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- "I will not be hurt again."
- ―Teia Coran
Teia comes from the Rishi system.
Teia is tall for a Human female. Though she has a slender build, her muscles are visibly toned due to her acrobatic training. Her hair, which previously reached to her waist, has been cropped to above her shoulders by her master. Her dark brown eyes can be disconcerting - in lower levels of light, they often appear completely black. She is beginning to carry herself more confidently than when she first began her training.
Recently Teia acquired a diagonal scar stretching from the center of her right clavicle down across her left breast. She will not discuss how she acquired this scar.
Teia's father disappeared when she was about four years old, leaving her only vague memories - not even a surname.
Teia's mother, Dora, followed a twisted, apocalyptic interpretation of planet Rishi's mainstream religion. Dora's strange view of H'kig dogma, combined with her extreme paranoia of the "contagious corruption" of the outside world, led to Dora keeping Teia under virtual house arrest for most of her childhood.
At about age 14, Teia's curiosity about the outside world finally overcame the dogmatic fear of it instilled by her mother. By the light of Rishi's sole moon, Teia stepped out of the hovel she grew up in for the third time in her life - and the first unaccompanied by her unstable mother.
After wandering in a deep tropical valley, Teia found a building with Humans in it, although it was vastly different in structure from the hovel she grew up in. A woman saw Teia through a window of this building, and after a few minutes came outside to approach the girl. Teia fled, frightened - but after two more days, hunger overcame her fear. The woman from the window took Teia in and offered food, asking what her story was.
Teia finally decided to trust this kindly woman, and told her that she had left her mother's hovel out of curiosity of what lay beyond its confines. When the woman discovered Teia's mother was the eccentric hermit, Dora (who, the community thought, lived alone), she felt immediate sympathy for the girl and offered to take her in. Teia initially refused, still phobic of the outside world, but later changed her mind and was adopted into the Coran family.
Life Beyond the Hovel
Neisa, the matriarch of the small Coran family, slowly introduced Teia to her husband and daughter. Neisa was shocked at how little knowledge Teia had - she could not read or write, knew no arithmetic, and did not know how to cook or clean. It seemed all Teia knew were word-perfect twisted interpretations of H'kig teachings.
Neisa took it upon herself to educate Teia. She became a quick student, absorbing knowledge like a sponge. Within two standard years, Teia could read, write, and do math as well as any other Human of her age in the community.
Though Teia learned academic subjects quickly, learning to interact with other people in the community was very difficult. However, Neisa was patient, and with the aid of her teenage daughter, Ninya, helped Teia learn to function in society. About three standard years after appearing in front of the Coran house, Teia was no longer afraid to go to the market alone, though she did still prefer solitude.
As Teia thought about her upbringing, comparing it to her experiences in the Coran household, she began to feel confused about her childhood and, most especially, confused about her mother. Neisa's motherly love and patient teaching led Teia to realize that the outside world was a good place, where one could learn new things and form meaningful relationships. Why had Dora kept these wonderful things from her? Why had she forced her only daughter to live in a small, dirty hovel for her entire life, not even teaching her to read or write?
Over time, Teia's confusion regarding her mother turned to resentment, which turned to anger, which slowly evolved into something darker.
To Neisa's delight, Teia began to spend more time with other members of the community, outside of visits to the market. What Neisa did not know was that Teia was spending these hours with a teen boy she met at that market one day. His loud bragging of his prowess with a quarterstaff caught Teia's attention. She asked if he would teach her, offering anything within her power in return. He agreed, and taught her the basics of staff fighting. As payment, he demanded physical favors that made Teia more uncomfortable with every succeeding lesson. Her feelings confused her, but she wanted to learn to fight, so she continued taking lessons and giving payment, telling no one. In her sleep every night, she saw images of her childhood.
After an afternoon lesson that was shorter than usual, Teia's teacher demanded payment. Teia asked why she had to pay before the lesson was over. Her teacher shouted some cruel-sounding words at Teia that she had never heard before and then tackled her, throwing her to the ground. But Teia had been trained more thoroughly than her teacher realized. Still armed with her staff, she threw him several feet across the clearing. He landed within reach of his own staff, which he took up, lunging forward to attack Teia. After receiving a particularly harsh blow to her rib cage, she began to feel another foreign emotion…an intense burning that filled her with strength and focus. She flowed from one combat stance to another, the staff feeling like a natural extension of her own body, and soon her teacher lay lifeless at her feet.
Still in the throes of this intense burning, radiating from her chest to the tips of her fingers and toes, she looked down at the body of her teacher. Teia began to feel…powerful. A smirk spread across her face. He had hurt her, yes, but she made him hurt worse…and the corpse at her feet guaranteed he would never hurt her again.
An image of Dora appeared in her mind's eye.
Suddenly, it all made perfect sense. Of anyone Teia had ever known, Dora had caused her the most pain. The fact that Teia didn't know how horrible her childhood was until she met Neisa just highlighted the hurt. She hefted her quarterstaff, leaning it on her shoulder, holding it with one hand. Teia hadn't seen her mother in years, but she knew the path to the hovel. A small smile spread across Teia's face as she left her teacher's body and set off for Dora's hovel without a glance behind her.
Teia easily found the hovel where she grew up. She regretted having to leave her staff outside - the ceiling of the hovel was too low for her staff to be of any use. Despite the fact that she had not been trained in hand-to-hand combat, she disposed of Dora quickly and easily.
Taking her staff as she left the hovel, Teia walked home to the Coran household. News of her teacher's death had spread quickly once his body was discovered, and on a hunch, Neisa sent her daughter to check on Dora. From the overgrowth surrounding the yard, Ninya saw Teia leave the hovel, and when she had left, checked the structure. Neisa's hunch was correct: Dora was dead.
