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The Art pf Deception Chapter 21Star Wars Darth Zannah The Art of Deception By JAM4077 Based on the Darth Bane Trilogy by Drew Karpyshyn CHAPTER 21After a moment, Zannah woke up from her fume inducing nap. At least, she felt as if she woke up. All the members of the dream-walkers were gone and the chamber itself gave off a yellowish gold aura. She looked down and saw that she herself was giving off this aura. She looked around her surroundings and noticed a glowing green crystal resting on the table where Lea-Chi made her sleep powder.“I guess I’m not awake then,” Zannah said, her voice echoing throughout the chamber.“No. You’re not,” Zannah heard Darth Nox’s voice said.Zannah turned around to find Nox approaching the current Dark Lord of the Sith. Nox stood out from the golden environment due to the blue aura around her. Nox amused herself with the environment around her.“Oh, this place brings back some memories,” Nox said.Before Zannah had time to respond, the sounds of screeching began fill the cavern. Zannah looked past Nox and saw a pack of small reptilian creature with small arms running by on their hinge legs. Their long tails whipped about through the air. Zannah instantly recognized these creatures as Neeks, which were native to the planet of Ambria. One neek stopped dead in its tracks and turned its attention towards Zannah. Zannah noticed that this particular neek’s was wobbling unnatural. It was as if this creature’s neck was broken in some way.“Playing games, my master?” Zannah asked in amusement.Then, the neek’s beck mouth twisted itself into a wicked smile and disappeared with the other neeks.“You better get used to that,” Nox said. “It will get worse from here. What’s that?”Zannah looked up as a bouncer with a couple of arrows sticking out of its golden glowing body of green fur. Zannah recognized it instantly as she always dreamed about Laa since her death.“Come, Rain. Come,” Laa said before floating down the cavern. Zannah followed suit with Nox not too far behind.After a few moments walking through an endless cavern, Zannah and Nox came across another blast from Zannah’s past. Standing in the middle of the cavern was a young Twi’lek who was once a high-ranking member of a small extremist group determined to bring down the Republic. Despite the golden glow emanating from the Twi’lek’s tall and perfectly proportionate body, Zannah could make out the Twi’lek’s very rare red skin tone.The Twi’lek’s dark, smoldering eyes fell upon Zannah and a bright smile parted his soft, full lips.“Rainiah!” The Twi’lek shouted in delight. “It’s so good to see you again.”“Hello, Kel. Or should I say, Darth Bane,” Zannah said as she approached the Twi’lek before her. “Having fun digging up my past?”“This part of your past was quite intriguing, my former apprentice,” said Darth Bane’s voice through the Twi’lek’s mouth. Although, Zannah noticed something different about Bane’s voice. Instead of changing from between very deep and high pitch, Bane’s voice sounded exactly as Zannah had remembered it; deep with a slight gravel to it.“It has intrigued me since the day you asked if this Twi’lek and his extremist group would succeed in killing the former Chancellor Valorum,” Bane continued. “While your excuse about the orbalisks affecting my mind proved to be correct, I never stopped wondering if there wasn’t an ulterior motive behind the questioning.“It got worse when your cousin came back into the picture,” the specter said as his appearance changed. The form that Darth Bane took was that of a dark scruffy haired hermit with a long beard and one hand. There was wildness in this forms eyes, but Zannah still recognized them as those that belonged to her late cousin, Tomcat.“You’re familial attachment almost brought an end to the Sith,” Darth Bane recalled. “To all that I have worked so hard to build.”“If I recall correctly, I severed those familial attachments I used my Sith magic to drive my cousin mad,” Zannah recounted, showing no sign of remorse in her voice. “I sent my mad cousin out to face death at the hands of the Jedi; making them believe that Sith had been destroyed for good. As I recall, you were pleased with my work and resolve.”Darth Bane returned to his normal ghostly form and said, “And now, you risk the survival the Sith once more with newfound romance with the Jedi.”“Once Khan has been dealt with, there will be no need to worry about Jedi.”“Forgive me if I don’t share your enthusiasm,” Bane said. Zannah noticed that his voice had changed again, going back to fluctuating between deep and high pitch. “Fortunately for me, I have found another avenue to ensure the survival of the Sith. I just need to wait for the right moment.