Correlian Rum - (Version 2)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction Stories--Classic JC Board (Reply-Only)' started by Daphne, Aug 8, 2000.

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  1. Daphne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2000
    star 3
    I am unhappy with the way I have written the second part of my story, and without the ability to edit, I thought reposting might be easier than telling readers which parts to ignore.

    Chapter 1 is the same, and it will follow this post (in manageable chunks I hope).

    Chapter 2 will begin the new material.

    I hope all my old readers will forgive me. I have been trying to figure out a way to change my mind without editing, and I couldn't come up with one.

    Apologies all around.
  2. Daphne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2000
    star 3
    Correlian Rum
    Chapter One
    "Conflict and Darkness"



    The smell of smoke hung in the air and the cloaked figure slipped through the crowd as if by magic. Eyeing a table covered in shadows and seperated from the bustling crowd and wailing jizz players by a somber atmosphere, the man walked over, silently slidding into the vacant chair.

    His companion failed to even glance up as he made his presence known. In another corner of the galaxy, their brown robes and tan tunics would have called attention to the pair like a beacon. Here, amidst the dark clothes and military uniforms of the spaceport, they blended in well. Reticence and magic helped to further mask the presence of two Jedi in a house of smugglers, scoundrels, and thieves.

    Wordlessly, the servo-droid brought 2 shot glasses filled with Correlian rum to the table. The transaction, credit chips for liquor, was silent - noted only the value of the chips. Real Republic credits rather than traded district coins often seen in out of the way ports of call.

    Lifting his glass, the older man downed yet another glass of the burning liquid. Behind a gray beard, his lips twitched into a frown. Pronounced in its controlled expression.

    Sliding a datapad towards his younger companion, he watched as comprehension dawned. The message was one of foreboding, for the planet and the Republic. Fighting with a trace of fear and anger behind his eyes, the young man drank the rum as if it was a panacea - fit to cure his troubles.

    Standing to leave, he dropped the datapad to the floor and crushed it beneath his boot.

    As the last customers drifted out, the cleaning droid disposed of the piece of crushed metal and wiring. It's only message still emblazoned across its still screen.

    The King is dead. Long live the King.

    ----------------------------

    The crowd swirled around the ballroom floor. Colors of every hue intertwined as flowing skirts and long tailcoats touched and passed, twisted and dipped. In the aura of gaiety which filled the room, two outsiders were conscious of their visibilty. Plain clothes and dull colors made a statement.

    Drawing further into his brown robe, the younger man tried and failed to simply disappear. His companion scanned the room for danger. Danger hidden and venomous. The tension and fear was thick amongst those on the veranda behind them, and the Jedi realized the stakes pinned on their shoulders.

    A guard attired in a dark metal and black plumes approached the pair, breaking their self imposed silence. "Master Jedi, His Majesty wishes to speak with you."

    Stepping back the guard noted that it was almost as if a conversation had flowed between the thoughts of the Jedi, for as the older man turned to follow, the younger, his apprentice stepped into his place and began to watch the crowd with the eyes of a prophet.

    Once the steps to the low platform of the veranda have been mounted, the guard melts away into the wall. The unbroken line of men protecting their sovereign adjusts to accomedate another body while the cloaked figure bows before the throne.

    Straightening, he looks towards the finely robed man seated upon the golden chair. "You wished to speak with me your majesty?"

    "I am afraid so. Your efforts have thus far been fruitless. Tonight was the best opportunity they will have until next year's ball."

    Nodding silently, the Jedi waited for him to continue. "I am wish for you to return to Coruscant. Take along my pledge of alliance with the Republic and news that I will sign the treaty." Pausing the sovereign appeared to loose himself in thought. When his voice resumed, it was weaker, unsure, yet stubborn. "Take with you also my daughter. Keep her safe from the forces threatening our home."

    Waving his hand in dismissal, the king stood - slowly, as one with a boulder resting between his shoulders and a world on top of them.

    The Jedi bowed towards the retreating form. As he stepped down from the veranda, the guards noticed that the younger was instantly by his side. Their heads bowed briefly in
  3. Daphne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2000
    star 3
    Staring into the mirror, he takes a few moments to adjust his clothes. The black fabric is unfamiliar, and the absence of his lightsaber rends his heart. *Why should they fear what I do? I can do nothing. Over and over again, I have proven, I can do nothing.*

    One last day has dawned. One last day before the Council. One last day before their punishment. One last day to live with his failure. One last day and that one last day is one more without her.

