Once again, I’m back into writing. I apologize for not getting Battlefield of the Soul out, but it’s not coming along as I wanted it to. So, to tide you over, here’s a short, introspective piece. Three characters–manipulator and servant of evil, young warrior not yet become legend, and shaper of destinies. One moment in time. Eternity.
The First Time
Deep, ancient blue-gray-green eyes, ever moving and changing like the sea, pierced him. The moment stretched out, each heartbeat a breath of possibility. A glimpse of sudden cognizance flashed into the oceans beyond. The seer was only a boy, but a boy in whose blood was rooted a deep and ancient power—the latest scion of an ancient bloodline.
Palpatine did not frown in the face of the boy’s scrutiny. He merely gazed back at the child with a benevolent curiosity in his gaze, adding in a touch of mild irritation, such as one might feel at being stared at by a boy in his early teens. Sidious, however, was active behind steel-hard mental walls of ice. The boy was either too caught up in innocent bewilderment to take the hint that Palpatine’s annoyance flashed at him, or too engrossed in searching for the source of his erudite and completely unexpected intuition—or he was far braver than Sidious would have expected from one of the idiotic Jedi children. They were all soft, easy to frighten. Except this one, it seemed.
The boy was perhaps sixteen years old, but was already fairly tall—already taller than Palpatine, though still dwarfed by his mentor—and broad shoulders held the promise of future strength, though as yet the boy was scrawny, thin. Where robe and tunics slid down over one shoulder, revealing the collarbone, what seemed to be a long, winding scar showed—perhaps from the lash of a whip, perhaps from something else. Thick, wild auburn hair, cropped short, bleached by the sun and tossed by the wind, gave him a slightly ruffled, untamed look. Somewhat angular features—the high cheekbones shadowing slightly hollow cheeks in the harsh light. It was the boy’s eyes, though, that drew instant attention. Ever changing, shifting from blue to green to almost-gold—soft hazel-brown, not acidic yellow—curious, that—to silver and gray, always changing, always moving, like the future that Sidious could feel ahead. They were the eyes of a seer, one who looked into the future not only in dreams, but in waking life, one who might—be he bold enough—in the future, prophesy. It was as if the Force was waiting on the boy’s every thought, every action. Perhaps the child was not the Chosen One—the confused figure of myth—but it seemed as if he was the one who held the balance. Curious. Beautiful.
Power swirled around the boy, heady, intoxicating. There was a hint of something foreign to Sidious there, beyond everything else. It was hard to lay a finger on. The boy was present, yet remote, something that he could never touch. The hideous ethereal light that gathered around the boy hissed a warning to the secret Sith. You shall never have him. You shall never understand him. You shall never be able to touch him. Sidious brushed it off, and still, his unease remained.
A faint crease of confusion and distress appeared between the boy’s ginger brows. Sidious smiled inwardly. Kenobi. The resemblance was remarkable, unmistakable. There was no other name the boy could have borne, in his opinion. What if the patriarchal nomenclature assigned him his father’s name when he resembled his mother more? Or if the matriarchal had neglected to call him by his father’s name? There was no doubt that however many times the extraction was watered down, by some freak or whimsy of nature the boy’s blood was distilled and re-distilled into a potent fire, until he was the very reflection of the famous Erin Kenobi herself. By some odd chance, he was a throwback to those ancient warriors of the wars between Sith and Jedi. No matter the future that lay ahead of him, by one path or another he would become a foe to be reckoned with. No, not to dark, unless Sidious stepped in, but as yet his fate was still uncertain. If the boy chose to walk away from the Order, he had the potential to become a great statesman, a political rival. If not, then he would in truth become a true and veritable master to challenge the masters of old.
A true wielder of the Force.
A true Jedi.
Then the boy’s master called, and the child turned away, the pretty illusion shattering in a moment. Sidious smiled inwardly. There was time yet. He would wait.
Far away, in a world beyond the Force, so far beyond it that it was the Force itself, the mirror and yet more real than its reflection, a tall, shining shape raised itself from meditation posture. One of its—her—chosen tools had just been saved. Her brother and his pawns would not snuff out her future champion. He was chaos, and the young Jedi was a fighter; he was sadism, and the child would suffer. But she knew something her brother did not.
The young warrior was sealed with her seal, and no matter what her brother threw in his way, he would overcome it. Even by his death. The child knew something of which the Sith had no cognizance. He was unaware of the knowledge, yet it would serve him well.
A life, given in sacrifice, is renewed and given back to the one who gave it away. A life of service is the price of eternity.
And thus, the far-away child, so much more fragile, so less omniscient, so less powerful, was greater than she of the many names, she the watcher, she the shaper. She did not resent this, she accepted it. She was Ashla, Micha’el, Daughter.
But she was not, and never would be, Obi-Wan Kenobi.