deception that the Tribe were actually the Protectors, Hilts had ordered that "changes" be made to the exterior of the Tribe's remaining airships including his flagship Good Omen. Finally, Hilts and his followers had done white clothing to perpetuate the impression that they were the Protectors. Ultimately, this deception worked and most of the Alanciari bought the message that the Sith were actually benevolent. While several Force-sensitive Alanciari sensed that Hilts was being deceptive, they did not object because they were tired of the militaristic nature of Alanciari society and were willing to accept change. While Quarra had been the lone dissenter, Edell told her that her people wanted to be deceived.
Hilts was also happy that Edell had informed him about Bentado's treachery, which the Grand Lord regarded as being inevitable. He also praised Edell for taking care of the traitor. Edell responded that Squab had been the one who had killed Bentado. Hilts was pleased that Squab had been one of his wife Iliana's ideas. He also advised the younger man to run whenever a Grand Lord of the Sith sent his regards. Edell laughed at Hilts' job but then expressed concerns that Sith infighting could begin again now that their mission of conquering Keshtah Major was complete. However, Hilts disagreed that their mission was completed. He argued that capturing new slaves was not victory. The next task that ahead for the Tribe was to bring the Alanciari willingly into the Tribe's service. Hilts then talked about his new history project which he had been working on: his own, revamped testament which was intended to replace the older Testament of Varner Hilts.
Governor of AlanciarEdit
- "It could all begin again, Grand Lord. The Sith infighting. Our mission is done."
"Is it? Capturing new slaves isn't victory. Any lout with a blade can do that, like the original Sith did to our Tapani ancestors. But bring them into your service willingly? Now, that's something. It's going to take all of our efforts, together..."
- ―Edell Vrai and Varner Hilts discussing the Sith "unification" of Alanciar
Following the Sith "unification" of Alanciar and Keshtah, Edell Vrai became the de facto governor of Alanciar. For the next few days following Hilts' visit, Edell and the Sith and Keshiri emissaries from Keshtah mingled among the Alanciari populace, winning their hearts and minds. These Sith emissaries donned white togs and gave many beautiful gifts to the locals. News of Jogan Halder's Testament spread throughout the continent. Despite his new position as governor, Edell realized that it would take years of cooperation for Sith rule to be fully accepted and acknowledge by all of the Alanciari people. While the High Lord faced many of the same challenges that his ancestors from the Omen had face, Edell's job was more complicated since every Keshiri village and state farm contained an innovation that was unknown to Keshtah. All of these had to evaluated.
Some of these advances particularly the sailing ships and the fireglobes would be introduced to Keshtah. The Tribe had plans to explore the rest of Kesh particularly the unexplored northern hemisphere. To encourage transcontinental travel and trade, there were also plans to raise two artificial reefs in the Western Sea to provide uvak with rest stations. Other technologies like the ballista would be gradually destroyed in order to disarm the Alanciari and to prevent any ambitious Sith from using Alanciar's industry to threaten the Grand Lord in Tahv. Edell then had a brief reunion with his one-time guide Quarra. Following Jogan Halder's Testament and Varner Hilts' speech, Quarra Thayn did not stay to greet the Grand Lord.
Instead, she had joined the cleanup crew at Vaal Hall, who were removing the dead bodies and restoring the building to its proper functions. Squab and Bentado's surviving Keshiri, who were now under Edell Vrai's command, had held the strategically important signal tower until the Tribe's white-suited human advisers had arrived. When Edell met Quarra, she was outside the courtyard wall feeding the muntok team. The surviving Korsinite League followers, who had been designated as the "servants of the Destructors", were presumably taken into custody by the Tribe where they face enslavement or exile. When Edell asked about her sentry friend Jogan, Quarra replied that she had seem him briefly but that he seemed busy. Edell informed her that Jogan who have a place of honor in Sith society since he was the fist visitor from Alanciar. However, he acknowledged that Jogan would not be trusted as blindly as Adari Vaal had been. He concluded that the Tribe had taken Jogan in exchange for Adari Vaal.
Quarra did not respond to Edell's comment and instead fastened a saddlebag to one of the muntoks and detached him from the cart. Edell then attempted to recruit Quarra as an "ambassador" like Jogan or a Force-sensitive adept in the Tribe. He explained that Grand Lord Hilts had been impressed by the Force tradition of the Alanciari and had always wanted to allow Keshiri to join the Tribe. Thus, a number of roads were open to Quarra. However, Quarra disagreed and said that only one path was open to her: her husband and her family. She returned to her hometown of Uhrar where she reconciled with her family. Meanwhile, Edell stayed in Sus'mintri where he continued governing the Tribe's new acquisition.
Personality and traitsEdit
- "Yes, some animals are better than others—but they're still animals. Stay with your own."
