My late, not really great and thoroughly unlamented Master had a throne. It was a big, rocky and spiked thing. Impractically huge, to be honest. I suppose it helped puff up her ego if she was able tower over everyone. For the same reason, she was fond of projecting an enormous hologram of herself when contacting her minions. I make do with a simple chair. It is sturdy, well-built and easily transported without needing a crew of workers. "My Lord," Nur Jahan says, standing to perfect attention. Few Mon Calamari, to my knowledge, become Sith. It is certainly not the typical image. But we like to subvert expectations.

I face her. Standing or sitting with my back turned to her might look more dramatic, but it would be silly. "Apprentice, you have what I sought?" It is not phrased like a question. Not that I would choke her in a fit of pique if she did not. Not without a very good reason at any rate.
"Yes, Master."
"You never cease to meet my expectations, Nur."
"I aim to excel, my Lord." She inclined her head slightly, but does not bow. My Master liked it when her servitors went down on bended knee before her. She confused the reality of power with its trappings.
I arise and hold out my hand. "Were there difficulties?"
"There was rot. I exploited it." She is not much of a conversationalist. That is fine. I talk enough for the both of us. But she has endured great hardship. It is such dire circumstances that forge strong beings. Many cannot pass through the crucible, but rare individuals emerge stronger. She places the data stick into the palm of my right hand. Once it was flesh and bone, now it is Phrik and circuitry. Shedding the flesh has made me stronger in some ways, weakther in others. But I am no longer distracted by concerns of the body. I can focus fully on the mission.

Accessing the device, I browse the data. "Kerrigan's security arrangements and itinerary for her trip to Dahomey," Nur Jahan says.
"Inspection, pleasure cruise and good-will tour all rolled into one," I remark. "She will receive the homage of her vassals, accept their tribute and probably fornicate a good deal." It is not a weakness exclusive to her, of course. The old Jedi were fools, but they had a point when they instituted chastity. Look at the Sith and Jedi of today. Debauching all the time. They waste their energies on carnal pleasures. It depletes their mental faculties. Passion is far more than wanton craving for the pleasures of the flesh. Control over oneself is everything. Without it, we are chained by our appetites.

"She's just another rich human bigwig." The disdain is palpable in Nur's tone.
"She's an interesting figure. She came from the gutter, then rose to the top in a frenzied dash for power. She is incredibly powerful...and like many who come from nothing and then find themselves at the peak, she gourges herself, cloaking herself in silks, pomp and majesty." Millions have flocked to this so-called 'queen of fire', trading their choice for the security she offers them and a chance to bask in her glory. They have raised her on a pedestal and hailed her as the 'Karishzar'. But the moment an icon shows cracks, those who praise it the loudest can turn into the most fervent apostates.
"Why we do care?"
"I do recall you being very eager to get back at the great and good. The leeches of society. Have you lost your appetite, my friend? "
"Never. But we don't have the resources to take on Firemane." The moment the words leave her lips, she regrets them. "Not that I am..."

I brush them aside with a wave. "If I wanted a drone, I would purchase one of Enyo's automatons. You're a Sith, not a simpering creature fearful of opening its mouth, let its tongue be cut out because its owner does not the like words leaping from it."
"Yes, Master."
"I have no grudge against Kerrigan, but I would not mind seeing the pyramid she stands upon being thrown into disarray. Moreover, a former student of mine has considerable interest in her."
Recognition dawns upon her features. "Darth Soteria."
"A powerful figure as well. Whilst Kerrigan basks in luxury and adoration, Soteria has embraced the primal ferocity of the jungle. Of passion and fury, she has learned much. Of control? Far less."

I suppose the error also lay with me. Converts tend to become the greatest fanatics. She was indoctrinated into the Light of the Jedi, so when she embraced the desk, she plunged head-first into it. We Sith fulfil a vital purpose. We serve Nature's purpose by culling the herd, but no greater purpose is served when we wipe it out and burn the forest down.

Leonina Varkathras, Soteria's former Padawan, serves Kerrigan. Soteria always wanted her at her side. Like a mother wants a daughter to follow in her footsteps." Leonina rejected us both when we tried to open her eyes. Her defiance was frustrating...and yet I respect her for it. It was a foolish choice that has continued to tie her people who will not let her develop the full extent of her potential, but a choice.

Nur catches up. "You wish to lure her to Kerrigan."
"It will be a test for both of them when the two forces of nature collide. We cannot approach Soteria directly, but I know a broker she has dealings with. Some doctored footage might not go amiss. If Soteria is led to believe that Leonina is there, she may make a move."
"She will realise she's been set up," Nur points out.
"Of course. Perhaps she will even trace it back to me. But when she finds herself facing the woman who 'denied' her Cathar 'daughter' to her, will she slink away? I think not. Not when Kerrigan has her guard down and is without her legions. Soteria is a predator. She craves to test herself against the greatest game in order to prove her superiority. She can send a message, and lure her ex-apprentice to her. And Kerrigan thinks herself a battle goddess."There are no god-queens or, for that matter, god-kings in this universe. Just the eternal struggle. If Kerrigan dies, Firemane will be after Soteria. If Soteria perishes, I get rid of a thorn in my side and Kerrigan will not emerge unscathed, mentally or physically, after being ambushed in her domain.

"Everything is proceeding as I have foreseen."
"It is, Master?"
I shrug my heavy, metal shoulder. The servos hum. "I'm putting two dragons in a room to see who comes out on top and then I will exploit it down the line. But should things proceed in a manner I want, I will naturally have a monologue prepared about how everything was part of my grand plan. It will be a good monologue. The best."