Saga - ST My Awakening (TFA Spoilers and Speculation, Kylo Ren)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by darth_treyvah, Jan 4, 2016.

  1. darth_treyvah

    darth_treyvah Jedi Master star 3

    Dec 26, 2005
    Title: My Awakening
    Author: darth_treyvah
    Characters: Kylo Ren, Supreme Leader Snoke, Rey.
    Summary: Kylo Ren finally achieves his destiny.

    It's so much clearer now.

    The Knights of Ren, my Knights, stand around your sanctum. They neither helped, nor did they interfere in what was ultimately the inevitable. My lightsaber is a raging torrent, a cross of crimson-orange, pulsating through the fragments of what your body used to be. It's as though the cracks in its synthetic crystal have widened to the point of revealing the abyss which it hid inside: the seamless darkness and its burning heart spreading out and engulfing everything in sweet, quiet nothingness.

    I have finally unlocked that power: the power that we both sought. The difference, of course, is that you sought it vicariously. And I have gained it directly.

    The Force is now a crystalline storm of light and shadows. From the void comes a shifting kaleidoscope of possibilities: a perfect clarity. It was different before, when I was so much more confused.

    I had so many doubts. Back then, much was expected of me: or so I thought. I was the next generation. I was the son of a prominent stateswoman and galactic legend: both of whom became Generals. But I was more than just the child of the people that formed the New Republic. I was the nephew of the last Jedi: the person who was supposed to become the first Jedi Master in two decades.

    My mother had that power too, but she was afraid of it: terrified of what it could signify. Yes, you know as well as I do that much was expected of me. And I was scrutinized, and tested. My mother never let me forget the dangers of the dark side. Whenever I was angry, or sullen, or I questioned too far she had two words for me. Just two.

    It was worse than my father. It was as I told her back at Starkiller Base. My mother and father fought constantly. They grew apart in their duties. He would drink. And while he never hit me or my mother, he could be mean. And when he wasn't mean, he was absent. I wasn't sure, then, what hurt worse. At least when he was sober and present he would be the nicest man ever: spoiling me and taking me out to places I shouldn't have been as a child. He was afraid of what I could do, and even now I can't really blame him for it. I inherited his and my mother's tempers, along with the maternal power to do something with it. But he tried. He honestly tried.

    I think we stopped spending quality time together the day we were at that theatre and he left, promising to come back in just a minute. I waited two hours in that theatre before an irate Chewbacca came sent by my even more furious mother. My father never lived that one down.

    But my mother was worse. She was absent as well, but she always tried to keep tabs on me. She attempted to give me the best education, and made sure I knew about all her moral causes. She was kind and passionate, but she never let me forget. She never let me forget Alderaan, or the Bothans that died to stop the second Death Star, or all manner of atrocities the Empire inflicted on the galaxy.

    Or him.

    You taught me a lot about him. It was those two words of my grandfather's chosen name, when he had been reborn, that she would use to shut me down even when I went a little out of line. That name was a mark of shame and guilt. It was who I could become if I didn't tow the line. My ancestor was the bogeyman that snatched away small children that didn't behave. At least my father, in one of his more coherent drunken rages, came out and said that I had "too much Vader in me." My mother would just use or think of his example. Somehow, then, it hurt a lot more.

    It was almost a relief when they sent me to be trained by my uncle: at first. Maybe I wouldn't be abandoned or controlled this time around. He'd always seemed to be kind, if not somewhat distant. But I was angry and I missed my parents. Luke Skywalker was a good and patient teacher, but he wasn't my parents. Whenever he did talk about my grandfather, he always made sure to mention -- to all of us in the class -- that Darth Vader and Anakin Skywalker had been two entirely different people, and that one consumed the other ... until he had the strength to free himself. I wasn't sure why, but those words just felt so ... hollow.

    My uncle never treated me differently from my classmates, then, but I always felt as though those lessons were specifically tailored for me to hear: as the heir to the Skywalker bloodline. But when I trained as a Jedi, I learned a lot more before I met you. I saw that the New Republic wasn't perfect. There were riots and civil disorders on various worlds. Sometimes a star system would erupt into civil war and the Senate either delayed, or didn't do anything about it. I knew my parents had been involved in stopping these conflicts, but they were like small brush fires in a forest of dry kindling: for every flame they put out, several more would take their place. You would have thought they'd have learned from their days in the Rebellion.

    And our class had the power to stop this. We had the strength to go out and pacify these trouble spots. But we were never ready. Ever. My uncle claimed we still had much to learn and he told me to be mindful of my anger. And I was an angry child. I can't deny that now. I had reason to be. And I knew from our lessons that we would be beholden to the Senate: this body that dithered around and let another status quo rot and patches of chaos rip through the weakening fabric of the Galaxy.

