Part I – Aftermath
The galaxy had seen many things; many bad and horrible things.
It had seen the best of the best rise and fall; lead them to victory, only to turn on them later. It had seen the best of men and the worst. Some said it was fate, others said it was the Force. The Force had led these great men and women to their heights and then had brought them to their lowest.
There were many on that list, the list of the saviors who had turned to become their worst enemies, bringing others into their fold like walking into a store. The galaxy remembered, as did the Republic. But for some, for those special individuals, they remembered things much better.
For one man, he remembered all too well and unfortunately for the Republic, he wanted revenge. He wanted to make the galaxy what it should be and he would have what he had spent half the year trying to achieve. Only one thing stood in his way.
One man that could possibly bring it all to an end.
But he wasn’t worried. Either way, he’d have his revenge. This time, the fate of the galaxy wouldn’t be decided by philosophy or politics.
This time…it was personal.
Most of the Republic had never heard of this new world, but when the Star Forge had been destroyed, when the evil dark lord Malak had been defeated, it was here where the fleets of the Republic armies landed.
Everyone had been amazed at the beauty of the planet, of the ancient people that resided there. In a few days, the Republic would hold talks with these Rakatans, hoping to place this planet within the Republic alliance, even though the world was within the Outer Rim.
But the morning after the Star Forge victory, the crew of the Ebon Hawk were awarded the Republic’s highest medals of honor for their work in discovering the tool of the Sith, defeating Darth Malak, and pushing back the enemy. That night, the planet of astounding beauty held a large and loud victory celebration for the galaxy’s heroes.
For one member of that crew, being by himself was more comfortable than being paraded around as he had. He had shaken so many hands that night, nodded to those pompous Republic senators, praising him repeatedly.
But he had done his duty; he had smiled happily, pretended to enjoy himself, when all he wanted to do was escape. He finally seemed to get his wish, when people began to lose themselves within the excitement of the moment.
So now this young man stood, perched on a small cove, slightly separate from the main land, but able to look out at the ocean and the sandy beaches. From his viewpoint, he could see their ship on the shore, amongst some other, smaller fleet ships. But even this sight — or the gorgeous sight of the sea — could not distract the young man from his own thoughts.
This man, this seemingly unremarkable man, was in fact one of two halves of the same person.
One half was that of Jayden Korr, a smuggler who was recruited by the Republic during the war with Malak. His service was needed and he was placed — or rather added — at the very last minute to a Republic flagship known as the Endar Spire. Little did he know that being assigned here would bring him to the very celebration he was now avoiding.
Jayden Korr was remarkable from day one. He and Commander Carth Onasi, after escaping the Sith that had attacked and boarded their ship, had been the only crew members to survive . But there was still hope. One Jedi, a Bastila Shan, had managed to use one of the escape pods to land on Taris.
But that was only half the story, and thus, where the other half of this man would emerge.
The other half of this young man was someone named Revan. Revan, at one time, had been a Knight of the Jedi Order, only a few tasks away from taking on his own student one day. But this Revan, this celebrated knight of the galaxy, had fallen to the dark side soon after the Mandalorian War.
A Jedi Knight turned Dark Lord; a hero turned villain; and as of all this mess, a villain turned redeemed soul. The problem with all of this was simple, at least to him. The two halves knew of each other, but did not know more than that. Like two sides of a coin, there were two different people, two personas, though both exhibited traits of the other. But the problem again was this:
Where did Jayden Korr end and where did Revan begin?
And this wasn’t even the biggest problem this young man faced. He took the news of being a former lord of the Sith well and adjusted to being called Revan by his crewmates and others. What he didn’t except was the lying that had taken place around him, mostly from her.
From the first moment he had seen her, he was attracted to her. It was a physical attraction, yes, and if his memories involving experiences as Revan were true to some extent, Jayden Korr loved the ladies and the ladies loved him. Not Bastila Shan, though.
He admitted what she had acknowledged once — that he had been the one to flirt, to make innuendos, to drive her absolutely mad. And he could say now that, yes, in a way, he enjoyed riling her up.
He’d meant it when he said she was cute when she was embarrassed. That only managed to fluster her more. And the more they traveled together, the bolder he became when pursuing her.
He was sure it wasn’t the bond they had forged — the one she had forged with him after saving his life on his flagship — but he could feel her attraction for him and he did his best to make her laugh, make her flustered with his comments and sweet talk and he was rewarded when she relented, admitted that there was something between them, only to say it was the will of their bond and even if there was more, their Jedi code forbid it. And as he would come to discover, the more he couldn’t do something, the more he wanted it.
That’s why it was so hard for him to keep his emotions to himself. His love had saved her, saved them both, he knew that and he refused to let the council take that away from them. Besides, she needed him now more than ever.
And she was there, watching him stand, overlooking the seascape. She had felt his anxiousness and annoyance from being surrounded by all the Republic higher ups. Bastila Shan had a hard time being in that room as well. No one knew about her fall to the dark side and how it was Jayden — Revan — that had saved her.
So while they congratulated her, she had done the same as he; smiled politely, thanked them for their praise, but all the while she wanted to be away…that’s when she realized Jay…Revan…had done exactly that.
Bastila excused herself and went in search of him, tapping in to their bond to locate him. But she couldn’t feel anything from him, which made her quicken her pace, only to find him standing there, on a cut away section of the beach top, one to view the ocean with.
Even there, the young woman found herself once again attracted to the former lord. His head now had the beginnings of black fuzz, matching the five o”clock shadow on his face that mingled with the Fu Man Chu goatee he sported. He had changed into a white shirt and khaki dress pants, his hands buried in both pockets.