“You’re time is over, Bane. Now, be gone!”Darth Bane raised his hands and unleashed a fury of Force lightning upon his former apprentice. Before she had time to draw her saberstaff, Zannah woke up.Zannah observed her surroundings. Darth Bane and Darth Nox were gone, but she was surround by Lea-Chi and a male dream-walker. The chamber of the dream-walkers and caverns they inhabit were not emitting the golden glow.“You’ve survived, outsider,” Lea-Chi said. “Well done.”“Are you going to ask what I saw?” Zannah said as she rose to her feet.“What you saw is personal. So, we will not ask. What’s important now is that you are now a dream-walker.”“Thank you. Now, the mind-healing ritual?”“Unfortunately, those us living dream-walkers don’t know what the ritual. You must speak with the spirit of Mar-Da to learn it.”“Who is Mar-Da?”“I am a guardian,” a deep, metallic, and distant voice said. “The knowledge you seek is forbidden, outsider. Especially to you!”“Why is that?” Zannah asked.“Ask Nox,” said the voice of Mar-Da.“I see you are still mad at me, Mar-Da,” said Darth Nox’s voice.“Mad? You bound me to your living form and I remained there until your death,” Mar-Da roared.“Mar-Da, I don’t answer for the actions of Darth Nox,” Darth Zannah spoke up. “All I can answer for are my own. I have done no wrong to you or Voss. Nor do I wish to. But another spirit I carry in my body could change that. If that happens, Voss will be in danger.”After a moment of silence, the spirit of Mar-Da appeared before Zannah. The appearance of Mar-Da didn’t startle any of the dream-walkers in the chamber. The spirit stared at Zannah, looking into her soul. “You speak truth, outsider,” Mar-Da said.“Does that mean you tell me about the ritual?” Zannah asked.“Better than that. We will perform it,” Mar-Da said. “Lea-Chi, bring forth the dream-walker Gormak.”“I understood, Mar-Da,” Lea-Chi said with a bow and then, left to fulfill her tasks.“A Gormak? Why?” Zannah asked.“The Gormak must use the dream-rock. The Gormak, who walks in their dreams, must feed the dream-rock. The dream-rock transforms the nightmares.“And what is the dream-rock?”“The dream-rock is the dream-rock,” Mar-Da explained. “There are no others like it. The dream-rock turns nightmares into flesh. The nightmare is the disease. Defeat the nightmares and you will defeat the disease.”“I think I understand.”“Then, you will not bind me like your predecessor?”“You have my word.”“Are you sure?” Darth Nox intruded. “He’s quite powerful. He may prove useful to you.”“I’ve got enough problems with Bane,” Zannah counter. “I don’t need you and this spirit going at it.”“You are very wise, outsider. Safe journey,” Mar-Da commended before disappearing.Zannah mediated in the spot where she had her dream. Her thoughts wondered why Bane’s voice changed during their conversation in her dream. Was it some form of trick? Or was this an unknown by-product of being unable to fully complete the Essence Transfer ritual? Once she started thinking about Essence Transfer, an idea popped in Zannah’s head. There was little evidence to support it, but Zannah knew one way to prove it.The sound of footsteps approaching caused Zannah to open her eyes. Lea-Chi had returned to the chamber. Accompanying Lea-Chi was a female Gormak with blue eyes and shorter frills that adorn her flat, noseless face. The earth-toned robes the Gormak wore were adorned with bones and claws from beasts the Gormak populace hunted.“May I present Grin-Ta,” Lea-Chi introduced. “She will be you aide in the ritual.”“Is she well experienced with this ritual?” Zannah asked.Grin-Ta spoke to Zannah, but she was speaking in a language the dark lord couldn’t understand. Lea-Chi listen to Grin-Ta’s words and said, “She say has taken part in this ritual a couple of times. All of them successful.”“I see. Well, let us begin then,” Zannah, said.Lea-Chi went to the table and ground up 2 large seeds. She poured the contents into two separate bowls and ignited the contents. Zannah and Grin-Ta got into a mediation position as Lea-Chi brought the bowls to them. Zannah and Grin-Ta inhaled the fumes and they fell asleep once again. Lea-Chi and another dream-walker eased them down on the stone patio.Zannah “awake” in the dream world once again. Grin-Ta was already up, making her way to the table before the obelisk. She picked up the glowing green crystal, which Zannah guessed was the dream-rock.“You’re up,” Grin-Ta said. “Good. We can begin.”“Wait. I can understand you?” Zannah said as she got to her feet.“We are in the dream world. Why should we not be able to understand each other?” Grin-Ta pointed out.“You make a fair point. Now, what’s next?”