    I wondered if this was what my grandfather had gotten tired of dealing with. I wondered if this was why he acted.

    Finally, one day I had enough. I left. I traveled to the Unknown Regions and met you. You challenged my way of thinking. And as you introduced me to the First Order and the Imperial Archives I began to see a whole other picture. Between your stories and what I researched, I began to see the truth.

    My grandfather had been born a child slave on a world that the Republic never bothered to claim from the Hutts. He was forced to leave his mother behind by the Jedi Knights. They were afraid of his potential. They grudgingly accepted him into their ranks for it and heaped all the responsibilities of a monastic life of duty, and the heavy mantle of the Chosen One. He couldn't even be himself. He had to live a secret life with my grandmother as he fought and bled by a thousand cuts in the Clone Wars.

    Then he sacrificed everything to avert a vision of her death: only to lose everything else. My grandfather gave his family, his friends, his body, and his soul to the true power of the Force: until all that was left was a duty to the highest ideals for which he was born. Order and balance.

    He failed. I know that now. But Darth Vader helped destroy those that maintained the rot in the galaxy. He assisted in removing a weak and corrupt government from power, and ending a conflict that a fallible galaxy had been headed towards regardless of the Sith or the dark side. Even when his old Master had been sent to kill him, and left him for dead: broken and burning he persisted in what he could to achieve his destiny.

    He made the hard decisions. And he began the cycle. He destroyed the Jedi and the Sith. He helped create the first Galactic Empire. My family had downplayed all of this, seeing only the arbitrary results of his work and not the overall picture. My own uncle undermined and eroded away his strength with the light. I'd always sought to become as powerful, as great as Darth Vader.

    But now I understand. Darth Vader had potential, but he failed. He was a frail, broken, sad old man dependent on a mask to survive. His connections betrayed him and kept him from overthrowing his Master sooner. It prevented a true golden age.

    You made me see where he came from. Where we all came from. At first, I was weak. Despite the bloodline's origins in the Light and Dark, I was just a man. But you showed me the way, Master. You showed me that the light is not a weakness when accompanied by a dragon that continues to eat it like its own tail.

    It didn't happen right away, but that day you told me what my last test would be -- when I killed my own father -- that was the day I understood a truth. Rey said to me that I was afraid of never becoming as strong as Darth Vader. But now, with my lightsaber in hand, I know the truth.

    I have become more powerful than Darth Vader ever was.

    Not even Vader could kill his own blood. And in that moment, I wasn't just the man I named myself, or the boy who was named after my grandfather's attempted killer in the hopes of it appealing to my better nature. I am both of these. I am neither. I am beyond them.

    There is no certain point of view. There is only one.

    I have tapped into that place of power now. It's been a few years since that time of awakening, but you have seen, and experienced, the results. The fact is, the point where I realized that I killed my own father, that I could kill him, was the same moment when I understood that I could do anything.

    I could even destroy you.

    Yes. I knew it was time. Even if you did not. Oh yes. I could feel you drawing on that power of yours, trying to escape in the ways you had before, but I reached into the Force ... and I stopped you. Even now, looking down on the remnants what you were, scattered into the Force like so much wind, I feel the power growing inside of me. I feel the scars on my face, and the old bowcaster bolt wound in my abdomen repairing themselves, regenerating, using your techniques by my new will ....

    So thank you, my Master, for teaching me everything you knew. It is now time that the Knights of Ren, that the First Order, be led to their true destiny. And as for you, Rey, wherever you are, I would like to thank you. I'd like to thank you making me question my purpose all those years ago. It was the catalyst of my training and my new perspective. I literally couldn't have done it all without you.

    You were not the only one that awakened that day.

    And now, I think I will return the favour. Yes. I see it now. I think it's about time that I finally teach you the ways of the Force.
  2. Sith-I-5

    Sith-I-5 Force Ghost star 6

    Aug 14, 2002
    Where in the Original Light have you been hiding? This was brilliant!

    I am normally repulsed by a wall of text if it feels too long, but this drew me in from the first sentence, all the way till the end. Very sophisticated wordage used, which I liked.

    Early on, you could do with a few commas; and perhaps this would run better: There are no points of view. There is only one.

    A drunk and mean Han doesn't agree with my head canon, but what you did for Leia, and Kylo's thoughts and motivations were simply awesome. In fact, frag the TFA Visual Dictionary; I am latching onto this piece of yours to explain what the drokk was going on to take Kylo to that place in Episode VII.

