Darth Sidious viewed the mighty Hexagonal gate with suspiscion and mistrust. It had been so many years since his last departure from Coruscant. Almost three decades of iron rule upon the Obsidian throne of the Core, three decades of political domination in a theatre crowded with actors, each one scrambling for the lead role.
But this journey was a necessity, relations with the Imperium had grown lax lately with the alliance which had endured through so much now fallen into little more than words. It had been so long since the Empires and Imperiums warfleets had honoured each other in glorious battle, too long since the alliances political hand had stretched far and wide. Today, Darth Sidious endeavoured to change this.
With Wilhuff Tarkin overseeing the Empires political stabilisation, and Darth Vader maintaining the iron grip over the military, the time was ripe for his first journey to the seat of chaos.
The force had surely wrought this alliance out of will and strength, for both thrones, the Imperium and Empire stood at polar ends of fate. One, chaotic revelled in madness and insanity while the other was methodical, meticulous and ever hardened in foreign policy. Only the will of two Emperors saw to the strength of their bond. only the desire of the two thrones insured the survival of the greatest alliance ever known.
The gate sparked with life, its blood red portal forming in a swirl of fear. Darth Sidious felt great pain from the world thereafter, the force cried out in agony as countless lifeforms pleaded for mercy, thousands, millions enduring an eternity of sorrow. So much. The twisted eyes glimmered. So much pain. Darth Sidious: Emperor Palpatine revelled in the warp.
His Imperial Star Destroyer, closely followed and headed by its escort passed through the horizon without hindrance, the officers of the fleet at unease of this technological monstrosity. It was possible to travel between Galaxies through Hyperspace, yet, the times involved would demand weeks away from Coruscant, too long when ambitious admirals and moffs were maintaining control. The Imperium had managed to devise these gates, capable of not only accessing the warp, but folding it as well, rendering the journey almost instantaneous....
On the other side, the forge system of the Imperium lay in wait.....
A single ship stood before the awesome, near infernal, fury of the immense Warpgate; sitting like a mote in the vast eye of a storm of fire. Remiel smiled softly, gazing out from upon the bridge, regarding the immense construct that had long served as a gateway between the Milky Way and the galaxy which the Sith sought utter dominion over. Remiel had long known that his father relied upon this gate to defy the ineffective hyperdrives of the Sith, which prevented them from instigating flawless intergalactic travel. It had been an immense construct forged of the Mechanicus and sorcerous art. A symbol of fraternity and unity.
And now it was open, a yawning maelstrom that harkened the coming of a new, black era. A Golden Age without mercy or relent.
Emperor; can you hear me?
Remiel's voice boomed across ship systems and out into the limitless void, transfigured through the immense array and hurtled countless millions of lightyears to a far distant galaxy.
He awaited his reply, even as the first pristine Imperial vessels crossed over the crackling edge of the event horizon and back into real space. The journey would have been rendered near instant through the wards and spellcraft that had went into it, and the raw force of the astropathic energies guiding it.
Emperor Palpatine, belated brother and honored ally; it has been too long since our last meeting. I welcome you, my friend, to Hydran Prime, the new Mars, chief among Forge Worlds, the seat of my power in my capacity as the voice of the Gods, Chaos and Machine, and my role as the true and undenied Omnissiah
"Emperor; can you hear me?" The voice filtered through the audio systems; the bass tone echoing into the pillared throne room. Darth Sidious swivelled upon his dias; eyes captivated by a window to the stars. Before him the ominous shadow of an Imperium rested in wait, the many guns of a battle barge opened and raised, heralding rejoice and respect at the beckon of their master.
Flanked by the mighty construct of the mechanicum, and preceded by the manifest Lord of Chaos, Darth Sidious: Emperor Palpatine at that moment knew that this alliance would continue to endure for a millennium "You are heard; friend." The croaked voice of Sidious replied; its distorted tone a reminder of the price that must be paid, for power. Cloaked, guarded and hidden by the enveloping hood, Sidious was private of his disfigurement. This forced veil was by no means vain, instead he saw it as weakness, a pointed reminder of just how close he had come to defeat.
"Emperor Remiel; friend and ally, my feelings too fall upon regret at the infrequency of our meetings. But let us not dwell upon the shortcomings of the past, let us instead cast our eyes towards the future."
