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Duel near the Kesh Sith Temple

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"I agreed to your little group to give you something to do. You should be ashamed. Get back to Tahv."
"I'm not like Nida. I don't need hobbies. Enough time has been wasted. It's time to make your reckoning, Captain Korsin. You told us yourself. A new age has dawned. It's time for military authority to end. This is about successsion—about who should best lead the Tribe."
―Yaru and Jariad Korsin[src]

A duel took place near the Kesh Sith Temple in 4975 BBY when Seelah Korsin and her son, Jariad Korsin, attempted to avenge the death of Seelah's husband and Jariad's father, Devore, by killing Grand Lord Yaru Korsin, who had dueled and killed Devore twenty five years previously. Although Yaru was killed, Yaru and Seelah's daughter, Nida, murdered her half-brother Jariad and succeeded her father as Grand Lord. As punishment for Seelah's role in the assassination attempt, she was banished to the Kesh Sith Temple where she died. In addition, the Tribe also succeeded in preventing a Keshiri uprising led by Adari Vaal from taking place.

HistoryEdit

BackgroundEdit

"He's [Ravilan Wroth] not who I want to kill."
"Be patient. I have been."
―Jariad and Seelah Korsin plotting against Yaru Korsin, ten years before the attempted coup d'état[src]

In 5000 BBY, the Sith Empire starship Omen crash-landed on the Wild Space planet of Keshtah following a skirmish with a Jedi starfighter at Phaegon III. This starship carried a predominantly Tapani Human contingent of crew, miners, and soldiers who were led by Captain Yaru Korsin, a slave of the Sith Lord Naga Sadow. In addition, the Omen's passengers included 57 Red Sith, a large contingent of Massassi warriors, and a Houk named Gloyd.[4] With the help of Adari Vaal, a geologist who had been regarded by the native Keshiri as a heretic for challenging their creation beliefs, the Tribe installed themselves as the new ruling elite of the Keshiri living on Keshtah, one of Kesh's southern continents.[5] The Sith claimed to be the Protectors, ancient gods in Keshiri religion who were believed to have fought the malevolent Destructors in a "great battle."[6]

Shortly after his arrival, Yaru Korsin killed his estranged half-brother Devore Korsin and threw his body over the cliff. Devore's wife Seelah Korsin eventually learnt about her husband's death from Adari and vowed revenge against Yaru, who had established himself as the Grand Lord of the Tribe by 4975 BBY.Later, Seelah married her brother-in-law Yaru to seal a marriage alliance between the ship crew and miners. As Grand Consort, Seelah adopted eugenics policies aimed at "purifying" the Tribe and creating a new generation of pure and fit Human specimens. Behind the scenes, Seelah however plotted her husband's downfall and groomed her elder son Jariad Korsin into becoming the "tool" who would kill Yaru and then succeed him as Grand Lord.[2] In 4985 BBY, Seelah engineered the purge of the Red Sith, which ensured that the descendants of the Tribe remained purely Human. The Massassi had succumbed to an unknown pathogen shortly after their arrival on Kesh. This left Gloyd, a close friend of Yaru, as the only non-Human in the Tribe by 4975 BBY.[7]

Eventually, Yaru and Seelah sired a daughter named Nida Korsin. However, Seelah hated her younger offspring and merely regarded her as a "genealogical detail." In what was ostensibly a gesture of Sith trust in the Keshiri natives, the young Nida Korsin was boarded in one village after another with a series of Keshiri nursemaids and tutors, preventing her from receiving anything more than rudimentary training in the dark side of the Force. However, Yaru found a way around Seelah's machinations. With Gloyd's help, the Grand Lord staged the deaths of several loyal subordinates who taught Korsin in secret during the night. During the day, Nida, who became an able rider of uvaks, served as an aerial ambassador amongst the Keshiri, giving her an opportunity to win friends among the natives and to build a network of informants. Yaru was secretly grooming Nida as his successor, right under her mother's nose.[2]