    Nice insertion of the theatre experience. A single moment that stands out to the lad. Telling that Leia did not come to pick the boy up herself.

    You have done a fantastic and insightful job here. Well done. =D=

    PS. ^:)^
  3. RX_Sith

    RX_Sith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Mar 13, 2006
    Great introspective into Kylo and the reasons that he became who he is right now.
  4. darth_treyvah

    darth_treyvah Jedi Master star 3

    Dec 26, 2005
    RX_Sith Thank you. I can't wait to see how this character develops in the films.

    Sith-I-5 I used to be on here a lot more, but I only had a token presence here when my old stories were never restored from the Move. But I'm glad you enjoyed this fic. It's interesting to look at our different headcanon perspectives on Han and Leia. I mean, they have both gone through a lot and there are psychological consequences from that. I actually hope that Han himself wasn't like this, but I can definitely see him having parenting issues of some kind. And Leia too of course. I changed the "point of view" quote into something else as well which might make more Star Wars sense, as I'm sure Ren would have heard this in a lecture by Luke at least at some point. Thank you for your advice and the Force be with you. :)
    AzureAngel2 and Sith-I-5 like this.
  5. Carlos Danger

    Carlos Danger Jedi Master star 2

    Jul 25, 2013
    I like that explanation for why he needed to kill his father. Nice!
    AzureAngel2 and darth_treyvah like this.
  6. Findswoman

    Findswoman Ammonia-Breathing Fanfic Mod in Pink star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Feb 27, 2014
    Thanks so much for referring me to this story. I very much enjoyed "To Finish What He Began," and the same fantastic writing and in-depth character exploration are in evidence here. The use of the mysterious "you" really drew me in—of course it's Snoke, and that means that this story and "To Finish" are in a kind of dialogue with each other. You do some very intriguing unpacking here of Ben's/Kylo's viewpoint (yes, a fraught word, I know!), his admiration for his grandfather (the idea that Anakin sacrificed all to the Force does make a kind of disturbing sense), the motivations behind his parricide, and his understanding of its implications. "Not even Vader could kill his own blood" also makes a certain kind of disturbing sense—and it fits perfectly with all the other things about Kylo that make him not only a very compelling villain but also arguably a scarier villain than Vader. Could he really destroy Snoke, too (if that indeed is the "you" here)? Entirely possible, entirely possible. [face_thinking]

    And then things shift at the end as he brings in Rey and hints at her role in his journey to what he has become. Am I right that you're interpreting her here as [hl=black]a sometime fellow Jedi student of Ben's who played some specific and leading role in his disenchantment and turn[/hl]? There are any number of ways that could go, of course, and I have a feeling that it might be left vague on purpose. Which is not a bad thing at all, as it will then fit in with whatever Episode VIII will have to offer. I like it when writers can do that sort of thing. :cool:

    Bravissimo, and thanks once again! =D=
  7. darth_treyvah

    darth_treyvah Jedi Master star 3

    Dec 26, 2005
    Thank you Carlos Danger. I'm glad that explanation worked for you. :)

    You're very welcome Findswoman. I had these two story ideas in mind for a little while after I saw the film and it makes sense that they are both in conversation with one another: the Master and the Apprentice as it were. This story is a speculative one that takes place ... perhaps six years after The Force Awakens, perhaps in the final film of the Trilogy. At this point, Kylo Ren is reflecting on his past after finally finding the power to depose his Master and become the most powerful darksider in the galaxy.

    The terrifying thing I wanted to bring across is that he genuinely believes, or wants to believe in his truth. So from that "certain point of view" that he so derides, he really does think that his beliefs and actions, along with those of Darth Vader, have a merit to them: the merit of a hero.

    His reference to Rey is actually from The Force Awakens: specifically that point where she turned his interrogation of her against him and figured out his fear. My argument here is that by having him face that fear, that he would never be as powerful as his grandfather, made him seriously look at it and combined with the news from Snoke's farsight that his own father would be confronting influenced him to make a decision long in the making. He is also referring to his and Rey's first duel, and recalling his promise to teach her the ways of the Force ... with a very twisted, and punitive intent. In other words, he wants to "school" her in more ways than one.