Remiel let a satisfied grin slide forth in an almost feral rictus of black glee. He rose, his voice booming forth now in an authoritive, yet teasingly jovial tone. He was enjoying this, playing diplomat to an Emperor, ushering in a new era, a new age of disaster and a deluge of rabid insanity across all the known cosmos. Remiel would outshine his father, he would outshine all the torpid glories of Chaos and replace them with a new shining example to all who walked the dark paths.
He would become a living vessel of unknowable carnage.
I grant you permission to enter my domain, and to come forth, to join me upon my vessel. A feast has been prepared in your honor, and in honor of our meeting, a meeting that I am sure shall prove fruitful for our empires. Following the meal and the diplomacy, if you so wish, I shall be happy to escort you planetside, where the military might of the Imperium shall be displayed for your amusement.
Come forth, friend. There is much that we must discuss. The future, it waits, it beckons.
tag; also, both of you check your tgs. (Apologies for interrupting )
Occupying the crown of the Diadem Palpatine grasped his crooked staff. Age, disfigurement, and endless battles with death had taken their toll upon the Dark Lord of the Sith, his physical being now falling into shadow.
Flanked by his honour guard of red robed guardians Palpatine was led from the height of a warship into its bowels. Arrayed in precision formations, ranks of stormtroopers and marines held the emperor as a God, their eyes watching his immortal self, praising his very being. Rumours were abound through the service, that the emperor had cheated death for the second time; wonder and fear had sparked upon almost every world under the domination of this timeless Sith. Each breath baited with wonder; "Could Palpatine be killed?"
Rising into his personal shuttle Sidious took his seat while behind him captain Pelat overseen the final embarkation procedures. Wings extending and thrusters firing, the emperor nestled inside his shuttle left the Diadem.
Remiel waited in the hanger bay, flanked by rows of armored Space Marines. Each one was a timeless warrior of the Imperium, pure unadulterated stock, further enhanced to the pinnacle of combat glory. Remiel moved forth as the shuttle drited across the void; ready to welcome this foreign soverign onto what technically counted as Chronosian soil. He let himself chuckle lightly, tickled pink by the prospect of what was to come.
"So, here we have it" He whispered to himself. "The Empire returns to the Imperium's side once more, and we walk with our allies even through the shadow of death itself. How pleasing...How the Gods must grace this occasion with their power and their presence. The Warp wishes this, this union, this alliance...And so, it shall be done...We shall return"
The small judder of the landing rocked Palpatine as he rose to his feet. Cane in hand, hood raised the Dark Lord of the Sith proceeded to exit his shuttle. Led through the exhaling jets of coolant by his honour guard, Darth Sidious creeped towards his host....
The force exhumed presence, its aura, waves and currents flowing through the vast docking bay like a tide of destiny. Power, glory, victory was foreseen in this moment. A golden era traversed and enforced by the machines of empires vast and bountiful; guarded by lords now timeless and immortal. This was his destiny, this was the will of the force. "Emperor." Palpatine said softly. Face Hidden and masked by the overhanging of his hood. The sharp clinging of his staff shattering the following silence with steady and repeating thuds.
Remiel bowed his head respectfully, feeling the power of this ancient being, so frail and yet so mighty in his own respect. A mind, sharp as daggers, a power as lethal as any weapon living. His deformed features, which Remiel almost regarded as a mark of honor, a form of depraved pride in sensation, were hidden. Remiel smiled almost beatifically, watching as he moved forward.
"It is a pleasure, old friend, to see you within the boundaries of my Empire. Much has changed since you last walked this world. I am Emperor now, my fathers life snuffed out by my own hand that Chaos might rule more truly." He chuckles softly, runes pulsing with dark power upon his regal, perverse, armor. "But much has come of my progress and my leadership. We held the Empire together during the dark times, during the infighting and the invasions." He sighed softly.
"I only hope that now, together, we can reforge it, for the unity of the galaxies that fall under our baleful sight. There will, of course, be the need for others of similar ability, who we can come to rely upon."
Palpatines head offered a small nod in return. "Your father rained well; yet in the end it was not good enough. Betrayal it seems, is not only the art of the Sith, it is the instinct of an heir." The words were pointed each one acting as a barbed knife. "Yes; yes." An insidious smile crept along the thin cracked lips of Palpatine. "The dark times were filled with trials, yet, we now find ourselves stronger, greater than before. Our Galaxies twinned in war are ripe for dominion." The thought trailed gently.
