She just managed to spin away in time, his two blade clattering against the stone wall, sending a few sparks flying. By the time she had swung her own blade towards his undefended back he had kicked himself off the wall and parried her blade with two of his own. He was quick and the Twi’lek knew she had to be quicker.
As he pushed his two blades down onto her she could feel his weight threatning to break her back. She gritted her teeth and despised the fact that she needed both hands on the hilt of her own blade simply to resist. A thought flashed through her mind and she kicked out at one of Ulthius’ legs, causing him to fall, before she jumped back to a safe distance.
The Sith Lord watched impassively on, patiently waiting for a victor so he could return to his chambers.
Ulthius cursed and jumped to his feet.
“Dirty Slave, I’ll rip you to pieces!”
A cloud of Darkness surrounded him and Talitha only just had enough time to put up a Force Barrier before he let out a terrifying Force Scream, which reverberated around the circular armoury. Various items shuddered and fear crept into Talitha’s mind and restricted her breathing.
Through fear…we gain victory.
It was a partial understanding of the Sith Code, but it was enough and, with her right hand now free she cast a fierce shard of Force Lightening which interrupted the Warrior’s scream and sent him flying back towards the wall. The acrid smell of burning flesh permeated the chamber and the Sith Lord coughed to clear his senses from the putrid aroma.
“Right, slave, that’s enough.”
Ulthius wiped blood from his face and simultanously lauched his blades, using the Force to launch them at different angles. The Twi’lek trembled but couldn’t focus on both blades at once. She managed to slash the smaller one away but as she turned to try and miss the larger one it caught her back on its way back to its owner, causing her to cry out in pain. With an evil grin, Ulthius launched himself at her again, blade bearing down torwards her chest.
She drew herself up and used the Force to push him back, which caught him off-balance. Using her new healing techniques she tried to stem her own bleeding with some success, but the pain kept shooting up her back and into her head. With the split second advantage she had she jumped at him, blade in her left hand and lightening in her right. He saw her coming and avoided the lightening, its crackling catching an ancient suit of armour, but her blade gashed his right arm near the shoulder and she leapt away. With a cry of anger, Ulthius rolled away, his chest heaving from the exertion and pain.
“Filthy tactics, slave scum. That’s my sword arm”, he spat at her.
“No worse bringing than bringing two swords to duel,” she answered quietly.
“You’ll still pay.”
He threw his blade into the air and caught it in his left hand, blood from his shoulder slowly oozing through his armour.
“Time to finish this”
He pointed his blade at her and she reciprocated. They circled the chamber, their eyes fixed on the others’. Talitha’s breathing quickened, trying to sense his next move. She kept her blade in her left hand and wiped her right down her tunic. Eons seemed to pass, before he suddenly stepped forward with a series of slashes designed to cause most damage. She screamed as one move sliced her leg and another cut her cheek almost to the eye. Doubling back, she tried in vain to push the pain away, but her cheek was already swelling, restricting her eyesight. She did her best with her remaining, depleted energy to defend herself with more Lightening, but as she did the Lightening Strikes met his blade and he advanced with more purpose, the streaks of Force power shortening by the second. With an insidious smile, he stepped on her toes and pushed his blade towards her throat.
It was then that a small glint caught the Twi’leks eye and she reached out her hand and with the Force caught up Ulthius’ abandoned shorter blade and pushed it with all her might into his chest. His eyes bulged with terror as the blade turned inside of him. The arm holding the blade quivvered before losing control, the metal clanging harshly on the stone floor.
Talitha couldn’t look, but kept her eyes shut until the trembling stopped and then, scared of the outcome let go and fell back against the wall. The Rattataki fell forward and slumped to the ground, motionless.
A silence fell in the chamber and Talitha cried her head between her knees, the pain and stress flowing freely from her. She put her hands to her face and felt the swelling, but having used all her Force energies, she was powerless to do anything about it. She hugged herself, a sudden coldness overtaking her. Once in control of her emotions, she tried to remember the breathing techniques from Force Meditation classes, but peace was not forthcoming.
“I believe this is yours Acolyte.”
The Sith Lords cold, calm voice brought her to her senses and she looked up, the Warblade being offered to her. She took it from him and dragged herself to her feet.
“Th- th- thank you my Lord,” she stammered.
“Thanks is not required. The victory is yours. The droids will clean up the mess here ready for tomorrow’s Acolytes. You should go back to your Masters.”
She nodded respectfully to him before limping out of the chamber, the wound in her leg still painfully fresh. Yes, she was the victor. But the cost of victory was higher than she could bear.
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