Inside was a skull placed delicately amid folds of fine, dark velvet to protect it during its journey. Clearly human in origin, it had been adorned with all manner of metalwork until it resembled something of a small city. Painstakingly carved between the adornments were thousands, thousands of small Sith runes rusty with what looked like blood. The edges of the symbols sometimes seemed to flash in the light when the skull was rotated. The object itself gave off a powerful Dark Side aura, like to choke anyone who didnâ€™t already command it with precise control. Underneath the skull was a note written in Matsuâ€™s hand.
â€˜Darth Carnifex -
We have sat on the same councils. We have shared a few words. Out feet have touched the same battlefields. It is my great regret that I do not yet know you as ally.
In your hands is the skull of Gaius Zhuta, a pious man who did not accept the Dark when it came to cleanse Maena. I burned him and cleansed him myself, pared the bones clean until the skull was as you see it now. Alchemy set its city to life. It is my blood dried in the runes to fuel the sorcery which makes it the artifact that I gift to you. Even a great lord such as yourself, though not affected by its power, will feel its toxic aura. Carry this in to battle with you and it will destroy your enemyâ€™s minds with fear. Leave it in your throne room to twist those you wish to crush to your bidding. Torture those foolish enough to stand against you by leaving them in its presence. It will waste them away.
I have made it no secret that I bow to no man or woman. But it is my sincere wish that this token - created by my hand and with my power, given new life from my own blood - will serve to show you that even if I stand as my own god, that House Xiangu stands by House Zambrano in war and in silence.