“Now, we find your nightmares. I use the rock to transform them for you to fight. Once the nightmares are defeated, you take the rock and receive healing.”“I see. Let’s hope this works.”“What is that?” Grin-Ta asked. Zannah smiled and turned to sight her long, dead friend, Laa.“Hurry, Rain! Hurry,” Laa said telepathically as it floated out of the chamber in hurry pace. Zannah and Grin-Ta the hurrying Bouncer through the caverns until it disappeared before a chamber that Zannah had never came across during her initiation. She and Grin-Ta could hear the sound of battle inside the chamber.The two dream-walkers entered the chamber to see the spirits of Darth Nox and Darth Bane engaged in combat. The crimson blades of their curved hilt sabers clashed as their owners spun and moved as if their fight was a dance. Darth Nox’s Soresu fighting style was holding well against Darth Bane’s fighting style, which seemed different then what Zannah knew.Instead of using his over handed strikes and counter-strike parries of Djem-So, Bane seemed to be using a Niman fighting style, which he would change with Force Lightning. Zannah jumped in, unleashing a powerful Force wave as she came landing on the ground. Zannah’s attack knocked both Nox and Bane off their feet.Grin-Ta joined Zannah’s side and asked, “Which one do you want me to use the dream-rock on?”“Him!” Zannah said, pointing at Bane.Grin-Ta touched the runes that adorn the top of the dream-rock, which caused the rock to glow more. She moved the rock downwards, which caused a spark of green energy to shoot out of it. It wrapped itself around Darth Bane’s wrist. Bane tried to rip the energy off, but it wouldn't budge.“What is this?” Darth Bane asked in a panic.Grin-Ta made the same downward motion with the dream-rock. Another spark of green energy shoot out and wrapped around Bane’s other wrist. Grin-Ta raised the dream-rock into the air, which caused Bane to be hoisted into the air. Bane struggled to break free from his bonds.“Something’s not right,” Grin-Ta said as sweat rolled down her green skin. “He should’ve been made flesh by now.”“Try hard!” Zannah ordered.Grin-Ta concentrated harder and Darth Bane’s struggling died down. Then, in a bright flash of light, the dream-rock fulfilled the first part of its task. Darth Bane was made flesh again. His skull shaped helmet was gone, revealing the hairless dome of his head. Black tattoos outlined his yellow Sith eyes.Zannah turned her attention away from her former master to the other being that emerged from Grin-Ta’s use of the dream-rock. The other being was humanoid, wearing clothing and armor of red and orange from the ancient times of the Sith. On the top of his head was tall, flat headdress that was reminiscent of a high priest and was trimmed with gold. His face was gaunt, like the skin had sunken into his skull. And his nose was gone, showing off the nose bridge of the skull. His yellow Sith eyes stared at Zannah and a wide smile appeared on his face.“So, you figured it out, former apprentice of Bane?” the Sith spirit said with amusement.“Indeed, Darth Andeddu,” Zannah said.“What gave me away?”“You’re voice. When I met Bane earlier, his sounded exactly as how I remembered it. Then it changed to all the times we’ve encountered one another since my talismans were destroyed.”“Well done, Zannah,” Andeddu applauded. “Your old master thought you wouldn’t figure it out.”“I doubt that, Andeddu. If you knew my master well enough, he wouldn’t care if I succeeded in stopping you plans or failed as long as the Order of the Sith Lords continued. An individual may die, but the Sith are eternal.”“Well said, my former apprentice,” Darth Bane said.“If that was the case, Darth Bane, then why did you seek my holocron and the knowledge of Essence Transfer,” Andeddu asked in assument. “Did you not have doubts about your apprentice then?”“I did have my doubts because I believed that Zannah was waiting until I was weak before taking the mantle of Dark Lord for herself,” Bane explained. “I thought her weak and unworthy of my legacy for using such an old Sith tactic. I sought your knowledge for the sole purpose of living long enough to train another. But Zannah has proved herself more than worthy to be my successor. And if she needs me to be bound to her to help her further the Grand Plan, then so be it.”“That’s quite admirable, but your faith in this Rule of Two is a bit faulty,” Andeddu said.“What do you mean?” Zannah asked.“Don’t you know, Zannah? You admitted to your apprentice that you felt the pull of the Light. And Sith have been know to be redeemed from time to time. Just like the man who inspired the Rule of Two: Darth… Raven, was it?”“Are you suggesting that we follow the ways of old of training more than one apprentice?” Bane shouted. “A lot of good that did you. You were betrayed and overthrown by your own followers like countless others who came before and after you.”