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Neera

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"You're Force Fifty-seven, I take it."
"Obviously!"
―Varner Hilts and Neera's first meeting[src]

Neera was the scar-faced Force-sensitive leader of the Force 57 on the 3000 BBY. She was a big-built Human woman who had many scars on her face and her hand had only three webbed fingers, but was the least gruesome of her group. As a member of Force 57, Neera revered the "Other 57"—the Red Sith members of the original crew of the Omen, the Sith starship which brought the ancestors of the Lost Tribe of Sith to the planet Kesh during the Great Hyperspace War. Neera and her fellow Force 57 members had a hostile relationship with the other Sith factions particularly the Sisters of Seelah and the Korsinite League, which revered and worshipped several members of the Korsin family, which had played an important role in the purge of the Red Sith.

In 3000 BBY, Neera along with the other faction leaders visited the Sith capital of Tahv to attend Testament Day, where the testament of the Tribe's founder Yaru Korsin was read to the Sith Tribe. During that Testament Day, the assembled Sith leadership discovered a hologram transmission which revealed that the Tribe was actually descended from slaves of the Sith Lord Naga Sadow, who was a member of the same species as the "Other 57". The Tribe quickly learnt that they were not "special" and this drove many of its members into a homicidal rampage during the Great Crisis.

Neera abandoned her beliefs during that crisis and many of her fellow Force 57 adherents were killed during the fighting between various Sith factions. Later, she and the other surviving members of Force 57 supported a construction project by Edell Vrai and Korsin Bentado which sought to purge the last relic of the Tribe's shameful history by destroying the Omen, which was housed beneath the Kesh Sith Temple. Neera later supported the Caretaker Varner Hilts' ascension to the Grand Lordship, which ended the Time of the Rot and ushered in the Hilts Restoration.

BiographyEdit

Force 57Edit

"Seelah banished our kind, so she could have blissful perfection!"
―Neera[src]

Neera was a member of the Lost Tribe of Sith, the Human descendants of a group of Sith led by Yaru Korsin who had become stranded on the planet Kesh during the Great Hyperspace War. She grew up during the Time of the Rot, a millennium of turmoil and anarchy which followed the Night of the Upside-Down Meteor that saw the death of Grand Lord Lillia Venn. Neera became the leader of Force 57, a group of Sith who emulated the memory of the original 57 "Different Ones" aboard the Omen and their leader Ravilan Wroth. Since Seelah Korsin, the wife of the Tribe's founder Yaru Korsin and the administrator of the Sith sickwards had destroyed all records relating to the 57 Red Sith, the only extant information on the original 57 was a series of Keshiri tales which described them as being deformed in some way and being the opposite of Seelah's "perfect" Human specimens.[1]

Thus, the adherents of Force 57 did not know that the "Different Ones" were actually members of the Sith species, whose members were distinguished by their red skin and facial tentacles. Force 57's membership consisted primarily of deformed and misshaped Humans on Kesh. Members of the cult were also distinguished by their self-inflicted scars. The cult had a hostile relationship with other factions particularly the Sisters of Seelah, a cult which revered the memory of Seelah Korsin, and the Korsinite League, another cult which revered and emulated the Tribe's founder Yaru Korsin and his daughter Nida Korsin, who later became his successor. The Sisters particularly their leader Iliana Merko regarded Force 57's members as "human trash" while the Bentado Korsin, the leader of the Korsinites, saw them as "defilers" who imperiled the Tribe, which they believed to be the body of Yaru Korsin.[1]

Testament DayEdit

Neera: "Shut up, old man! We want to know why she's [Iliana Merko] here!"
Iliana Merko: "Don't answer that cretin [Neera], Hilts!"
Korsin Bentado: "Don't you raise your voice in this place, woman [Iliana]! The house of Korsin was no place for Seelah—and no place for you [Neera]!"
―Neera embroiled in verbal match with Iliana Merko and Korsin Bentado[src]

In 3000 BBY, Neera and her followers gathered outside the Circle Eternal palace in Tahv eight days prior to Testament Day. Neera and the other Sith factions had learnt that Iliana Merko, the leader of the Sisters of Seelah which revered the memory of Seelah Korsin, had attempted to manipulate the Caretaker Varner Hilts into presenting a fake version of Yaru Korsin's Testament that would favor Seelah's legacy and those who served her: the Sisters of Seelah. However, Iliana's scheme failed because the actual Testament was a holographic recording of Yaru himself which was stored in a holocron, an ancient Sith and Jedi technology used for storing information and communications.[1]

Neela and her supporters entered the capitol building, the former residence of the Grand Lord and his Consort, and became embroiled in a skirmish with the Sisters and the Korsinite League. Several members of Force 57 were killed during this brief but violent skirmish. However, Hilts managed to interrupt the fighting and reminded the factions that Testament Day was only eight days away. Neera then demanded to know why Iliana was here. When Iliana refused to answer Neera's question and instead insulted her, Korsin reprimanded Iliana and reiterated that the "House of Korsin" was no place for both of the League's opponents: the Sisters of Seelah and Force 57. After Korsin had introduced himself and reiterated the beliefs of the Korsinite League, Neera reiterated her earlier question and confirmed to Hilts that she and he followers were from Force 57.