    The string of beads finds its way into the folds of his overcoat. Black beads disappearing into the heavy black cloth. Still staring into the mirror, he does not believe. Black smudges claim the pale skin beneath his eyes while the redness of blood claimes the whites, surrounded by the reddening, the pale blue pupil's have taken on a surreal look. But he does not believe. Skin fades and light reflects the growing tranluscence of a body wasting away. The black garmets transform him into the star of nightmares. But he does not believe.

    Blind to the stares and whispers, the journey through the Temple is endured. As a booted foot reached the street, he attempts to melt into the crowd, but no amount of magic could make this man look at home here.

    As he descends the levels, he wonders if her hell is real. The red fire of her story books prevailing over the benevolence of the Force. He wonders and he doubts, for there is no light in his world.

    His master's has watched him retreat from the world each morning and return only to cry and whisper dire words through troubled sleep. This morning Qui-Gon wonders, //What will it take for him to believe he will die?//

    -------------------------------------

    Within the cold walls, soft footsteps fall. The echoes tell of a destiny unfullfilled and a future destroyed. Killer. Sinner. Traitor. Dying for crimes long imagined, no justice would prevail here.

    The courtyard beyond this cell stained a with the blood of martyrs. Dying by the scores, victims of the firing squad, the hangman, the mobs.

    Pacing within the space outlined in stone, dreaming back to the soft voices telling stories of wars long ago, of sacrifice and of victory.

    "No victory to be had today."

    The stone answered in silence.

    The screams of vengence could be heard by all who passed by. Bowing their heads in solemn prayer, all those above merely walked by. Life over truth. That is how her people survived.

    "Let them all die for this! Traitors! Thieves! Let him die for his failure! Let it rest on *their* heads! Not ours!"

    Collapsing in anguish, her thoughts turn to the blue sky above, and the dark earth which captures her people day by endless day.

    Murmering quiet revenge, the thoughts of many are spoken aloud. "The King is dead. Let him rest in peace forever."

    -------------------------------

    Twelve faces stared silently at him and for the second time in his life, he doubted his ability to withstand their gaze. The first time had been on the day his padawan had turned, today was the day he would admit his apprentice, his son, was lost to them.

    Bowing deeply, he drew a deep breath. Continuing was painfull, but mistruth would be unforgiveable.

    "Masters. I am here as summoned."

    The silence rang in his ears as 12 faces looked back at him, unmoving. Finally the silence was broken.

    "Summoned too your padawan we did. Obi-Wan Kenobi, missing is he?"

    "He is... unable to appear before you, Masters."

    Twelve sets of eyes gazed steadily back at him. *They know. How can they know?!*

    "Tell us you will of the mission to Taekan."

    Swallowing painfully, the Jedi Master began to speak. A painfully detatched voice began the recitation of the mission. People, places, dates. Facts, only the facts.

    He related the many failures they had encountered. Their failure to find those who threatened the king. Their failure to return the Princess safely to Coruscant. Their failure to draw up a treaty which was agreeable to all. Their failure to prevent the coup. And then he paused. The silence grew until it stifled all
  4. Daphne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2000
    star 3
    The bar was thick with smoke and scoundrals. Qui-Gon could not help draw the parallels between this place and a thousand others, yet this one, this dank place where he had first told his padawan the news - this was the place he returned to each day.

    The darkness threatened to invade his very soul. Poetic that master would follow apprentice into the abyss. Spying the hunched figure cloaked in blackness, the Jedi would not help but wonder if this boys clothes were mirrored by his very soul.

    Fighting the tears which threatened to overcome this last bit of resolve, the great warrior focused instead on the evidence of this man's guilt. The daily holos recieved in private from Taekan; the commands screamed from the depths of nightmares; the ghastly black uniform of the Schielen Guards; and the silence. Silence when the mission, any mission was mentioned. Silence over the loss of his saber. Silence when it came to her. Yes, he was certain it all came back to the girl.

    But none of that mattered now. Daily reports flowed into the Republic of starships and troop carriers amassing in Taekan airspace and daily came indicators of his padawan's involvement.

