Force Organizations: Sorcerers of Rhand
By: Jason Deitzel
The Sorcerers of Rhand hail from the planet of the same name. Its location remains a mystery, knowing only that the Rhand system is in the Perann Nebula deep in the Unknown Regions. The origins of the sect stemmed from three previous groups that supposedly immigrated to Rhand an eon before even the birth of the Jedi Order. These three groups, apocalyptic death cults, would influence their ideology, .
Over these countless millennia, the Sorcerers of Rhand became the autocratic rulers of Rhand and the nearby star clusters, known as the Nihil Retreat. Calling themselves Rhandites, they came to believe in a power greater than the Force that they referred to as the Dark. By following the nefarious will of the Dark, they believed they were bestowed with special powers.
Their philosophy became known as The Way of the Dark, with its central doctrine being destruction was the will of the universe and the Dark. This nihilistic belief became known as the One Truth: “Only power is real, and the only real power is the power to destroy. Existence is fleeting. Destruction is eternal.”
With destruction as the cornerstone of their sect, the Rhandites paid little attention to the Force and whether it had a light side or dark side. For them, the void and absence of life that utter destruction created was what they thought exposed the foundations of truth. Using the Force was merely a tool in order to achieve an end.
Rhandites believed that the goal of being a pawn of the Dark was to consume oneself with its destructive nature and emulate that in the rest of the universe. And once their devotion reached a certain level, they believed they were granted the gift of Darksight, an ability to peer into the future and see all the known possibilities. Rhandites most devoted to the Way of the Dark would select which futures brought the most glory to the Dark and sought these destructive paths.
The oldest known member of the Rhandites was Lorekeeper Blessed Toxmalb, known for being the personification of entropy the death cult worshiped. Of an unknown species, his body was ravaged by the affects of using the dark side: pale, dry, flakey skin, eyes so sunken they look like dark holes, tall and lanky, and dressed in ragged decaying robes with a shadowy crown imbedded beneath his skin.
Toxmalb was well-versed in numerous languages, his croaking voice reflective of his physical features. To further emulate death and decay, he used the Force to control “darkflies” to inhabit his flesh, using them to lethally attack any enemies. The crown grafted into his skull allowed him to fully control and communicate Rhandite “Pawns,” who were enthralled to do his bidding. Because of his immense sway over the mind, he was fully immune to any mind tricks. He was also a master of “destructive” Force powers, like Force Lightning, Force Grip and Force Rage.
The most notable Rhandite was Cronal, better known as Blackhole. Cronal became exceptionally gifted at the use of Darksight and left the Sorcerers of Rhand, travelling to Dromund Kaas and joining the Prophets of the Dark Side. There, he was able to spread the Way of the Dark philosophy and gain such prestige that Emperor Palpatine made him the Director of Imperial Intelligence under the codename Blackhole.
Cronal would later form a splinter faction in the Galactic Empire, under the identity Shadowspawn, spreading his Rhandite philosophy until his death at the hand of Luke Skywalker. However, despite his impact on galactic events, few knew of his connection to the Sorcerers of Rhand, much like how few knew of Emperor Palpatine’s connection to the Sith. As a result, the Sorcerers of Rhand remained an obscurity to most of the denizens of the galaxy.
The first appearance of the Sorcerers of Rhand can be found in the novel Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor, but are also mentioned in various RPG supplements and source books, like the Book of Sith: Secrets from the Dark Side, for example.