In a deliberate attempt to provoke Iliana, Neera also attacked Seelah Korsin for banishing the original 57 so she could have her "blissful perfection." She also criticized Varner Hilts for not including a painting of Ravilan and Gloyd, the Houk bodyguard of the Korsins, in the Pantheon. In response, Iliana retorted that Seelah was right to "purge the defectives" and was about to fight with Neera when they were interrupted by Varner Hilts, who was trying to maintain the peace at his research archive. Bentado expressed his agreement with Hilts and then announced that the "defilers" had to pay the penalty of death. He vowed to destroy his opponents in combat in the capitol building and its surround grounds, where the other Sith factions had already gathered. However, Hilts was determined that no violence would happen on that day and offered to do a reading of the Testament.[1]

However, the dogmatic Bentado and his supporters refused to accept a reading of Yaru Korsin's Testament on any day but the designated date for Testament Day. In an attempt to mollify Bentado, Hilts convinced his Keshiri assistant Jaye Vuhld to present his recent findings that the Keshiri calendar was actually eight days behind the Galactic Standard Calendar since the Tribe's Sandpipes flowed different from the chronometer aboard the Omen, the ship which had brought the Tribe's ancestors to Kesh two thousand years ago. This meant that Testament Day fell today, which also coincided with the Festival of Nida's Rise, a holiday held every 79 years which commemorated the ascendancy of Nida to the Grand Lordship. Neera and her followers were initially disinterested in Jaye's calculations and Neera herself asked what difference time would make. However, they and the other Sith realized that Jaye's calculations were corrected.[1]

With Hilts having legal grounds to convene the "Pantheon's Peace, Neera and her two rivals temporarily annulled their hostilities and deactivated their lightsabers. They then removed their followers and brought the other seventeen faction leaders. For the reading, Varner Hilts presented the holocron that contained the holographic recording the Testament of Yaru Korsin. While the Testament contained nothing relating to the "Different Ones" and only added fuel to the tensions between the various Sith factions, Hilts discovered an older recording that turned out to be a holographic message from the Sith Lord Naga Sadow to his subordinate Captain Yaru Korsin. When Neera saw this recording, she asked what was that "thing", not knowing that Sadow was from the same species as the "Different Ones."[1]

The recorded communications revealed that the Lost Tribe were actually descended from Tapani slaves of the Naga Sadow, a Red Sith who had led an invasion of the Galactic Republic during the Great Hyperspace War in 5000 BBY. It also transpired that Yaru Korsin was merely a lowly ship captain who had been tasked with delivering a mining crew to Phaegon III aboard the Omen. In addition, the "Different Ones" turned out to be members of the Red Sith, a red-skinned humanoid species with protruding eyebrows and facial tentacles. All the assembled Sith including Neera were horrified to about learn the true history of the Lost Tribe's origins. She commented that it was not "Sith" but rather "madness." In an attempt to hide the "inglorious" history of the Tribe, Iliana Merko destroyed the holocron. In addition, Neera also vowed to kill any Keshiri, purple-skinned sentient indigenous to Kesh who were ruled by the Tribe, who discovered this secret. However, Iliana argued that this action was not necessary since she had already destroyed the holocron containing the recording.[1]

The Great CrisisEdit

"All life is profane. You saw our alien masters. You know just how disgusting life can be."
―Neera[src]

Following that year's disastrous Pantheon's Peace, Neera along with the other Sith leaders returned to their factions, who were camped outside the capitol building on the grounds of the Circle Eternal. Despite the attempts of the Tribe's leadership to suppress this information, it was believed that a drunk Sith revealed the true history of the Tribe to his followers. This sparked a series of violent riots and killings known as the Great Crisis which devastated much of Keshtah Minor, the continent which was ruled by the Tribe. The Sith, who had been indoctrinated for generations into believing that they were the Protectors, gods in Keshiri religion, realized that they were not "special". This devastated the Sith population on Keshtah and drove many of them into a homicidal rampage. As a result of this outbreak of violence, Keshtah's cities were razed to the ground.[1]

During the Great Crisis, Neera and Force 57 took part in the fighting and fought with other Sith factions. Eventually, Force 57 like the other factions succumbed to infighting and subsequently fragmented. During the fighting, Neera and her followers fought with Iliana Merko, who inflicted several wounds and disfigurements on her opponents. This led several Sith belligerents including several members of Force 57 to seek retribution against the "Chief Sister." By the end of the fighting, most of Force 57 had been wiped out with Neera and a few supporters being among the few survivors. The revelations of the Tribe's "inglorious past" also caused many members of Force 57 including Neera to abandon their cherished beliefs about the "Other Fifty-seven." Rather than being outcasts who had been unjustly cast out of the Tribe, these "Different Ones" had actually been the alien Red Sith slave masters of the Tribe.[2]

