Chapter 4 – Droid Apprentice
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2 years later...

It was the middle of the night. The Sith Lord, Darth Kobold awoke to voices.  Kobold could hear Renin in the work shop talking with someone.
Kobold walked into the workshop to find Renin alone.

He asked, "With whom were you conversing?"
Renin laughed and looked down at the Astromech droid by his side.

"Say hello R2." Renin instructed the droid.

The Droid spun around and chirped and whistled for a few seconds. It finally ended with a low pinched beep and a buzzer like sound. It didn't sound like he was fond of Master Kobold.

Renin continued “R2 wanted to see his first master so he came to the work shop to see me. He’s always locked up on that ship. You were gone for almost a complete cycle my master.”

Kobold looked perplexed so he asked “This droid acts as if he has emotions. He’s been by my side on ever mission. Not once did he exhibit such behavior. He’s been battle tested. This droid has killed in the name of the Sith.”

Renin replied “You don’t think a droid can have a soul master?”

Kobold dismissed the notion and looked around the shop. He quickly changed the subject and asked Renin, "Are you almost done with your lightsaber?"

Renin was a genius with electronic hardware. Kobold knew this and was very curious to see what flair he might have added to the basic lightsaber design.

Renin handed Kobold a lightsaber hilt made of what looked like granite. Kobold held it up. It felt like smooth cold steel but the weight gave it away. Lightsabers were generally built out of lighter materials for obvious reasons.

"Why would you construct a lightsaber like this? It’s heavy and unbalanced. I thought I taught you well Renin. This is not the work of a genius but that of a bewildered Nerf herder." Kobold laughed.

Renin sat calmly and just asked, "Turn the blade on and then tell me what you think."
Kobold held up the lightsaber and triggered the light beam and yellowish blade of light extended out. Kobold was slightly impressed but it still was just a yellow lightsaber and he had seen these before.

"Interesting choice Renin. But why?"

Renin explained, "If you look carefully at the light you will see a slight variation of color as it shifts from yellow to an even lighter yellow."

Kobold looked closer to exam the light variation.

"Is it fluctuating to white every few seconds?"

"Yes." said Renin.

"Is it stable?"

"Yes. That is why the handle is rock instead of metal. It absorbs the power output not allowing it to vibrate too much keeping the crystal perfectly at rest. It fluctuates between colors every few seconds but over time it will be a pure white lightsaber."

Renin smiled after he saw Kobold was amazed with his explanation.

"You have out done yourself boy. We need to put this blade to the test."

Kobold looked at Renin and stared into his eyes, "It is time for you to begin your journey to becoming a Darth. You must kill."

The Astromech droid spun around swiftly and chirped loudly followed by several bleeps which almost sounded like it was communicating.

"Is something wrong with the droid?"

"No, not at all. I think he goes through power cycles that fry his circuits just a little bit. But Master, did you say you intend for me to kill?"

"This is the way of the Sith. I have spoken of this before. You can not be afraid of death. You can not be afraid to kill. Such is the order of the universe and we will not stop the growth of the ever expanding darkness. We allow the universe to flourish and grow with no restraint. Killing is the natural order. Some live and some die. Those that live, move on to making the universe stronger as a whole. You must kill boy. And you will kill today."

Kobold walked out of the shop. Renin was overwhelmed with anger and wounded with sadness. He was a good apprentice. Renin could generate force lightning even as an apprentice.
He was growing to love the force. He was conceiving ideas of marrying Sith Magic with electrical circuits. Droids, ships, and even weapons could all have a soul. Renin knew this was all possible seeing how it was already working in R2.


The Sith practiced unlimited power and Renin had mastered this very well. But now his Master wanted him to kill and that was something Renin had hoped would never be asked of him.

The Astromech droid Renin-2 moved closer to Renin. The droid whistled softly and let out what sounded like a sigh.

