The final Shadow of the Sith clip is coming

June 28, 2022 will see the arrival of Shadow of the Sith from author Adam Christopher, and io9 brings us the latest excerpt from the book as we encounter a mysterious sithly figure, someone io9 tells us we already have meet.

THE SEPULCHER, COORDINATES UNKNOWN

NOW

Something moves in the dark, a long cast shadow, crawling through the abyssal night. The shadow is a thing apart: neither alive nor dead.

It’s a relic. It’s a . . . echo. A presence from an older time, a malignity that somehow survived, somehow found a way.

Found a way.

She can see it now. Black and darker still, moving, always moving. Intelligence, yes. A spirit, but without form or substance.

But here — present — all the same.

She closes her eyes. It makes no difference. There is nothing to see but an abyss, a nothing, where the shadow dwells.

Where the shadow thrives.

In the darkness, in the eternal night in his head.

And the void is not silent. It’s anything but. It’s a cacophony, a sound so loud it lights up every nerve fiber with her whole being, even though she knows there’s nothing to hear, physically.

It is the sound of pain. The sound of death. The sound of a thousand thousand souls crying out in grief and agony before they are snuffed out in an instant. Brothers and sisters. Sons and daughters. Mothers and fathers. Podlings, branchlings, kithkins. Sporechildren and denmothers; the space fathers and their brothers, and their gene clusters and shoots. Spawning and offspring. Children.

Entire generations of the living, consumed, their dying cries absorbed and left to ponder forever, trapped inside a dark vessel crafted centuries ago by an uncommon, inhuman power.

By a darkness.

By a shadow, projected for a long time.

And there is another sound. A voice, from the ancient past. It is far away, a call echoing through a vast valley of space and time.

The voice is terrible.

The voice is as familiar as his.

SOON.
She opens her golden eyes. The room is bright and fortunately quiet. Her ears ring like a bell, the sudden absence of cries almost as painful, the echo of the voice still echoing in her mind.

Slowly, slowly, she remembers where she is. As she lies on the ground and makes the world appear around her, she raises a hand and touches her face. It’s hot and humid, the blood on his fingertips is the bright blue of the Pantoran sky.

The place is lit by a flickering flame, and the flickering flame ignites the base of meteoric iron, and next to the base is the mask made of the same stellar cloth. The mask faces him. It tilts, gently, as if it had just been launched.

She fixes the background, the curve of nothingness, of darkness, of deep shadow.

And she hears the voice again.

SOON.
SOON.
She closes her eyes, and she sleeps, exchanging one nightmare for another, in the heart of the night, in the heart of space. She wakes up with another sound, technological, modern. She lifts herself from her nest, ignoring the throbbing in her head, the pain in her limbs.

Because she can’t keep them waiting. They are patient, yes. Maddeningly.

But they’re also quick to anger, and if there’s one thing she doesn’t dare do, it’s anger them.

She agreed to help them. They agreed to show him the way.

It was like that.

And she wouldn’t do anything to jeopardize that.

Standing, she activates the communicator, and her nest lights up in the sudden electric blue of a hologram. The image flickers and vibrates, tinged with the same static and interference that shields the caller’s point of origin.

She kneels before the figure, shrouded in darkness, the hood barely concealing a face tightly wrapped in heavy black bandages, the way all Sith Eternal cultists hide their features.

She doesn’t know why. She does not care.

But she obeys.

“What are your bids, my Master,” she intones, repeating the litany that has echoed through time like the cries inside the mask she knew she would have to put on, soon.

The looming figure speaks, and she listens, and she wonders if this will be the last time or if they will ever honor their promise.

Maybe one day they will ask too much.

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