Inhaling briefly Palpatine cast his thoughts back to death, to a time where he was helpless to stem the flow of ill conceived hordes upon his realm, to a time where it seemed liberty would cast its glow upon the secure bastion of Coruscant. "You speak the truth when you say the Imperium harboured the Empire in its time of need, your words cannot be faltered, and you hold my gratitude. Yet the chaos has wrought renewed strength in our cause. The people of my realm now see the need for the Empire, their eyes are focused upon the repercussions of chaos and disorder. Their hearts rest upon the destruction caused by civil wars and claims by weak pretenders." Palpatine trailed off for a moment carefully deliberating on his next words.
With a relishing smirk the discoloured smile of Sidious flickered. "I am aware of a race that we could come to trust......."
"And who would these individuals be?" Remiel leans forward, youthful, perfect features tight and intrigued, his grin slipping into a tensed, almost mocking smirk. "I would imagine that there are many yet who will rise to our side and stand with us, glorious harbingers of a new age, an age of madness, of chaos, of perfect unity and undeniable might. We are the chosen, we are they who face the grim reality that others would ignore. That unity is needed. That leadership is needed."
He gestures to the heartland of his Empire, the mighty forges of Hydran that rage eternally, the immense fortress worlds. "Would the Masaki's offer up such strength? Could any of our manifold enemies; past, present or future; stand against the tide of unfathomable power that we epitomise? Can any stand against the followers of the true Way? You too must open up a place for Chaos within yourself and your Empire, friend...Only then can you see with the sight undiluted!"
"We have endured chaos." Palpatine spluttered. "It died with the Republic." Sidious recalled the endless bickering in the rotunda, the timeless debates which would span years of dialogue, each word harbouring deceit and selfish desire, which in the end damned a galaxy. Yes, true chaos was too disorganised to control even themselves. "The true way?" Palpatine offered. "lies within me, and you. There is, at the beginning and the end, only the force. You speak of unfathomable power, it surrounds you Remiel, it flows through you. The force controls our destiny, and we are subject to its dominion."
"Empires rise and fall, civilisations crumble against the dunes of time, yet the force lingers, crafting its manifest design. This, here and now is apart of that, though the place of the Thrashians still eludes me." The two emperors left the grand hall that was the flight deck, proceeding deeper into the bowels of the ship. "They are traitors, liars and naysayers, yet with their anger, hate and desires brings strength. The force is with them Remiel; as it is with us."
"The force is simply another way to power, a deceitful treacherous power wielded by the few. Did not my brother turn against all he knew? Mix blood with that Masaki bitch and abscond to your side? Mock not the raw power of the Warp, the power which guides and fuels me, simply because the experiment returned to but one of its degenerate fathers. Do not seek to lessen the might of the Imperium"
He seemed to scowl, almost snarling, before conducting himself into a more gracious facade. "Yet you speak of the Thrashians...What could you possibly intend for those who once stood as traitors? Those who facilitated the very need for us to reign in your bastard heirs and unfitting would-be Emperors?"
"The Thrashians..... Are forgiven of their betrayal." The cloaked face betrayed no emotion. "They are a people driven by power, greed, and ambition. They have fear and they wield it to obtain glory. They are, unwittingly, servants of the force." Sidious was silent for a moment. "They have much potential my friend, they lack only the means to grasp it."
"And you, I assume, shall be the one to nudge them into seizing it, eh?" Remiel chuckles, the brevity of his laughter fading into the contemplation of what will come, what has already passed. "There is, of course, the matter of continued Rebellion. We regard the failure to enforce Compliance upon ones own realm as...A grave obstacle to any future triumph of our combined forces.
Already one of your own-" He smiled, assuring that there was as yet no reason for the Imperium to seem as one with the Empire or its goals "-Struggles against the onslaught of the Coredian invaders and their allies. We have seen this, content merely to watch the fireworks, but eventually it will fall to someone to deal with them"
Remiel let his hand idle upon the hilt of Lifesbane. "There must be a final solution to the problem that is the Masaki lineage"
"It is only natural that the Masakis should attract the desire of idealists...... Their lineage." Palpatines thoughts trailed to his throne room. Father, Mother, Sister, Grandfather, Uncle, each a prince of Coredia, each a hero to the rebellion, all now mounted above the Obsidian throne. "Is failing, there are but a handful left, their final destiny is.....fast approaching."