Renin put his hand on the droids head and said "R2 I can't kill. This isn't what I agreed to. I know if I try to leave he'll kill me and dismantle you for scraps. If he only knew the intelligence created in you.  It was the Sith holocron which he infused with your main processor that unlocked the secret. Just to keep your algorithms from fading I had to learn to unlock the magic in a Sith holocron so I could store the energy and keep it cycled. I know Kobold is barely aware of your intelligence. Now we have to become space scum or be killed."

R2 rolled over to the display station. His access port flipped out and plugged in. The display appeared showing the ship yard. The Dawn's Chariot was at a recycle dock next in line for dismantling.

"He did it anyway. He's going to disembowel that ship just to see how it works. I'm sure he has the same planned for you R2."
The droid chirped and rumbled with intense vibration. Next a series of multiple random beeps and tones came from R2. The same series of beeps were repeated. Renin didn't notice or pay it any mind at first. He then realized R2 was communicating in an old pilot binary code. Renin knew this from his brother.

He put his hand on R2 and asked, "Repeat that again would ya buddy."

R2 beeped a few times and then let out an assortment of beeps and whistles and this time Renin paid close attention. Are you saying we should get to the ship and hijack it out of here? How do we get passed the guards and how do we keep Master of our trial? R2 bounced back and forth and finally let out a loud beep. You are one brave droid R2. We either do it or die, right?"

Renin walked quickly through the ship yards with his cloak pulled over his head. Two guards saw him walking towards one of the ships. They came from either side and converged on Renin’s position.

As they got close Renin started to run. The two guards were not Sith Lords but they had lightsabers and were obviously quit skilled.

One threw his lightsaber and as it reached Renin he leaped and let the saber pass under his feet. The other guard had some knowledge of the force. He accelerated into a force run and in two seconds was tackling Renin to the ground. As they landed Renin's head fell off and his right arm popped out of its socket.

They rolled together for a few seconds. The guard held Renin tight. The other guard had his head turned trying to see if he really saw the intruders head fall off. Renin and the guard came to a stop.

The guard leaped to his feet and tore off the cloak. The headless body was twitching on the ground' sparks were shooting from the neck as if it was a fireworks show. The guards had successfully captured Renin's combat double droid he used for practice.

The guards looked across the field and saw Renin and his droid approaching the Dawn's Chariot. Renin used the force to lower the ramp. Standing at the top was Kobold. His hood on his cloak was lowered and you could see the glowing yellow eyes peering through the darkness.

"I knew you would try to leave. I knew you would come for this ship. Now you will pay for your transgressions my young apprentice. Pity you do not have your lightsaber to defend yourself.”

Kobold’s red glowing light saber blade extended from his arm showing he was armed and ready.

“A Jedi would wait for you to get your saber. I am not a Jedi, boy and tonight you will die," Kobold exclaimed.

Kobold took one step back raising his saber and within the heartbeat of a second he was charging Renin. Renin ducked and rolled up the ramp and into the cargo bay. When Kobold turned around he saw the droid rolling into the ship. He force jumped up the rank springing into the cargo bay. Renin was waiting and shoulder tackled Kobold. They both landed on a long work bench. R2 rolled closer to them.

Kobold raised his lightsaber again so that he could strike Renin down with one blow. Renin screamed for R2 as the droid glided into position and with his top hatch opening. Renin's lightsaber ejected from the dome of the droid and right into his hands.  He blocked Kobold's strike and pushed him away. R2 rolled towards Kobold.

"When will you learn my little friend?" Kobold said.

R2 chirped and whistled and then let out a high pitched scream and seemed to awaken all of the ship. Kobold pushed towards R2 and then realized he couldn't move. He was being pushed himself. He looked at Renin and Renin was sitting on the deck with his mouth wide open in shock. Kobold knew it was R2 with a strong force hold on him. Kobold was hard pressed to the hull of the ship. A compartment opened in the wall and Kobold was pushed by the force inside before he could resist. The compartment closed and Kobold was ejected far from the ship. As Kobold hit the ground the ship jettisoned into orbit and not soon after they were in hyper space.

Renin plotted a course for Coruscant. He had heard the Jedi temple was located there and it was also a base of operations. Now he had to figure what had just happened.

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