    Anyway, thank you once again for reading my story and providing your thoughts on it. It is appreciated. :)
  8. Ewok Poet

    Ewok Poet Force Ghost star 6

    Jul 31, 2014
    An excellent characterisation of Kylo. He seems to be developing grandiose delusions and given his super-confident approach to it (which would, ironically connect him to the Jedi); one has to wonder if this is what Snoke made him believe, what happened when he turned to the dark side once his confidence took an u-turn, or both. And, at the same time, there is his seemingly forgotten reality that is Ben Solo, unconfident, whiney and all that, right underneath that funny mask. Emo Kylo Ren from Twitter, in a more realistic form, right here! :D

    And then, there is this:

    I think we stopped spending quality time together the day we were at that theatre and he left, promising to come back in just a minute. I waited two hours in that theatre before an irate Chewbacca came sent by my even more furious mother. My father never lived that one down.

    Niiice nod to Revenge of the Sith!
  9. darth_treyvah

    darth_treyvah Jedi Master star 3

    Dec 26, 2005

    I think at this point that Ren is thinking about what he was, and where he came from and all the steps he took -- including his father's death -- to get to where he is now, and now he is looking at what he is now many years from The Force Awakens: and what he might become afterwards. I think his only connection to the Jedi at this point was his family and his past experiences while, essentially, doing the job "right" by his standards. But yes. I see Ben Solo's childhood and past as something he had to overcome to get to this point in his development.

    Also, it took me a few moments to see what you meant by that nod and now that I see it ... wow. I really forgot about the Opera that Palpatine and Anakin had attended in Revenge of the Sith. I never even intended that parallel but it kind of works when you think about all the connotations involved. Once again, @Ewok_Poet, thank you: both for your kind words and your support.
  10. Ewok Poet

    Ewok Poet Force Ghost star 6

    Jul 31, 2014
    You know psychopaths waaaay too well and you talk about this whole development the way somebody would recite a shopping list. Not sure if you're working for some government intelligence office or the police, but this reply gave me shivers.

    I'll be onboard with whatever you decide to write next, most definitely. :D
  11. KyloFan

    KyloFan Jedi Knight

    Jul 5, 2016
    =D= Brilliant! Loved how you got inside his head and how all the pieces shaped the person he eventually became. Not sure where this character goes in the next two films but I thoroughly enjoyed your version.
  12. darth_treyvah

    darth_treyvah Jedi Master star 3

    Dec 26, 2005

    Thank you, KyloFan. I know the New EU went in somewhat different direction with the novel Bloodline (along with the fact that, as it turns out his lightsaber crystal isn't synthetic at all, it is just cracked and thus generates massive amounts of power), but I am still very proud of this story. I don't know where he is going either beyond Episode VII, but I look forward to seeing how far he will come.
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  13. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Chosen One star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    I like your characterisation of Ren a lot, because it shows pretty well that he has a seething lava river inside his veins. His drive, his ideas throw a shadow on the sacrifice that Vader made before the end of his life... at the moment, he became Anakin Skywalker again.

    You can also see what went wrong within the Solo family, which makes me sad. As a kindergarten teacher I face parents now and again who do not listen. Whose actions, based on helplessness and fear mostly, turn their kids into ticking time bombs, too. Especially when those children have problems in the emotional and social sector.

    But what mostly fascinates me about your story is the choice of words. It is very rich, powerful language (for example: The Force is now a crystalline storm of light and shadows. From the void comes a shifting kaleidoscope of possibilities: a perfect clarity.)
    Ewok Poet and darth_treyvah like this.
  14. darth_treyvah

    darth_treyvah Jedi Master star 3

    Dec 26, 2005

    Thank you. I wrote this before the novel Bloodline came out, which changes a lot of what I wrote here. But I am proud of this small vignette of our new antagonist. But I hope there will be more expanded on his story before the end. And I can only imagine the different families and unfortunate issues you have seen as a kindergarten teacher. I'm not sure how the Solo family really functioned in the Sequel Trilogy or before it, but I imagine there were some issues with Kylo Ren that were more than just him being "a bad seed." And thank you for your compliments. I try to describe sensations and feelings as much as possible in stories, which I'm not making something entirely dialogue-ridden.

    If I recall properly, you make art with images and watercolours? I attempt to do so with words. :)
    Ewok Poet likes this.
  15. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Chosen One star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    I actually do make art with watercolours, oil crayons and acrylic paint.

    And you succeed to create art with words.

    As for Kylo Ren, during my three year long job training as a kindergarten teacher here in Germany I had to take college classes in pedagogics, psychology and social pedagogics. There I was confronted with family therapy. As wikipedia puts it: "it tends to view change in terms of the systems of interaction between family members. It emphasizes family relationships as an important factor in psychological health."

    You also try to see the other "systems" a child is part of.

    I can imagine that Kylo was very lonely as a kid and ended up with the wrong peer group: Snoke and the Knights of Ren. :p
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