|10-Alliel "The Circle"|
”The Circle” Battleteam
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The Circle is interchangeably both the physical location and societal organization within the Clan Plagueis domain where all new Force-sensitive members are trained in combat. The physical training center is located on and within 10-Alliel, an asteroid located within the asteroid belt found in the Aliso system. The group of trainees led by the Taskmaster, taking direct orders from the Overseer, are the organizational side of the Circle.
Alliel is the fourth largest body in the Aliso asteroid belt and comprises approximately 4% of the mass of the entire circumstellar disc. The oblate spheroid shape of Alliel has a surface area of approximately 800,000 square kilometers.
Alliel was discovered during routine exploration of the Aliso system after Clan Plagueis had colonized the main planet of Aliso. The asteroid was chosen for its proximity to Aliso which allows for relatively quick travel to and from the Pinnacle. It was assigned to be the new Plagueis training ground for new members who could easily be hidden inside the asteroid for both safety and to keep the existence of Aliso hidden until trainees were worthy.
While construction of the Circle was ongoing, a small and very temporary building was placed on the surface of Alliel allowing for training to continue while the main internal structures were being completed. Once construction was completed the surface building was converted into a small starport to ferry trainees into the training ground, while all other permanent structures were carved out of the center of the asteroid.
The Circle is the main training ground for the new members of Clan Plagueis. Hidden within the center of the asteroid, 10-Alliel, the exact location remains a mystery to all except those within the highest ranks of the clan.
The Circle is a well fortified building within the interior of Alliel. The oblate spheroid shape of the asteroid made the construction of The Circle difficult and as such, the building consisted of almost three distinct rings. The three floors (rings) of The Circle are utilized for different reasons. The open nature of the interior of the building allows for people on the second and third floors to watch the training and sparring happening in the training ring on the first floor.
The Training Ring
Located on the first floor of The Circle, the training ring is a circular pit designed for sparring and dueling. The pit has an extensive holographic system, allowing for training simulations to be performed in various geographical locations. Situated along the perimeter of the training ring are several Armory weapons caches as well as sparring droids and dummies for melee practice.
The Shooting Range
Located on the second floor of The Circle, the shooting range consists of several different specialized firing lanes for the Clan's non-force user military training. The lanes are walled off and contained in order to limit accidents and distractions, each with a monitoring camera that can be accessed by the Taskmaster from his datapad. Almost a quarter of the floor is made up of the administrative offices for the Taskmaster as well as visiting members of the Clan's summit. Each office and lane opens up to, and is situated around, a large walkway and viewing area of the training ring.
The Sleeping Quarters
While Clan Plagueis is not known for their gentle training methods, several bunk-style quarters have been arranged around the third floor of The Circle for the use of their members. Additionally, the mess hall can be found on this level, along with a library equipped with Shadow Academy modules and terminals. As with the second floor, the quarter of this level directly above the administrative offices is blocked off for the use of the Taskmaster and any visiting members of the Clan's summit. This level also has the only exit to the asteroid’s space flight hangar, which can only be opened with access codes known exclusively by Summit members.
The Circle is a sub-unit meant to mold the Clan’s Novitiates and Journeymen into strong, capable Plagueians by the time they become Knights, Professionals, and Captains. As such, to say that the training performed in the Circle is intense would be a gross understatement. Journeyman deaths are likely and psychoses from the emotional and mental trauma are practically guaranteed.
The Trial of Imprisonment
Before any real training begins, all incoming Plagueians are subjected to restricted confinement in which they are cuffed without food or water in pit-like cells below the Training Ring. Their initial trial is to escape their imprisonment before succumbing to death by starvation or dehydration, all the while hearing the training of the previously successful Plagueians above. Those who live through this test are released into the Training Circle where they first meet the Taskmaster. At this point, members are required to prove themselves as dedicated and worthy to the Ascendant Clan and must earn the privilege to access the second and third rings where they can get to the food and water they need. The weakest Novitiates die in this first trial.
The Trials of Skill
In addition to loyalty and dedication, the Ascendant Clan needs members to have unmatched prowess in their respective disciplines. As such, members of The Circle are consistently tested on their capabilities in combat, knowledge, and their other skills. They range in nature from basic combat with other battle team members to more intensive tasks such as surprise situations and dangerous scenarios. Aside from making them stronger, these tests are designed to make the members of Clan Plagueis more wary, resourceful, and capable. The specifics of each trial are at the discretion of the Taskmaster and occur throughout the entirety of the training process.
One of the more common tests of member combat skill is the Fighter’s Gauntlet. This trial involves the subject facing up to five other members of the Circle in hand-to-hand combat. When a fighter falls to the ground, he or she must press their hand against one of three raised pressure pads situated in the ring. If the member performing the trial defeats five opponents, he or she will face the Taskmaster or another summit member to fight and complete the trial.
The Trial of Fear
As the Journeymen get closer and closer to Knighthood and its equivalents, they need to face more and more of their stronger emotions. For this trial, the member is taken to an out of system location where the Taskmaster has tailored the trial to prey upon the deepest fears of the student. These locations can be anywhere in the galaxy that fits the needs of the trial. Although it is designed to make him or her overcome and fight through their fears, worst case scenarios often result in death or complete mental disability. More often than not, this test is more lethal and damaging than any of the others.
The Trial of Ascendance
The final task of Journeymen of The Circle, The Trial of Ascendance is direct combat with the Taskmaster and another member of the Clan Plagueis Summit. This fight will test all of the student’s attributes that were cultivated by and for the previous trials. The member will have no choice but to demonstrate complete dedication, skill, control of fear, and all other elements expected of a fully-fledged Plagueian. Despite the fact that Journeymen are generally not allowed to face this trial until they are acceptably prepared for it, the odds of success are still low. Failure can either prove that the Journeyman is not ready to leave The Circle or else result in the loss of limbs or even death.
Although primarily for the training of Novitiates and Journeymen, the Circle facility is available to all members of the Clan, provided they are granted security clearance by the summit. With access to the simulations of the training circle, the Shadow Academy research in the library, and the specialized firing ranges, members of the Houses can maintain top conditioning as needed. In addition to simply using the Circle to continue training, all of the Clan Plagueis trials can be repeated with difficulty tailored to fit the specific member. Although he or she may require outside help for this, the Taskmaster will still preside over these repeat trials. With this inclusion, members of the Ascendant Clan proper are more likely to interact with and incidentally help test and train the members of the Circle.