Ninya ran back to the Coran household and arrived right behind Teia. Neisa confronted Teia, asking questions about the boy that she had not known was teaching Teia to fight. Teia did not reply. Ninya caught Neisa's eyes, and the expression on her face told Neisa all she needed to know about Dora.
Neisa thought in the beginning that there might have been something dark inside Teia. She hoped she was wrong and was saddened to discover she was right.
Neisa told Teia to gather her things and banished her from the Coran household with tears in her eyes. Teia left that very night, more stricken by her adoptive family disowning her than she was about causing two deaths in one day. She couldn't bring herself to harm the only people who had ever shown her love. She left the lush valley of her community for the first time in her life and never looked back.
Teia wandered the valleys and mountains of Rishi, honing her battle skills against the aviary Rishii on the heights of mountains and generally avoiding Humans in the valleys. Eventually, Teia found a spaceport and stowed away on a smuggler's vessel when she thought she was about 18 years of age.
Teia wandered the galaxy for a time, stowing away on whatever ship was convenient, not aware of how much time was passing, and often not even knowing the name of the system she had landed in. When she was finally discovered, the captain of her current ship was surprised by her lethal prowess with any pole-like object available in the moment. He decided to treat her presence as an opportunity and hired Teia as a guard.
But at the next spaceport, Teia felt a strange attraction to another ship. She stowed away, and was discovered quickly, as if the dark persona knew of her presence before takeoff. Oddly, she did not feel the need to defend herself. When this ship landed, she found herself at the Shadow Academy. Upon enrollment, her true age was determined to be 22 years.
The Dark Brotherhood
Teia proved herself a quick student, and her potential was recognized early. She entered the Obelisk order, finding a home on the Corsair with House Cestus of Clan Tarentum. Newly initiated into the Hieros Lokhos ton Taras, she was apprenticed to Windos.
Upon elevation to Protector, Teia was assigned the position of Flight Leader of the Nightwraiths battleteam, which was soon dispatched to Yridia IV, where Adamu, a powerful enemy of Clan Tarentum, had taken control of the minds of members of an entire village. The Nightwraiths were overwhelmed by sheer numbers of mind-controlled humans when they arrived and were beaten and captured. However, the battleteam managed to escape just in time to save prominent members of the clan from certain death at the hands of Adamu and the villagers he controlled. Soon after the final death of Adamu and the end of the conflict, Teia was promoted to Guardian.
While recuperating, Teia continued her studies of the Force. When her body was fully recovered, in true Obelisk form, she began to study two new hand-to-hand fighting styles: Hapan and Knifist. She has since mastered Hapan, as she had previously mastered Dulon, and is still studying Knifist. She also began learning acrobatic maneuvers, something her slim physique has taken to very well, though she is still strength-training. She is also studying the Banlanth lightsaber form.
The race to recover the banner of House Cestus split not only the House but also the Nightwraiths battleteam down the middle. Teia was one of the first to take sides during the conflict, defying her commander, Tyyravis Nami Dantes, and following her Quaestor, Ji K'awiil. During the conflict Ji named Teia commander of the Nightwraiths, an honor she took very seriously, but it was not to last. While Teia put forth her best efforts to secure the VSD Corsair for Ji and permanently eliminate "Nami and his renegades" (the other Nightwraiths), ultimately they were both on losing sides. Saitou Tarentae ended the conflict and the Summit of Clan Tarentum closed House Cestus permanently.
Ironically, it was Teia's very insubordination that earned her next assignment. Her initiative during the crisis on the Corsair did not go unnoticed by her leaders and she accepted the position of Commander of the House Kaerner battleteam, the Reckoners. However, when she accepted this position she also found herself under the command of the very man she tried to kill, and he was still very angry. As punishment for her actions, Teia was apprenticed to Tyyravis Nami Dantes, and as an act of revenge, he severed Teia's waist-long hair. Teia's hair, plaited in a thick, almost meter-long braid, is now hanging from a nail in her personal quarters in Eden City, next to a mirror.
Teia found herself unable to look at her braid without tearing up, and she became disturbed by this personal weakness. She knew that pursuit of the dark side required strength above all else. Ashamed of her weakness but determined to defeat it, Teia fled Eden City and the Yridia system, wandering the galaxy in search of experiences that would make her strong again. Five standard months after her disappearance, Teia reappeared in Dark Jedi Brotherhood territory.
Teia found herself on Karufr in the Kr'Tal System, headquarters of House Taldryan, after her self-imposed exile. She had misgivings about becoming part of the Dark Brotherhood again, but Taldryan's perseverance as the first House of the Dark Brotherhood and its many victories in battle led Teia to join. She is eager to learn what Taldryan will teacher about battle and strength of self.
When Teia reappeared on Karufr she had a prominent scar stretching diagonally from the center of her right clavicle down across her left breast. She has told no one how she got this scar.
Teia's character history, submitted for her dossier, was recognized for excellence by the Praetor to the Headmaster in a news posting on the main DJB page on October 28, 2009.
Teia was awarded her first Crescent with Sapphire Star for winning the Fist of Cestus competition of October 2009. She received her second Crescent with Sapphire Star a few days later, for first place in the Clan Tarentum fiction competition "Revenge is a dish best served cold." Her winning fiction can be read here.
Teia was awarded the Anteian Cross on December 22, 2009. Her fiction efforts have been lauded by her House Summit. She was awarded a second Anteian Cross on May 27, 2010 for her service in founding and leading the Reckoners.
Because of its unexpected usefulness during the Adamu conflict on Yridia IV, Teia now carries a luma grenade on her person at all times.
When alone and relaxing, Teia is known to sing on occasion.