    Long had he tried to ignore the signs. Long had he tried to blame the boy's changes on his personal failures on the mission. Long had be blamed himself for his failure to support his Obi-Wan. But no more would his excuses be allowed.

    Crossing the bar as if through a fog, the Jedi paused before reaching out - breaking the invisible barrier between two men, two friends, between a father and a son.

    Deeply shaken, Qui-Gon allowed the words of his own master to play once again through his mind.

    "Suffer the Republic will not to allow a traitor to live." Those words had passed guilt onto the shoulders of his padawan, but they had broken his heart. "In the hands of the Jedi, more merciful it will be."

    The grief in his master's eyes had been too much, as had the sympathy. *I will never again take an apprentice.* Twice he had lost. This time would be too personal. It may well kill them both.

    As the boy's chin lifted, he stared into the depths of a soul he had once known well. Seeing understanding and forgiveness for the act he was about to commit nearly drove his resolve to pieces, but his hand traveled ever closer to the hilt of metal at his waist.

    ----------------------------

    Again the guards came, and again the blindfold darkened already dim vision. Struggling more for the principle than a real chance for escape, she writhed under the grips of the two strong men - hands on her shoudlers - marching her away from her cell.

    The purpose of this daily exercise escaped her, but its terror did not. One day soon, she knew that the journey would end in the courtyard and her life would end. A moment of drama recieving cheers and catcalls from those who would watch.

    The cold concrete made an hard impression on her knees and the stopped in a cold echoing chamber - toady like every other day. And today, like every other day, HE was here.

    She could hear his steps the same in daylight as they were each night. Here, unseeing, unsure, they struck a deeper fear in her heart than all the times they had approached her cell. Deep in her brain, she could her the logical part of her mind struggling to surface, but the gloom that pervaded her psyche was caught in a web of mangled fairy tales. *They don't just come out at night father, for here He stands in the light of day...*

    The noises surrounding her were soft - lulling her once again into a sense of oblivious discomfort. Frightening familiarity.

    The buzz of a holo projector came again, and she tried her best to look defiant. The blood the trickled from her mouth were further evidence that whomever watched was not to see her, they were to see a prisoner.

    If a voice still existed in ther throat, she would have screamed.

    -------------------------------------

    He hung back. Duty might have bid him to witness, but friendship forced him to grant privacy - all the privacy that could be achieve
  5. Daphne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2000
    star 3
    The figure strode through the palace. Salutes were fired off at his passing figure. Clearing the long entry way, he vanished into a side corridor, missing the arrival of General Kassen by near moments. An observer might have thought the young commandant used magic, but others within the walls knew better.

    The General's staff gathered thickly around the conference table. Their desire to witness his reaction to the good news attracted them like moths to a flame.

    As the sound from the holovid filled the room from it's sunken windows to its vaulted ceilings, the General smiled.

    "Today on Coruscant, Jedi Obi-Wan Kenobi is mourned. Behind me you will see a pyre light in his memory. Reports tell us that the Jedi's death was linked to the Taekan military buildup. The Jedi Temple is releasing no further information at this time..."

    In the depths of the palace, the magic man cast his eyes heavenward in defiance or remembrance or something else entirely. Waving his wand before the eyes of the last guard, the magic man watched the man fall, deeply locked inside a prison of sleep.

    Drawing back his ebony tunics, the magic man drew a shaft from his belt and there, in the darkness, he created light. The beam of sapphire tore the door from its hinges and brightened quarters where all light was gone.

    Kneeling before the pitiful sight of a girl huddled on the floor, the man lifted her softly into his arms. Before rising, he drew from his pocket a long string of black beads, and fastened them about her throat with gentle words. "I am a man of honor, your highness."

    Rising quickly, they vanished from the palace. Later, some would claim it was magic.

    ---------------------------------------

    The dim light drifted through the open window. Moving first one arm and then the other, Maeyan was conscious first only of the light. Slowly her mind joined her body in awaking. The yellow dye on the paneled walls, the soft coverlet drawn up to her chest, the light robe wrapped around her - rising from her resting place came easily.

    *I'm home.*

    As her bare feet touched the soft cloth covering the floor, Maeyan rose. The fragrant aromas drifting from the kitchen drew her across the cabin's bedroom.

