This week we have another Lore article submission by the very talented Allenion. Enjoy!
Not since Naga Sadow led the ancient Sith of Korriban into the Great Hyperspace War have the Sith known a warrior with more vision, ability to inspire and devotion to the Dark Side than Darth Malgus.
His passion for domination in the endless clash between the Jedi and Sith propelled him from an accomplished acolyte to a hero of the Great War, and, ultimately, the leader of the greatest rebellion of his time.
For a detailed look into the legend of Malgus the Betrayer, hit the jump.
Trials of a Warrior
Before he was Darth Malgus, his birth name was Veradun. He was an adopted child, though records do not indicate the identity of his real or adopted parents. His trials as a warrior began when he took his first life. He was still a child. The victim was a Twi’lek slave in his adopted father’s household who had committed a small error in her work. He did not take her life for her oversight. He took it to know that he could kill. His adopted father, filled with pride, immediately arranged for his son to study at the Sith Academy on Dromund Kaas.
The boy rose to prominence in the Academy, feared by his peers and revered by his pureblood Sith master, Lord Vindican. When Veradun was old enough to lead troops into battle, he fought with a contagious zeal. Though the soldiers he commanded feared him, they respected him for his innate appreciation of their service, a rare quality among Sith. After receiving word that the Empire was to begin its assault on the Republic, the boy ached to serve on the front lines.
Veradun, by then addressed as Malgus, was 19 when he struck down Lord Vindican above Korriban’s red desert wastes. Malgus had succeeded in defeating the master of future Jedi Grand Master Satele Shan, Battlemaster Kao Cen Darach, where Vindican had proved unworthy. Having surpassed his master, it was only natural that he took his place.
Hero of the Great War
The next 28 years of the Dark Lord’s life were spent fighting the Republic in service of the Empire. To Lord Malgus, the Force was conflict incarnate, and the only way to realize its true purpose was to create more conflict, weeding out the weak forces in favor of the strong. Malgus’ fervor for the Empire was born from its ability to constantly feed this passion.
Though fiercely independent, Malgus recognized the importance of allies. He often employed the help of a Mandalorian bounty hunter about whom he knew very little except that she hated Jedi, excelled at her work and was reliable. He also developed an intimate relationship with a Twi’lek slave, Eleena. Though his relationship with an alien slave was looked upon as grotesque in Imperial culture, Malgus cared little about such criticism.
His nearly flawless campaign was almost shattered when Republic infantry unit 326, better known as Havoc Squad, caught his forces in a surprise attack during the Battle of Alderaan. After sustaining heavy losses, the Imperials were able to subdue the troopers until the unexpected arrival of Satele Shan, Malgus’ nemesis since the outset of the Great War. Along with Commander of Havoc Squad Jace Malcom, Shan bested Malgus, leaving his charred body buried beneath the rubble of a cliff face.
Deception and Disillusionment
Somehow, the Dark Lord’s body was recovered by his allies. With the help of cutting-edge cybernetic enhancements and the care of his Twi’lek slave, Eleena, Malgus slowly regained his health. His breathing was now regulated by a respirator which also served to hide his disfigured chin. Far from weakening him, the Battle of Alderaan only fueled his hate for the Republic, specifically for Satele Shan.
Propelled by his desire for revenge against Shan, he thrust himself to the forefront of the Sacking of Coruscant. Though she was not among those stationed at the Jedi Temple during the invasion, the operation was a success. By the end of the day, the remains of the Jedi Temple and the entire planet of Coruscant belonged to the Empire.
Malgus was unprepared for what came next. The Empire’s original plan had been to end the Jedi and the Republic by crippling them on their capital world. Instead, the Sith negotiators were commanded to offer the Republic the Treaty of Coruscant, ceding multiple systems to the Empire and halting the war, using Coruscant as ransom.
From that day, the Empire ceased to hold meaning for Darth Malgus. He could no longer follow an Emperor who chose to spare his enemy at their greatest moment of weakness. Realizing he too had a weakness in Eleena, the enraged Sith confessed his love to her before murdering her in cold blood on Coruscant’s surface. Malgus the Betrayer was born.
An Empire Reborn
Shortly after the signing of the Treaty of Coruscant, Malgus travelled to the Unknown Regions. While there, he decided to take his hatred for the Empire a step further. It would not be enough to relinquish his ties to the Empire. His need for conflict would not be sated. The only course was to create a new Empire, one which he ruled with the strength to bury the old Empire and finish what the Sacking of Coruscant had started.
However, his Empire would need allies. He spent about a decade learning from and acclimating himself to alien cultures, gaining the respect of many, including the Trandoshan Tregg the Destroyer, bounty hunter Jindo Krey and Anomid scientist Arkis Wode.
Once he had collected enough allies outside of the Empire’s sphere of influence, Malgus carefully searched the Empire’s ranks for Sith, soldiers and statesmen who were similarly enraged by the path their society was taking. His powerbase secured, Malgus waited for the chance to strike.
His moment arrived when an Imperial strike team took control of the Foundry, the Rakatan droid construction facility, and all communication with the Emperor was lost, presumably due to a Jedi strike team. In a swift show of military efficiency, Malgus gathered his followers on the Crystal Fleet, an Imperial stealth armada, and overtook the Emperor’s space station and the Foundry. He deployed an army under the command of the previous ambassador to Voss, Darth Serevin, to take the planet Ilum. Once his forces were in place, Malgus transmitted a message on the Imperial HoloNet inviting “all who long for conquest, freedom from inhibition and the right to follow their passions” to join his new Empire.
Despite his careful preparations, the new Emperor’s reign would be a short one. An Imperial strike team dropped behind enemy lines and dispatched Serevin. The strike team, using Serevin’s stealth vessel, infiltrated Malgus’ stolen space station while the Imperial Fleet bombarded it, then disabled the station’s shields and confronted the False Emperor.
The strike team thrust Malgus off of a bridge in his throne room, ostensibly sending him to his death before the fleet gunned down his space station. After the battle, the Imperial Reclamation Service scoured the ruins of the space station. The False Emperor’s remains were not found among the wreckage and, while the strike team that defeated him watched his fall, they did not witness his death. Either his body was annihilated along with his space station or Malgus the Betrayer lurks in the shadows of the galaxy, rebuilding his strength in exile.