"And it shall be Chaos who decides their final destiny, the last gasps of a dieing order. Of course, this does not end the threat of their lineage. The spoor of the fool Masaki must not be allowed to maintain his fathers position or his rebellion. He will be a considerable thorn in our side in the days to come." Remiel smiles.
"Now, shall we see about a tour of the ship? Perhaps to the feast? And then, we can show you the industrial heartland of the Imperium itself, eh?"
Palpatines curiosity wandered from food to warship from platter to parade in the hopes of understanding more about this Imperium. The Chronosians had been allies yes, friends and strong counsel certainly, yet; the two cultures had never truly understood each other.
"I leave the decision." Palpatines sly voice croaked. "To you."
Remiel smiles. "Then follow me. You must feel hunger, having endured a voyage between Galaxies." He leads Palpatine down the dark corridors, past twisted servitors and walls that seem inlaid with faces. Eventually they arrive, the banquetign hall an immense room, tables laiden with food fill the room, gold and silver gleams, glass and crystal cast a sparkling, bale light over the proceedings.
"Sit, friend." He gestures as he seats himself at the head of the table, "Take your fill. Food. Wine. Whatever you wish."
Remiel was like his father; great, proud and subtle. This show, this extension of courtesy was more than a meal, it was a statement a show of courtesy for the empire. It said, we are strong. Sidious watched as Remiel feasted, grasping goblet in hand as his host took his fill.
Were they truly that different, the Sith and the Imperium? Truly, the Empire yes, the extension of order to achieve power, yet at the core, the centre of this order, was a pool of chaos, there was the Sith, the breeding ground for dissent and corruption within the force. Yet, Palpatine found himself uneasy, were these his allies of old?
He rolled several tomatoes onto his platter.
They were certainly as strong, if not stronger under this new leader.
He pulled a piece of meat from a steaming carcass.
Remiel De Drakan, what are your desires?
Remiel chuckled softly, watching Palpatine. He could sense his unease, his wonderings. So confused, his power reaching towards its apex, yet floundering. How long had the Empire fought against an enemy that knew no bounds? A rebellious foe who would not stop till freedom was attained? How long? Remiel let the red liquid coarse over his lips, tasting the rich infused vintage with the glee of a seasoned sensualist, fingers, pliant and perfectly formed, closed around a slice of meat raising it to his lips, chewing with flawless teeth. He smiled with that glinted mouth, and leant forward.
"I trust then that you have questions? Many many questions of what came to pass as you languished beyond life and death? I shall deliver to you, answers, my friend. I shall enlighten you."
Watching the Chronosian vessel with obvious unease captain Pallat waited for the impending data stream. The Imperial expeditionary force set out from Coruscant some months ago were due to transmit their data at any moment. Though the stream would undoubtly be detected by the Imperiums Mechanicum, the coded information present would, if all went well remain an Imperial secret.
"Data Streem Recieved" A voice bellowed from commscan. "Captain, they're alive."
Sidious glanced over the banquet lightly, his mind too focused on politics to give the food the attention it deserved. "Enlighten?" Palpatine drew out the word, yes, perhaps the term was suitable? But for whom? In a sly smooth motion, Sidious turned his disfigured head towards the dwarfing emperor, eye level, and head set, the protocol of an monarch forbade him to look up. "My friend, our civilisations have achieved much together. The rise and fall of the Coredians, the destruction of countless civilisations, and the forging of an alliance that can never be broken. Yet, I find myself wondering, if our bonds of fellowship were not broken with your fathers throne? I find myself concerned, if the Imperium that I knew has died with your fathers last breath. I find myself curious to know just what Remiel De Draken desires?"
"An era died with Marcus De Drakan. An era of foolishness and weakness. You knew him, my friend, when he was both a mortal idealist and when he was taken by Chaos, made a Daemon. You saw the change, and you saw his ideals flounder over time. He grew decadant, weak. When I died, the Gods would not let me slip away, they would not let a favored servant go gentle into that dark night that is death. No, they had greater plans for me. I was to be their instrument, their Scion, their redeemer."