    The warm fire in the hearth drew her, kneeling she lifted the cover on the metal pot suspended above the embers. The scent of stew filled the kitchen, and she might have pinched herself, but her heart told her it was too real to be a dream.

    Rustling in the main room stopped her from considering how she had been transported from the dim cell and the General's troops to the comfort of her father's cabin.

    Unsure of many things, but certain whomever had entered was friendly, Maeyan drew her robe around her tightly and stepped through the open door.

    Blue met bronze as eyes locked across the room. Her hand flew to her throat to clutch the beads, newly returned to their place. In a voice barely above a whisper, she whimpered, "Obi-Wan."

    He stopped dead in his tracks. The firewood by the door long forgotten. For three long weeks, he had watched over her sleeping form. The healing trance he had eased her into had obviously worked, as he had watched her grow stronger every day.

    Staring at her, the Jedi finally bowed deeply. "At your service your highness."

    Startled by the sound of his voice, she found her voice after a moment. "Rise Jedi and tell me why I should allow you to live."

    *Well, she hasn't tried to killed me yet. Half the battle's been won.*

    "You're here. You're alive. You're..."

    "You are a traitor Obi-Wan Kenobi."

    The tone of her voice was teasing, but her words and her eyes, were harsh.

    Bowing his head in acknowledgement of her anger, the young man inclined his head towards the table. "There is my saber, take it if you choose."

    Sitting on the ornately carved wooden bench, the man waited for her reaction. Maeyan glanced between the Jedi and his weapon. The memories were too fresh for her complete trust, but the red rimmed eyes following her told a different story.

    D
  6. Kresa Rei'de Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 1999
    star 2
    Total bummer!! But the loyal and hard working admins are even now trying to regain our unlimited editing power!!!

    I eagerly await the re-worked portions. I understand what it's like to be unhappy with something you've written.
  7. Calamity Jinn Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2000
    star 4


    Sorry you had to repost this Daphne. Then again, it's such a good story it's definately WORTH reposting!
  8. Latara Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2000
    star 1
    whew! that was way too hard to find. what are you doing down here?
    I need to know how version 2 turns out. POST!
  9. Calamity Jinn Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2000
    star 4


    Yes, please keep reposting Daphne. This was a great story.
  10. Latara Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2000
    star 1
    *sigh*
    just hoping for another post.
  11. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    More. You just kept me in absolute rapture for twenty minutes!

  12. Calamity Jinn Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2000
    star 4


    "Daphne...." (looks around) "Helllooooo."

    Now I know you're around 'cos of all the other wonderful posts on other threads.

    More. Please? Pretty please?
  13. Calamity Jinn Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2000
    star 4

    Okay... I'll just go and wait over there...
  14. Healer_Leona Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2000
    star 9
    What? Still no more???

    Yes, yes I know, real life, numerous threads and other priorities. Just letting you know we like it here.
  15. Latara Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2000
    star 1
  16. Healer_Leona Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2000
    star 9
    Daphne, I'm still hoping for a post soon.
  17. Daphne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2000
    star 3
    *Deep breath*

    I finally finished the rewrite of Chapter two. I would like to start some regular posting on this thread if I can get a small base of readers.

    So here is the first rewritten post.

    -------------

    Interlude

    "Of Fire and Brimstone"



    "Difficult this task is. Ready for it you are."

    Qui-Gon bowed in unison with his apprentice. Somehow he knew the words of the ages Jedi Mater were directed more towards his apprentice than himself.
    The trek to their quarters was silent, respectfully so, but with none of the chatter he had once expected from his young apprentice.

    Qui-Gon expected his apprentice to demand mission details the second the door closed behind him. But this, their first mission since.... since he'd found his son again, felt different - it felt almost like a different padawan. Several longs moments passed, until Qui-Gon gave in to his own curiosity. "Don't you want to know?"

    Shrugging his shoulders, Obi-Wan strolled into the kitchen. "You know, we could always eat in the cafeteria in the morning. That way we could grab a bite to eat before we leave. It *is* a long trip master."

    Qui-Gon tried to hide his amazement, but it wasn't working. Shaking his head, he marveled at how much the boy had changed over the last few months. Gone was the impatience, the petulance, the lasts scraps of childhood. Somewhere along the line, he had come to share his home and his heart not with a small boy dreaming of being a Jedi, but a man capable of the most difficult task. He was respectful of Obi-Wan's privacy, but somedays, like today, he had to wonder what had happened on Taekan to change him so.

