“It was your master, Darth Aevum, that I gave the directive to rebuild the ancient Sith Empire.”―Darth Invidius to Darth Judicar[src]
Darth Aevum, born Layda Aren, was a Dark Lady of the Sith and Sith Empress who led her Sith followers to take over the Empire in 1,002 ABY. She learned from ancient Sith teachings, particularly those from the times of the Great Hyperspace War and the Jedi Civil War, and used them to influence her followers to domination over the Empire. Her ultimate goal was to defeat the Galactic Alliance and destroy the New Jedi Order, carrying on the legacy of the old Sith.
Aevum ruled the Empire for eight years before she was ultimately killed by her apprentice, Darth Judicar, who became Dark Lord of the Sith and Emperor in her place. One year after her death, a new Dark Lord, Darth Exodeus, carried out what Aevum began and launched a war against the Galactic Alliance and the Jedi.
Becoming a Sith
Layda Aren was born in the Unknown Regions approximately eight hundred years after the end of the Third Jedi Purge and the fall of Darth Krayt's Galactic Empire. In that time, the teachings of the Sith were known only in secretive cults throughout the Unknown Regions, generally from holocrons from the Great Hyperspace War through the Jedi Civil War found throughout the region. Aren learned these teachings and became a warrior dedicated to the legacy of the Sith, and she chose to act upon them and form a new order of Sith Lords that she hoped would rival even the ancient Sith empires.
Aren gathered followers and began to travel to worlds throughout the galaxy that had a strong dark side presence, including such worlds as Lehon, Thule, and Conscio. She gained additional power and followers as she traveled, moving her closer to her goal of establishing a new Sith empire. After traveling throughout the galaxy, she and a small group of followers went to Korriban, where they scavenged the tombs of ancient Dark Lords of the Sith for power and teachings. In the tomb of Darth Invidius, Aren was anointed Dark Lady of the Sith by Invidius himself. Aren took on the name Darth Aevum and swore to Invidius to carry on the legacy of the old Sith empires and destroy the New Jedi Order.
Overthrowing the Empire
In the years that followed, Aevum and her followers, the first of the new Sith Lords, trained additional Sith warriors, particularly ones adept at infiltration in order to secure the political and military power the Sith would need in order to return to prominence. One of the first infiltrations they carried out was the society and government of the Chiss Ascendency. The Sith orchestrated a change in the non-aggression stance that the Chiss had upheld for hundreds of years, crafting a Chiss society more in line with that of Grand Admiral Thrawn nearly a thousand years earlier. Once Aevum and her followers revealed themselves to the Chiss, the Sith displayed their own power and the manipulated Chiss pledged their allegiance to the Sith.
The Sith moved to infiltrate the Empire once the Chiss were secured as an ally. The Empire, which had been allied with the Galactic Alliance since the end of the Third Jedi Purge, governed the northern sectors of the galaxy without the rule of any Force users. Aevum’s followers disseminated the teachings of the Sith and the promise of galactic domination throughout the Imperial ranks, attempting to build themselves up as gods to the common Imperial soldier so the Sith would be welcomed once they revealed themselves.
In 1,002 ABY, the Sith revealed themselves to the Empire, at which time most of the Imperial forces immediately swore loyalty to Darth Aevum. Some Imperials, however, including Emperor Luthor Elyurius and the Imperial Knights, resisted. In retaliation, Aevum used the Force to crush the Emperor’s neck in front of his troops as a show of strength. As a result, the Emperor’s followers swore allegiance to Aevum—the Imperial Knights, however, defected from Imperial territory—who declared herself Empress and became the leader of the Empire.
When the Galactic Alliance and the New Jedi Order learned of Aevum’s rise to power, they began preparing for war, just as Aevum had done. This build up of forces sparked a cold war between the two superpowers that would last for nearly a decade, during which time Aevum consolidated her rule and trained an apprentice, Darth Judicar.
Darth Aevum’s reign over the Empire lasted until 1,010 ABY. As the Empire was continuing its preparations to launch its war against the Alliance, the Sith forces grew impatient after nearly a decade of preparing. Knowing that the Sith and Imperial forces alike were looking for someone to take action, Aevum’s rule over the Sith was challenged by Darth Judicar, who aimed to become the Dark Lord and Emperor. Judicar killed his master in lightsaber combat, declaring himself master of the Sith, ruler of the Empire, and the one who would fulfill the charge given to Aevum by Darth Invidius to defeat the Alliance and the Jedi.
In the year following Aevum’s death, the Empire and its Chiss allies continued to build their forces. Darth Exodeus succeeded Judicar as Dark Lord and Emperor, and Exodeus ultimately launched a war against the Alliance and the Jedi by destroying The Will of the Force, the Jedi flagship, in 1,011 ABY. The Alliance promptly declared war on the Empire, which re-organized itself as the New Sith Imperium and began fighting the Alliance and Jedi Forces, carrying out that which Darth Aevum began decades earlier.
Personality and traits
Prior to organizing Sith followers, Layda Aren was a devoted follower of the Sith cults and teachings, worshiping the dark side for many years. Once she began to organize and she became Darth Aevum, however, her earlier fanaticism waned and was replaced by acts of strategy and conquest.
Behind the scenes
Darth Aevum is a non-playable character created for Star Wars Legacies, the fifth and current role-playing timeline on TheStarWarsRP.Com. She has never been role-played, and instead was created specifically for the backstory of the timeline, which began one in-universe year after the character’s death.
- Star Wars Legacies (First mentioned)