“A valid point, Lord Bane. But there will come a time when your precious Rule of Two will become obsolete,” Andeddu said. “When that happens, the Sith of your order will abandon it by either having more than two Sith existing at any given point or try to learn the secrets that I have learned: the secret of immortality.”“And yet, here you are. A spirit without flesh,” Darth Nox pointed out.“Not yet,” Andeddu added. “And it’s all thanks to Zannah here.”“What do you mean?” Zannah asked.Andeddu grinned and pointed to his left. Zannah’s eyes shifted to a section of the chamber that she failed to notice due to the fighting. At the far end of the chamber wall was a large crystal that illuminated the entire chamber in a white light. It’s size and shape resembled the large kyber crystals used to power various Sith weapons of war. Every now and then the glow of the colors would shift to shades of yellow, blue, green, and purple. A hum, which sounded like a lullaby to Zannah’s ears, emitted from the crystal. Zannah’s feet carried her over to the crystal, as she felt drawn to it.“Zannah, wait! It could be a trap,” Bane pointed out.“No. It isn’t,” Zannah said as she continued her approach. “I can’t explain. But… it feels like… this presence… is a part of me.”Zannah continued her walk towards the crystal as she prepared her senses to alarm her for anything that Darth Andeddu might pull or something else altogether. As she approached, Zannah could hear another sound emanating from the crystal. With the entire humming going on, it was hard to make out what this new sound was.Once Zannah was about an arm’s reach of the crystal was she able to identify the new sound. It was the sound of a rapid heartbeat. Zannah closed her eyes and adjusted her Force perception to identify the presence in the crystal. As Zannah concentrated on the crystal, Bane and Nox drew their sabers in case Andeddu tried something. Andeddu barely moved from his spot as he continued to eye Zannah. Grin-Ta stepped back to avoid the big fight that was to come.After a few moments, Zannah finally understood what Andeddu was planning, something that she should’ve realized during their conversation on Alderaan. But she was so focused on heal herself that she let her guard down. And now, she was pregnant with child or children of her sworn enemy. Upon this realization, her motherly instinct, buried deep inside Zannah’s soul erupted into a fury of anger, hate, and protection. It’s moved all rational thought and awareness about who was an ally or enemy out from her mind. All she could think about was that she had to protect her unborn offspring by any means necessary.
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Hey, so I've been following this really awesome fan film for Vader, figured you guys would like it. It's by a YouTuber called "Star Wars Theory" and it's based eight months after Revenge of the Sith. But I'll just leave the link and let you guys see the rest for yourselves

Oh and he only had $100,000 to make it, he had to get it on his own because LucasFilms said he couldn't rely on crowdfunding, so that's cool I suppose... anyway, here's the link
(I can't figure out how to get the player to show up ^^;)

www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ey68aM…
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:iconstefano96:
Stefano96 Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2019  Hobbyist General Artist
Hi, I was wondering if here, do you accept .GIF animations about Star Wars, since I made a lot of them
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:iconextrin6:
extrin6 Featured By Owner Mar 25, 2019
Hello there
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:iconignise:
Ignise Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2019
Always looking around for people willing to draw Star Wars OCs as commissions, as I am a terrible artist but full of ideas.
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:icondutertex:
dutertex Featured By Owner Feb 9, 2019  Professional Digital Artist
Hey thank you so much for requesting one of my works to be submitted to this group! If any of you might be interested maybe look at my gallery for more examples of what I create and consider supporting me with a commission or two! I am a dummy! 
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:iconveryclassydemon:
VeryClassyDemon Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Do you guys talk about Star Wars fan films? Because I was wondering if the Vader fan film by Star Wars Theory was a thing in this group
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