He paused to savor another sip of wine, placing the goblet down with a grace uncommon to his mighty form.
"You fear me. Don't you?" He smiles "You fear that my rule is too different from that of my Father, that I, the Emperor, beloved by all, would betray you to your enemies. And usurp your glory as your own, don't you?" He chuckled softly. "You fear I will bring some terrible change upon you."
"Fear." Palpatine rolled. "Lends the Sith strength, it is the source of our power, it is the beginning, and ultimately the end. I do not fear you Remiel De Drakan, but merely the source of your strength, the corruption and taint that chaos festers. Fear, my friend. Must not be mistaken for an enemy of the Sith; no, it is our ally."
The force tingled within the fabric of Sidious, its dark tendrils enthralling him with strength, power, and premonition.
"You may mistake my quest for power as a hunt for honour and glory. Yet we are above such things. The Empire only demands it's right to rule, protect, and extend our hand across the cosmos...."
"Change?" Palpatine almost laughed. "You know what they say about old men and their ways my friend?"
"Change is constant and nessecary. You may wish to coddle those you envisage yourself as protecting, but ultimately, you will lose control. All things will change, evolve. Only by yielding to the forces which propogate change, can one understand change." He smiles.
"Fear is only an ally when it works for you, when you inspire and control it. When you are subject to fear you are subject to weakness, to frailty. Only by conquering fear, can we conquer ourselves and dedicate our intents to a higher, grander purpose. Chaos."
Remiel young and boastful was so sure of himself, proud and filled with rhetoric, yet so young and frail. Here was a man who didn't understand the finer points of the Sith. This emperor was too consumed by chaos to realise just how truly the Sith were consumed by fear, hatred and the quest for power.
"Let us friend not debate on the finer points of ideology, lest we be at this for years to come. Instead, let me cut to the chase of our rhetoric. Where does the alliance between the Empire and the Imperium stand?" Often, the emperor would weave endless webs of misdirection and smoke, yet here and now, at this moment, the Imperium needed to see strength, power, and resolve.
"As it always has stood. Strong and firm, with bonds of blood and power. You have been absent too long, too long has your realm suffered and failed. Not even we felt the need to save it from its slow decline. But now you have returned, once more amongst the living. And the time is now for our re-emergence."
Remiel chuckled wryly, rife with cynicism as he regarded the situation. So much remained to be accomplished, so much remained to be finalised. This was but the beginning.
"A toast" He raised his glass, "To our continued alliance...To strength and to dominance. For Empire and Imperium."
Palpatine lifted his goblet not expecting the raw strength of Remiels arm. "To Empire and Imperium he echoed."
He smiled again, before quickly downing the contents. "Now that we've got that sorted, perhaps you would like to see the world below? Hydran Prime, chief amongst the Imperium's forgeworlds. Here, is the heart of Imperial Industry, where my Dark Mechanicus toil to bring forth yet more ingenius inventions of war and destruction"
He rose from his seat, adjusting his armor slightly, before bowing softly. "I find it pleasing that you have come all this way to safeguard the relationship between our two great nations, that you have placed so much upon our bond. I swear to you, it shall never be broken"
"Then, there is just one other thing." Palpatine offered. "We are in need of your help. The rebellion is once again being throttled, yet we my forces find ourselves unable to choke the last strength from them. Perhaps, the Imperium can assist us in this matter?"
"We would be honored. Simply ask and you shall recieve, my friend. What would you have the Imperium do? How best can we aid our old allies in once and for all plucking the wretched thorn from your side?"
"How might we seal our agreement in the blood of our foes?"
"My attentions are divided friend. The Empire is undergoing vast political changes and I am needed to insure the people are reassured. I cannot see to this, and at the same time, maintain a concerted effort upon a war. I am proposing you are designated warmaster for a time, to insure victory abroad while I enforce consolidation at home."
"Then I accept, Lord Sidious" He smirks, too long have titles gone unused. Too long have names and other, more foolish, less base titles been uttered. "I shall be your proxy, commanding the armies of the Empire to glory. The armies of the Imperium shall stand with them. We took much from you when we relented our rule of the Empire, we may perhaps return them...And perhaps share some of our own secrets"
A cruel smirk crosses his features.
"For the Empire."