    As if Obi-Wan caught onto his thoughts, he smiled the same lopsided grin he had used since infancy. Qui-Gon imagined that someday he was going to break a few hearts with that look, if he hadn't already. Obi-Wan's voice drew him back to the task at hand - feeding them both, and preparing for the mission.

    In his heart, he feared it would be the last he would take with his apprentice. The Council had been repentant at Obi-Wan's return - now, they were eager. The changes in his padawan had not gone unnoticed and it seemed as if he could not even pass one of the members in the hall without hearing encouragement directing him to release Obi-Wan for his trials.

    Pulling the dishes from the cupboard, Qui-Gon began to cover the table with the proper dishes and place settings to hold the meal Obi-Wan prepared in the kitchen. Glancing in the boy's direction, he couldn't help but push the thought of trials away. They had been back together for such a short time, and Qui-Gon wasn't ready to let go. *Once he becomes a knight, I may never see him again.*

    Obi-Wan carried in the first platter, trying to focus on the table, rather than the datacard containing their mission and relevant information. His silence regarding the upcoming mission wasn't patience, it was apprehension. To say he had a bad feeling about it would be an understatement.

    The evening meal passed without incident, and the two shared details and history of the Trade Federation and a small planet neither had visited, Naboo. Only the fervent desire of the Senate Trade Committee and pleas from the Queen had forced Jedi involvement, and Obi-Wan hoped negotiations would be swift. He didn't feel quite ready for this. *Will you ever be ready again?*

    The holo terminal sprang to life as Obi-Wan cleared the table. He could hear his master answer it. The gravity in his voice undisguised. Watching as he older man returned to the table, he noticed a pinched look about his face.

    "It has gotten worse, hasn't it?"

    A sigh was his answer.

    That evening, two Jedi departed for the Trade Federation flag ship. As the two departed the quarters, Obi-Wan's last glance was at the strand of black beads laying on the polished metal shelf over his bunk. Venturing into the main room, he drew his brown robe tightly around him, shutting his eyes briefly before walking into the hallway with his master and closing the door behind them. Obi-Wan cou
  18. Calamity Jinn Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2000
    star 4


    Oh, THANK YOU SOOOOOOO MUCH for posting some more Daphne!

    Add one to your loyal band of readers!
  19. Healer_Leona Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2000
    star 9
    Don't forget me!!!

    Obi-Wan's final thoughts before leaving hang heavy in my heart. I wish...well everyone probably knows what I wish.

    I thrilled to see this continue.
  20. Daphne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2000
    star 3
    I have to draw the line at page 5...

    Or maybe it's just because I had to look twice to find it....

    UP!
  21. Healer_Leona Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2000
    star 9
    Do Calamity and I count as a small base???

    Alright lurkers, stand up and be counted!!! Even I know you're out there.
  22. Daphne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2000
    star 3
    Well, two readers isnt' quite what I expected, but I'll up this with a small installment and see what happens.



    Chapter Two

    "In the falling light."




    The ceremonial robes seemed to weigh her down. The dark fabric felt suffocating, trapping her in a place where she was powerless to act - powerless to intervene. Alone. That was the worst feeling. Knowing he didn't know whether or not she lived, he didn't know how greatly she loved him, he didn't know to come for her. Alone, because even if those things weren't true, she could not allow him to rescue her.

    Her life had been created to serve the people massing in the courtyard below. Even though she could no longer serve them as a leader, she would not betray them now. Understanding Obi-Wan's pact with the devil, she winced. He had done it to protect her, she would do it to protect her people. *No, not yours - not any longer.*

    The ominous creaking of the door was more frightening than the clanging of the grating which had held her in the cell. This sound reminded her that now she consented to her jailer, she volunteered to remain. Somehow. her heart told her the bravery of her actions even as her mind cried out against her own actions.

    *You sent him away.* //I saved his life.// *You betrayed his trust.* //I saved his life.// *You denied his love and yours.* //I saved his life.//

    The persistant tapping of the guards boots, told her that the door had opened for a purpose. Turning, she softly drew the thin veil across her features. The ceremony was a refuge against a well of emotions, but more practically, it helped her to deny what he had done. Beneath the length of darkened fabric, the scars were hidden, as were her expressions, which she feared would mark her thoughts as traiterous.