Meanwhile, Adari Vaal realized that the Sith were not actually the Skyborn. Her resentment towards the Sith were fueled by the death of her older son Finn Vaal during a construction accident at the Kesh Sith Temple, the deaths of thousands of Keshiri during a mass Cyanogen silicate poisoning outbreak, and a new law which banned the native Keshiri from owning uvaks, winged reptilian beasts of burden which were regarded as a status symbol in Keshiri society. She and other like-minded Keshiri including several members of the Neshtovar, the former priestly elite that had ruled Keshtah, formed an underground resistance movement which aimed to overthrow and expel the Sith. Their plan involved stealing the Tribe's uvaks, which would give them an advantage over their Sith opponents.[2]

The Conspiracy UnfoldsEdit

"This doesn't look like the Northern Reaches to me, Jariad."
―Yaru Korsin confronting his step-son and his followers before the duel[src]

In 4975 BBY, Grand Lord Yaru Korsin commissioned the construction of a new block of buildings on Tahv's Circle Eternal, a large plaza which predated the arrival of the Lost Tribe. These buildings included a brand new capitol building, which was destined to be the official residence of the Grand Lord and Grand Consort. This building project was intended to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Tribe's arrival on Kesh. Since the Tribe had been unable to repair the Omen and to return to the stars, they had made plans to move from their mountainside temple to Tahv, which had become the capital of the Sith on Kesh. A skeleton team of Sith and Keshiri had already begun wrapping up affairs on the mountain. The Omen was sealed within an underground chamber that would protect it from the elements and vandals. Seelah also oversaw the relocation of the Tribe's med center to Tahv.[2]

The Founding celebrations were attended by large numbers of Keshiri subjects and their Sith overlords. Among those present were Korsin's wife Seelah and his Keshiri friend Adari Vaal, the Daughter of the Skyborn. Unknown to Yaru, both these women were plotting to overthrow him. For her planned coup d'état, Seelah enlisted the support of her son Jariad and several pro-Devore partisans among the ship crew. Their opposition to the Grand Lord was motivated by rumors about the Grand Lord withholding information about their marooned situation. During the public celebrations, Seelah secretly assured her son Jariad, who had become a High Lord, that vengeance was near. Following the Founding Celebrations, High Lord Jariad staged a mock duel with his friends from the Sith Sabers, a ceremonial honor detail that specialized in lightsaber feats.[2]

Unknown to other observers, Seelah and Jariad had stage this play fight as the first part of their plan—creating misdirection to mislead Grand Lord Korsin. In the presence of his step-father, Jariad easily bested his opponents in combat. As part of their ploy, the Sith Sabers had feigned incompetence in order for Jariad to obtain permission from Yaru to remove the Sabers to the Northern Reaches for a training mission. Grand Lord Korsin gave his stepson permission to move the Sith Sabers to the Northern Reaches. Meanwhile, Adari Vaal left Korsin's company on the pretext that she had to attend to "unfinished business" in town. In reality, she was meeting with other members of the Keshiri resistance, who were about to plan their first action: stealing uvaks from the Tribe.[2]

An Attempted Coup D'étatEdit

"Tell him [Jariad] about it! Tell him about how you saw his father [Devore] die, Yaru. Tell him how you killed him and threw his body onto the roacks, all to keep control of us!"
―Seelah Korsin confronting her husband Yaru Korsin over the death of her previous husband Devore Korsin[src]

Later, Yaru, Seelah and Adari Vaal congregated at the mountainside temple. Unknown to Yaru, Jariad and his Sith Sabers were hiding in the temple and were ready to stage their assassination attempt. After seeing to the Sith woman Orlenda's departure with a group of Keshiri servants and their supply cart, Seelah met her husband at the far end of the temple's plaza, which was situated between the domiciles and the Omen's shrine. As planned, the Grand Lord arrived with his entourage which consisted of the Houk Gloyd and four bodyguards. After exchanging greetings, Seelah gave Jariad and his Sabers the mental signal to commence their attack. Immediately, several Sith Sabers descended onto the plaza from the temple's living quarters, doorways, upper windows, rooftops and ramparts of the Omen's shrine.[2]