- ―Quarra Thayn's thoughts impression of Edell Vrai
Edell Vrai was interested in Korsinite architecture and engineering. Due to his passion for building things, he never married or took an interest in the Lost Tribe of Sith's political games. As a Sith, Edell was well-versed in the dark side of the Force and lightsaber combat. As a member of the Golden Destiny faction, Edell believed that the Tribe needed to stop fighting, unseal the temple and return to the stars, which they regarded as the true destiny of the Sith Tribe. While Edell was capable of murdering other sentient beings without any remorse as in the case of the Sith Saber Ulbrick, he was still interested in a larger destiny: preserving the existence of the Tribe and preventing a recurrence of Sith infighting which had destabilized and almost destroyed the Tribe during the millennium-long Time of the Rot.
Unlike many other Sith like Bentado, Edell did not fully embrace the notion of self-glorification though he still believed that a good Sith had to free themselves of "lesser ties" in order to realize their full potential. Vrai was also known for his loyalty and patriotism to the Tribe, which led him to oppose Korsin Bentado's mutiny against Grand Lord Varner Hilts. Like his close friend Hilts, Edell related well to the native Keshiri and was willing to allow them to join the Tribe as Sith acolytes. Quarra Thayn noted that Edell had a calculating and rational towards solving problems. This set him apart from the dogmatic and ambitious Bentado.
Powers and abilitiesEdit
- "It [airship] does make flight available to those who can't ride. We could do a lot with them—"
"The people of Kesh are puffed up enough, my boy. It's no way to tie together an empire..."
- ―Edell and Varner Hilts discuss the significance of the former's invention: the airship
Edell Vrai was a skilled engineer and mathematician who had an interest in architecture and technology particularly the Tribe's ancient starship Omen, which had brought the Tribe's ancestors to the planet Kesh in the first place. Due to his technical skills, he oversaw a joint demolition project by the various Sith factions to destroy the Omen by collapsing the Kesh Sith Temple's main tower on it. He was responsible for inventing the Tribe's airships, which relied on helium to stay aloft and were propelled by uvak, winged reptilian beasts of burden. As a Sith, Edell was Force-sensitive and knew how to wield a lightsaber. In addition, he was also adept at hiding his identity by using the Force to deaden the reasoning of people who stared at him. Edell also knew to break down mental barriers by sending psychic attacks. Despite his Force abilities, Edell was not a fighter but was rather a builder.
Behind the scenesEdit
Edell Vrai was first created by John Jackson Miller as a Sith character in his Lost Tribe of the Sith eBook series, which features a stranded Sith tribe on the Wild Space planet of Kesh. He first appeared as a speaking character in the eighth short story Lost Tribe of the Sith: Secrets, which was first released on March 5, 2012. He was later developed into a major point-of-view character in the series finale Lost Tribe of the Sith: Pandemonium, which was published on July 24 2012 as part of the mass paperback Star Wars: Lost Tribe of the Sith: The Collected Stories. These mark his only known appearances in the Star Wars Expanded Universe. According to Miller's production notes on his website Faraway Press, the author had intended to use Edell to develop a technology to reach Alanciar that would be within the reach of the Tribe. However, this airship technology, which he had invented, had to come with enough drawbacks to ensure that it would no longer be around by the time of the Fate of the Jedi novels. In an email interview dated to December 11 2013, Miller also confirmed that contrary to fan assumptions, the blonde-haired High Lord depicted at the exposition of Lost Tribe of the Sith—Spiral 1, was never intended to be Edell Vrai, who was already based in Alanciar by that stage.
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 Lost Tribe of the Sith: Secrets
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Lost Tribe of the Sith: Pantheon
- ↑ 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 3.14 3.15 3.16 3.17 3.18 3.19 3.20 3.21 3.22 3.23 3.24 3.25 3.26 3.27 3.28 3.29 3.30 3.31 3.32 3.33 3.34 3.35 3.36 3.37 3.38 3.39 3.40 3.41 3.42 3.43 3.44 3.45 3.46 3.47 3.48 3.49 3.50 3.51 3.52 3.53 3.54 3.55 3.56 3.57 3.58 3.59 3.60 3.61 3.62 3.63 3.64 3.65 3.66 3.67 3.68 3.69 3.70 3.71 3.72 3.73 3.74 3.75 3.76 3.77 3.78 3.79 3.80 3.81 Lost Tribe of the Sith: Pandemonium
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Lost Tribe of the Sith/Email from John Jackson Miller
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Lost Tribe of the Sith, 22 January 2014/Email from John Jackson Miller
- ↑ John Jackson Miller. Star Wars: Lost Tribe of the Sith - The Collected Stories. Faraway Press. Retrieved on January 5, 2013.
- ↑ John Jackson Miller interview December 11 2013