Let Tesshen's death be a reminder to all of us: Even the best of us can die. Sacrifice for the sake of duty yields to neither age nor experience, but courage and honor are not the province of youth alone.
Tesshen Manytrek (/ˈtɛ.ʃɨn məˈni:.trɨk/) was a male Vorsyt Centurion of the Order of Keltrayu and Consul of Tenpue. A master of Soresu and a widely respected Centurion, his death on Tenupe sparked the Vagaari War.
Born on Uyiq-Mest in 98 ABY, Tesshen was the son of a duranium engineer and a government councilor in his city-state. His parents were on hand for the arrival of the Golden Empire in 104 ABY and its engineering contributions to Vorsyt society. Even more importantly, their home city (and the mountain peak around which it was centered) was chosen as the site for the Empire's Royal Observatory.
Mr. Manytrek was one of many local engineers brought in to supplement the Empire's crew of offworld technicians, while Mrs. Manytrek was responsible for overseeing the appropriation of resources. As such, Tesshen had a front-row seat to the construction of the Observatory and the comings and goings of agents of the Empire. With many Vorsyt scientists going to study offworld and Vorsyt soldiers enlisting in the Armada, Tesshen developed an early fascination with his world's new government and the prospects of leaving Uyiq-Mest.
The Royal Observatory was completed in 108 ABY, and while Tesshen's parents attended the dedication hosted by the Minister of Science and Technology and Prince Tariun Sakaros, Tesshen himself was not allowed inside. It would be another year before he was allowed to visit the facility, on a school field trip with his science class. However, visiting at the same time were Novices Sorrik and Tarzg Sav'lir, along with the Centurions Melnanooin and Eskol Kaartinen.
Both Centurions perceived Tesshen's Force sensitivity almost immediately and used the Observatory's own HoloNet transceiver to contact Tariun Sakaros. Given authorization to act on his behalf, they and the two Novices went home with Tesshen to discuss his joining the Order of Keltrayu. His parents were initially skeptical, and his mother was particularly worried—the story of Keltrayu's death had long since become widely known on every member world of the Empire. However, Tesshen himself pleaded for the chance to go, and with patient coaxing from the Centurions (and the subtle support of the two Novices' politeness and obvious self-confidence), the Manytreks eventually conceded.
Taken to the Sith Star for training, Tesshen took quickly to his new environment. Like most Vorsyt children, he had spent the past five years attempting to learn Orhyo alongside his native language in school, and so he could communicate with a reasonable degree of proficiency with his instructors and fellow Novices. His athleticism also meant that, while he had much to learn about channeling the Force through his own body, he could keep up with the conditioning required of Novices.
Rin and Tariun Sakaros and the various Centurions given teaching responsibilities in the Order all found Tesshen to be an apt and devoted pupil. He read regularly, and on a variety of subjects; aside from his assigned courses and his study of the Force, he also dabbled in astrophysics, xenobiology, and the history of both the Tetrarchy of Mezlagob and the various systems of the Empire. More than once, his teachers had to hold him back from learning too much, too quickly, but whenever this happened, he would redouble his efforts to master what he already knew or seek out some other, unexplored area of knowledge.
Due to the strength and leaping ability of Vorsyts, most Centurions expected Tesshen to devote himself to Ataru, and after initial exposure to the first five forms, Tesshen himself was considering it seriously. However, after watching a training exercise between Aquila Corcer and Eskol Kaartinen, the Vorsyt began to reasses the plan. When Corcer was killed shortly thereafter by Zhin-Vel, Tesshen resolved to devote himself to Soresu instead.
The deaths of Aquila Corcer and Melnanooin also had an impact on Tesshen's training. Rin pointed out that both were excellent Centurions, good at their work, and they had still fallen in battle. She added that mastery did not come from knowing as much as possible, but from being exceptional at everything one knew. With this new outlook and the brutal realities to back it up, Tesshen recommitted himself to his training. While his thirst for knowledge was unslaked and he continued to learn whatever he could, his instructors noted that he had stopped asking to learn more, but was now trying—without being told—to master what he had been taught completely.
In 119 ABY, Manytrek was commissioned as a full Centurion himself, in an unusually quick ten years of training, and at the age of twenty-one. He had an early exposure to warfare, being one of the Centurions who participated in the First Battle of Shel Du in 120 ABY, but though he came out unscathed, he preferred other assignments. As a law enforcement officer, he was courteous and professional, but also efficient and quick-witted. His abilities helped to dismantle a five-system smuggling ring in the Vall`to sector in 121 ABY.
Assigned to assist the Ministry of Diplomacy along with fellow Centurions Chindal and Corr Shaasa in the mid-120s, Manytrek proved himself an able and persuasive negotiator. Among his internal assignments was the arbitration of a labor dispute among the Xhal of Gamitor, along with Chindal and Kyzk. Tesshen was selected to be part of Rin Sakaros's Royal Guard in 127 ABY, and was present for the death of Vessyk and the Cleansing of Ekshi a few months later.