They quickly surrounded Yaru and his entourage, who were outnumbered by four to one. In response, Korsin and Gloyd's bodyguards formed a defensive huddle facing outward. When Jariad arrived with his lightsaber, Yaru reprimanded his step-son for abusing his hobby privileges and ordered him and his companions to return to Tahv. Jariad retorted that unlike his step-sister Nida he did not need hobbies and that enough time had been wasted. Addressing his father, Jariad announced that it was time to make his reckoning and that he was effecting a leadership succession within the Tribe. Korsin pretended not to take his step-son's threat seriously and ordered him to return to Tahv. Gloyd then insulted Jariad by telling him that he would not put him in charge of "mucking" out the uvak stables.[2]

Enraged, Jariad announced that he was the "future" of the Tribe since he was the "youngest of those born on high." Since all Sith after him were "Kesh-born", he believed that his offworld birth gave him a special right to lead the Tribe. Korsin angrily told his son that he was not special and that he had seen his like before. Seelah then entered the conversation and confronted Korsin about his role in the death of her first husband Devore. She demanded that Yaru tell her son about how his father had died at his hands. Seelah was joined by several of her loyal retainers who were armed with weapons. Before Korsin could respond, Jariad signaled for his Sabers to close in on his father. He had intended for his minions to take the first blows before moving in for the kill.[2]

Before Jariad's Sabers could attack, the Keshiri stable hands stole the uvaks that were stationed at the mountainside temple. The departure of the uvak provided just enough of a diversion to allow Yaru and his entourage to break the circle and flee to better ground. Jariad and his Sabers pursued their quarry through the temple complex. During the ensuing fighting, Korsin and Gloyd were separated. Jariad and his followers took care of Korsin and his bodyguards while Seelah and her loyal aides pursued Houk into another part of the complex. However, Gloyd fought back doggedly against his pursuers and even threw one of her aides through a skylight. The unfortunate individual fell to their death over the surrounding mountainside. Despite their numerical advantage, Jariad's Sith Sabers proved ineffective against Yaru's bodyguards, who fought fiercely against their attackers and managed to inflict many wounds on their attackers.[2]

The poor performance of Jariad's Sabers in combat reflected their lack of formal training. Despite his mother's objections, Jariad had insisted on being their only mentor but had only begun serious combat training in the past few weeks after Seelah had made the decision to strike. The theft of the uvaks placed both Sith factions on equal footing since neither side lacked the ability to escape. While Jariad had not anticipated this development, Korsin had been galvanized by the uvak disappearance. Jariad's Sabers gradually pushed Korsin and his remaining two Sabers to the reinforced slope besides Omen's temple. Jariad himself was locked in a lightsaber duel against his stepfather, who was standing on the same spot where Devore had decades earlier. The younger Korsin furiously slashed his step-father several times, inflicting several wounds on Yaru.[2]

The Rise of NidaEdit

"You're right, Jariad. It's time for me to go—but not without my last official act. And it's overdue."
―Yaru Korsin preparing to execute his estranged step-son Jariad[src]

At that point, Nida Korsin along with her Skyborn Rangers and several pro-Korsin partisans arrived at the mountainside temple to rescue her father and his entourage. Nida and her Rangers had already spent the morning thwarting the Keshiri's resistance plot to steal the Tribe's uvaks from Tahv. While Nida's force was a small one, they compensated for this with their fighting skills. Although the Skyborn Rangers appeared to be nothing more than a group of hobby-riders, they were in reality an elite group of trained Sith warriors who were secretly prepared to defend Grand Lord Yaru from any threats to his rule. Nida leapt from her uvak to the ground and then impaled one of Jariad's Sabers with her lightsaber. She then killed two more Sabers with her lightsaber and threw a third into the temple wall. Nida's forces were able to seize the cliff side with minimal resistance.[2]