In the end, Neera joined forces with several surviving members of the Tribe led by Edell Vrai, a young member of the Golden Destiny faction, and Korsin Bentado. These two Sith men wanted to destroy the last relic of the Tribe's "inglorious history": the ancient Sith starship Omen, which was housed beneath the Kesh Sith Temple in the Takara Mountains. Edell justified his motivations on the grounds that the Omen had been nothing but a "carrier of chattel." Likewise, Bentado regarded the starship as the cause of the Tribe's imprisonment on Kesh and an "omen of despair." While these Sith factions had fought each other for centuries, they regarded their planned destruction of the Omen as a final act of cooperation. 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.[2]

For this plan, Edell planned to topple the temple's giant watchtower onto the chamber containing the Omen, crushing the ship. Using his expertise in mathematics and engineering, 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. Neera participated in this project and threw her enormous muscled back into the work alongside the other Sith, many of whom had been her former opponents. This construction project clashed with another expedition comprising of the Caretaker Varner Hilts, his Keshiri assistant Jaye Vuhld, and Iliana which wanted to explore the Temple and find Yaru Korsin's secrets, which Hilts believed had the potential to save the Tribe from their downward spiral of destruction.[2]

Edell's construction team discovered the presence of Hilts' party after Hilts sent Jaye to obtain glowrods for them to examine a secret map room. As a result, Jaye was murdered by Bentado Korsin and the Sith party stumbled on Hilts and Iliana. Neera, Bentado and Edell had all been hunting for the "chief sister" Iliana, who had inflicted numerous injuries on them and their supporters. They wanted to settle their unfinished business with Iliana by killing her. However, they were stopped by Hilts who demanded to know who had murdered Jaye, his best friend. Jaye's killer 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.[2]

Edell, the more moderate 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 "Keshtah Major" or Alanciar.[2]

A Wide PathEdit

"Where no path existed, you [Varner Hilts] found one wide enough for all. Alone, you have my trust."
"All hail Varner Hilts—the new Grand Lord!"
―Neera and the other Sith leaders submitting to Varner Hilts[src]

After explaining the significance of his discovery for the Tribe, Varner Hilts read a message from Yaru to his daughter Nida Korsin, which argued that the hidden knowledge of "Keshtah Major" was a cause that could one day be used to reunite the Tribe. Hilts also 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 these guides had been destroyed with 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."[2]

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.[2]

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 members also followed suit and bowed before the Grand Lord. Shortly later, Bentado himself nodded and bowed to his knees. He praised Hilts for redeeming the Tribe's faith in Korsin. Finally, Neera herself knelt and praised Hilts 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.[2]

Following the accession of Varner Hilts to the Grand Lordship, Neera accompanied her former enemies including Korsin Bentado and the Golden Destiny who traveled across mainland Keshtah to announce the good news about the discover of Keshtah Major and the restoration of the Tribe's governing system. As an ally of the Grand Lord, Neera later presumably attended the Wedding of Varner Hilts and Iliana Merko, and participated in the reconstruction of Keshtah Minor.[2] In 2975 BBY, the Tribe succeeded in conquering Alanciar.[3]

Personality and traitsEdit

"This place is disgusting! You see who's missing from these paintings, don't you? Where's Ravilan, the leader of the Different Ones? Why, they don't even bother to show Gloyd—the one the Korsins let live, like a pet! Your precious Pantheon is missing members!"
"You are too! Seelah was right to purge the defectives! And we're going to do it again!"
―An argument between Neera and Iliana[src]

Neera was a big-built and scar-faced Human Sith woman. Since she practiced ritual mutilation, one of her hands only had three fingers. Until the events of 3000 BBY, Neera revered the "original 57 non-Human members" of the Omen's crew, who were believed t have been deformed in some way and the opposite of Seelah Korsin's pure specimens. She and her fellow members of Force 57 despised and hated the Korsin family for excluding the "original 57" from the history of the Lost Tribe of Sith. Due to her religious zeal, Neera was willing to fight and kill anyone who challenged her beliefs. Following the fateful Testament Day that year, Neera realized that the "original 57" had actually been the Red Sith overlords of the Tribe's ancestors.[1] She repudiated her former beliefs and supported Edell Vrai and Korsin Bentado's efforts to destroy the Omen in order to purge the last relic of the Tribe's "inglorious history." Later, she wholehearted supported Varner Hilts' efforts to reach the continent of Alanciar.[2]

Power and abilitiesEdit

Neera was capable of wielding a lightsaber in combat.[1] She was also well-built and had an enormous muscled back, which she put to use during the Tribe's attempt to destroy the Omen by crashing the tower of the Kesh Sith temple onto the chamber storing the starship.[2]

Behind the scenesEdit

Neera first appeared as a supporting non-point-of-view character in John Jackson Miller's Lost Tribe of the Sith eBook series. She made her debut in the short story Lost Tribe of the Sith: Pantheon, which was released on July 18, 2011. Neera also appeared in its sequel Lost Tribe of the Sith: Secrets, which was released on March 5, 2012.

AppearancesEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

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