Serving in the Royal Guard until 130 ABY, Manytrek gained firsthand political experience at Rin's side. Immediately after, he was assigned as Consul of Dolomir; his younger sister Noelle became his Consular Aide the following year. Manytrek led Dolomir until 133 ABY, when he became a Praetor-Recruiter for the Order of Keltrayu. He remained in this role, with occasional assignments to other duties, for two years. In 135 ABY, he became a Praetor-Instructor in the Citadel, and would occasionally teach Soresu lessons along with Eskol Kaartinen.
Manytrek assisted in the ground assault at the Battle of Naporar during the Conquest of the Chiss Ascendancy, and accompanied the Royal Integration Corps team which began the arduous and unpleasant process of bringing the former Chiss capital, Csilla, into the Empire after the war. His seemingly unflappable calm was grudgingly respected by the Chiss, and in 138 ABY, Rin named him Consul of Tenupe.
A warrior's death
The Royal Army garrisoned at Tenupe was enough to keep local troublemakers in only the planning stages of rebellion, but was woefully underequipped to face a full invasion force. The Vagaari attacked Tenupe with a vengeance, and its offworld communications were quickly jammed. Diplomatic shuttles were readied at the Consulate, but Manytrek and Kyzk let the first few go, intending to fight alongside their soldiers against the Vagaari.
As the Vagaari sacked the palace, however, it quickly became apparent that they defenders had no hope. Ordering Kyzk to flee with his Chiss aides aboard the final transport and bring warning to Rin, Manytrek sealed off the access hallway connecting his offices to the hangar. The Vagaari soldiers poured into the corridor, but Manytrek's quick, tight Soresu swordplay kept them briefly stymied and left a pile of dead Vagaari for their comrades to clamber over. But even Manytrek could not hold them all off alone forever, and he fell in a hail of blasterfire.
A hero's legacy
Tesshen Manytrek's death sorely affected much of the Empire. Normally stoic, regally composed Noelle broke down and sobbed when she heard the news, and Kyzk carried the guilt of having left him behind, however necessarily, for the rest of her life. Rin Sakaros was so outraged at both the attack by the Vagaari slavers and the murder of one of her best Centurions that she ordered the Empire's fourth speciecide against the Vagaari.
When the Chiss Rebellion broke out during The Tribulation, the overwhelming majority of Tenupe's Chiss population flatly refused to have anything to do with the rebels. While some cited purely pragmatic concerns (Tenupe was on the border of the former Ascendancy and nearest the Vagaari threat), many considered Tesshen Manytrek a hero and were stunned by his decision to sacrifice his life for his Chiss subordinates. He was considered living proof that the Empire's claims to work on behalf of its people might not be pure propaganda after all, and after the Vagaari War, a statue of Manytrek was erected in the Consulate on Tenupe.
Though his body was lost to the Vagaari, Manytrek was given a memorial at Keltrayu's Tomb, and was publically mourned on both Uyiq-Mest and Dolomir. Several Centurions, including Kieran Sapphire, Te`net Organi, Noelle, and Chindal, along with Tariun Sakaros, speculated that Manytrek would have been the natural candidate to be First Centurion had he lived.
Powers and abilities
In maturity, Tesshen Manytrek was famous throughout the Order of Keltrayu as a master of Soresu. He could hold his own against nearly any enemy indefinitely, and only Rin Sakaros, Tariun Sakaros, and Kieran Sapphire could ever make contact with him in sparring. He was considered the Order's second greatest master of Soresu, after Eskol Kaartinen.
As a Centurion, Manytrek received extensive training in telekinesis and telepathy. He could sense the emotions of others around him, sometimes even inexperienced Centurions, and was proficient in the use of mind tricks. As a former Royal Guard, he also had a finely honed danger sense.
Manytrek was intelligent and charismatic, and had the gift of persuading others to see his point of view. It made him an able negotiator and also enabled him to defuse tension and hostility. The people of Dolomir considered him a good and capable leader, and even most of the Chiss of Tenupe complained only about the Golden Empire in general, not Manytrek in particular.
Appearance and personality
1.85 meters (6'1") tall and well-muscled, Tesshen Manytrek had an athletic build and kept himself fit despite his long stints in leadership and diplomatic assignments. He had long blond hair which he usually kept in a ponytail, and blue eyes. He carried a single, straight hilt lightsaber with an amber blade.
Manytrek was inquisitive, constantly seeking to learn through his life and attempting to comprehend fully everything he learned. Novices considered him a helpful and patient instructor, and those under his command felt he was a firm but fair and principled leader. His self-sacrificing death on Tenupe demonstrated his courage and his commitment to not only duty over himself, but also the lives of others over his own.