    *What does he expect? My undying affection?*

    Following the uniformed men, she let her feet carry her forward, until she stood in the dim twilight before the filled courtyard. The view from the balcony was the same - the presence beside her was not. Rather than the comforting warmth of her father's hand resting on her shoulder, she bristled beneath the letcherous touch of the general, the traitor-king. Today, before the crowd, she might act to spare her people. She would give legitamacy to his rule, she would consent to become his wife, but she would never relax beneath the dark tendrils of power he sought to hold in his hands.

  23. Calamity Jinn Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2000
    star 4


    Noooo! You should follow your heart! Oh, why do I think this is going to cause even more trouble for Obi....

    Poor Obi!!!!

    Well, I loved the post. PLLEEEEAAAASSSE keep going with this story. The plot's really good and it's well written!
  24. Healer_Leona Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2000
    star 9
    Ditto everything Calamity said.

    Oh, what the poor girl is doing...has gone through,breaks my heart.
  25. Daphne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2000
    star 3
    The heavy curtains blocked the colored rays sent down from the sun, plunging the ornate room into darkness. This was not the suite she remembered from childhood, not the room where her parents had sheltered her from nightmares - it's light was gone, devoured by the black hole that was now her husband. Inside, she could feel herself dying, just a little more every second.

    Walking through her home, greeted with bows and mumurs of approval might have reminded her of what used to be. Behind the motions of obesiance, she could glimpse the fractured trust of those that still believed, believed her her, believed in their freedom, and the arrogance of those who knew, knew of her broken will, knew of her pact with her own demon, knew of their own victory.

    Running her fingers lightly over the heavy wooden vanity that anchored one side of the room, she cringed with the knowledge that the monster touched this same surface where her mother had once sat and lovingly brushed the braids and twists from her daughter's hair. As the memory flowed through her mind, she withdrew as if burned by the cool grain of the table top.

    The creak of the wooden door, and the staccato sound of his boots crossing the polished wood floor drew her attention, but stubbornly, she refused to turn, to acknowledge his presence, to acknowledge her new reality.

    The heavy touch on her shoulder warned her a moment before he turned her towards him forcefully. "Ah, my pretty queen. How poetic that our life together begin here, in the room where your father's life ended." The fear and disgust rising in her stomach threatened to overwhelm her as the General reached his hand to her face and peeled away the layer of fabric from her face. "Let this be one tradition we eliminate. The people should see the consequences of disobience." Flinching away as he ran one, thick, tanned finger along her face, down from her temple, along her cheek, and to the corner of her lips - following the newly healed scar, Maeyan swallowed down the bile that grew in the back of her throat.

    "Pity you decided to be so foolish. I would have prefered my wife untarnished. But do not fear. I will take you this way. I fear, I cannot say the same for your Jedi pet." Swaying lightly on her feet as the strong man circled her, working the complex series of laces with experienced hands, she pushed down thoughts that he had found her Obi-Wan. Her own death she could have requested with ease, but mere knowledge of his would undo her.

    "It is a shame really. I thought he might be a man of honor, but all this time and he never came for you." The grating noice of his tongue clucking, ate at her. "Perhaps you might be spared this, if not for his cowardice. I thought Jedi did not flee from battle." Relief at knowing he still iived was greater than any sense of betrayal. For if he lived, he would come for her eventually, wouldn't he?

    The cold air shocked her skin as the dress fell away from her, revealing a thin silk shift flowing from her shoulders and nothing more. Not for the first time, fear filled her, but the young woman clutched at her memories of Obi-Wan. Memories that told her good people still did exist, still did fight, still did love - and love her.

    "Do not worry though, dear girl, for I will erase the memory of that traitor. I will even kill him for you at my first chance." The thick grating tone, brought hidden tears into her eyes. She would not shed them, never give him the satisfaction. *And never let my Obi-Wan die at his hands.*

    Feeling the rough hands pulling her down on the bed, and the raspying voice whispering crude orders into her ear, she fought to hold her memory of her night in the Jedi's arms close to her heart, trying to keep the walls built around her heart from falling and leaving her another victim of the general and his
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