Faced with a new unforeseen threat, Jariad retreated from his stepfather and joined his Sabers in their fight. Meanwhile, Gloyd retreated into Seelah's chamber where he made a final stand by detonating his proton detonator. The ensuing explosion killed Gloyd along with his pursuers and destroyed the entire room. Seelah survived the explosion but both her legs below the femur were crushed by falling debris, crippling the former Grand Consort permanently. Back on the mountainside, Nida parried with her step-brother Jariad, inflicting several wounds on him. Yaru Korsin was still alive but was grievously wounded. He then attempted to throw his wounded step-son over the cliff with the Force but failed due to his weakened state. Instead, his daughter Nida threw Jariad off the cliff. Thus, Devore's son met the same fate as his father.[2]

AftermathEdit

"Father tried to throw him [Jariad] over the side with the Force. He tried ... and when he failed, I did it."
―Nida Korsin's recollection of the skirmish[src]

Seelah and Jariad Korsin's attempted coup d'état was one of the two threats to Yaru Korsin's reign. The other one, the Keshiri uprising, was also defeated by his loyal daughter Nida and the Keshiri rebels fled into exile and eventually ended up in Alanciar, another continent that was home to another Keshiri civilization that the Sith did not know about.[8] Despite his victory, Yaru Korsin succumbed to his wounds and died shortly after the battle. Prior to his death, Yaru commended his legacy to Nida, a change which was ratified by the three surviving High Lords; officially making her the new Grand Lord.[2] In his final hours, he also delivered a testament which was recorded in a holocron, where he affirmed Nida as his successor and outlined the structure of the Tribe. Yaru also decreed that the spouses and household laborers of future Grand Lords should be put to death following the death of the reigning Grand Lord. In addition, he ordered that his estranged wife Seelah be banished to the mountainside temple for the rest of her life. His Testament became the guiding document of the Tribe for the next two millennia.[8]

Finally, Yaru bequeathed his daughter another gift—a map of a previously unknown continent far across the sea, discovered from examination of the last visual data taken by the Omen twenty-five years prior. Knowing that the continent was inhabited, Korsin was sworn to keep its existence a secret, only to be revealed when the people truly needed to know. This continent turned out to be Alanciar, which was home to a highly developed and militarized Keshiri civilization which came to regard Adari Vaal as its founder. In 3000 BBY, the Caretaker Varner Hilts discovered this map and was able to use it to reunite the Tribe and end the centuries of infighting known as the Time of the Rot.[5]

As punishment for her role in instigating the coup d'état, Seelah Korsin was banished to the mountainside temple. Under the orders of the new Grand Lord Nida Korsin, the other Sith were ordered to evacuate the mountain to honor Yaru's passing. As long as Nida lived, no Sith or Keshiri were allowed to visit the mountain. To enforce that, the path leading to the Temple was barricaded with massive boulders. Seelah survived on daily rations of fruits and vegetables which were carried by uvak in hejarbo-shoot crates. Nida went on to rule as Grand Lord for the next seventy-nine years, which was still regarded as a record as of 3000 BBY. While she produced an heir named Donellan, he died before his mother. In response, Nida instituted a meritocratic succession system where future Grand Lords were elected from the Circle of Lords.[3]

Behind the scenesEdit

The Duel near the Kesh Sith Temple serves as the main plot narrative of John Jackson Miller's e-book Lost Tribe of the Sith: Savior, which was released on October 27, 2010. The events of that skirmish are told through the points of view of Grand Lord Yaru Korsin and his estranged wife High Lady Seelah Korsin]]. According to Miller's production notes on his website at Faraway Press, Miller had intended to use the animosity between Yaru and Seelah which culminated in this skirmish to explain the Lost Tribe of Sith's tradition of executing the dead spouse of a deceased Grand Lord, an element which first surfaced in the Fate of the Jedi series.[9]

AppearancesEdit

AppearancesEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

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