Making her presence known their link, she walked up and stood beside him. Neither said a word, content in watching the tide ebb and flow across the sands. “Get tired of the bureaucracy?” he asked.
“I don’t really feel as though I deserve any of the praise.” She whispered.
“You do.” He said.
Bastila shook her head. “Jayden…”
“Revan.” He interrupted. “My name is Revan, Bastila. Jayden Korr is just a figment of the Jedi Council. He is no more a real person than a fire breathing gizka. He’s just a name.”
The young woman remained quiet, but whispered, “Speaking of which, the Council wants to see us tomorrow, regarding the…events of this mission.”
Revan sighed. He knew what was coming, of course. It still didn’t mean he had to like it. “What’re we going to tell them?” she asked, quietly.
“We tell them the truth.” He replied. “It’s not like they don’t have an inkling as to what happened.” Pausing, he glanced at her. “I won’t let them take you away from me.” He whispered.
Bastila sighed, not really wanting to dive into this. With everything, she didn’t even think she’d be a part of the Order anymore. If anything, she just wanted to make this night special, for the both of them. She…she needed him, especially after this.
They hadn’t had the time to reconcile since meeting each other on the Star Forge; both caught up with the whole aftermath and celebrations and awards. But now, at least for tonight, they could at least be together; for tonight, they could at least pretend they had a real relationship, one that could actually withstand the events that had taken place.
“Let’s not think about that, at least for now.” She whispered. She grinned at him, the first time since the destruction of the Star Forge and the death of Malak, and said, “And as for that last comment, I don’t believe I’m yours just yet.”
Revan looked over at her, a small smile on his face. This was new. Certainly he enjoyed baiting Bastila, but more often than not, she never initiated any come backs to him. So now, to have her openly baiting him made Revan all the more interested in continuing where they had left off.
“Seeking to challenge me, Bas?” he asked, a flirtatious look in his eye. His eyes trailed over her and he made no secret that he held desire in them.
Bastila, though slightly shocked at his directness, wasn’t about to back down from him. That was their relationship; teasing, but never to hurt and most times, an under laying of fondness — and now love — underneath the verbal barbs. Maintaining her grin, she folded her arms across her chest. “And if I am?”
Revan chuckled, before pulling her to him. “You know I love this little game of ours.” He whispered, placing his forehead against hers.
“As do I, in a way.” She said. “I’d rather not think about tomorrow and what could possibly happen to us.”
“Then don’t.” he responded. “No matter what happens tomorrow, Bas, know I love you. I don’t care what the council says or does, I can’t stop being in love with you. I won’t even try.”
“That’s a rather bold statement.”
“I’m a rather bold person.” He joked, causing a smile to grace her features.
“In case I haven’t said it in a while,” she began. “I love you, Revan.”
“I know you do.” He said. “I knew it before you did. And how can you not?”
“I mean, I’m such a great guy,” he continued. “Minus the whole former lord of the Sith, of course. But you must admit, you couldn’t help it.”
“Couldn’t help it?”
“I’m hard to resist.”
“You really are an insufferable berk, you know that.” She huffed. “And arrogant…couldn’t help…like you have some irresistible pull upon me.”
“Sweetheart,” he cooed. “I do. Even as you stand here, berating me for my roguish behavior, I know you are secretly annoyed that I could pick up on that or secretly pleased that our game of challenge hasn’t suffered from our time apart.”
Bastila stood there, mouth agape. “I…you…”
“And once again, darling,” he said. “You are incredibly cute when you’re embarrassed. You know, I think I was completely in love when we left Dantooine. So, don’t feel so bad.” Leaning closer, he whispered in her ear, “You have a pull on me, too.”
Sighing, Bastila placed her arms around his shoulders. Pulling back to look at him, she replied, “You’re a very odd man.”
“Whom you love, Bas,” he quipped. “Don’t forget that. You love me.”
The young woman chuckled. “Yes, I do at that.” She replied. They stood like that for some time before Revan whispered, “You know, if we went back to the ship, we’d be alone.”
The young woman tried her best not to let a smile onto her face, but she couldn’t stop a slight grin. “What exactly are you suggesting?” she asked.
Revan chuckled, letting all the emotion he was feeling flow into her mind. “I think you know.” He whispered. Pulling back slightly, he continued with, “We need to talk though. About…where we go from here.”
Though it terrified her, she nodded. “You’re right, of course.” She sighed, her eyes downcast. She looked up when she felt his fingers against her cheek. She could feel his own pain and anguish transferred through their bond, but he smiled at her before taking her hand in his and leading her towards the Ebon Hawk.
Their pace was slow and leisurely, their stance close together. Half way, he placed his arm around her shoulders, pulling her closer to him and planting a kiss on her temple.
They were met at the ship by the HK-47, an assassination droid that Revan had built in his dark lord days. The droid was on patrol, but stopped as soon as it heard footsteps coming from the foliage.
“Exclamation: Master! You mustn’t go traipsing through dark places like that. Especially when I am unable to protect you against any danger there might be. Statement: But I can see you have escaped that celebration unharmed. Are you coming to have me assist in some maiming or killing?”
Revan chuckled slightly. “Uh…no, HK, nothing like that.” He said. “But I do have a job for you.”
“Statement: HK-47 is ready to serve, Master.”
“Look,” he replied, casting a glance at Bastila. “Bastila and I have a…few things to discuss and we’d rather not be interrupted, you know.”
“Statement: Do you wish me to terminate any meatbags that come toward the ship?”
“No!” they both exclaimed.
Revan shook his head. “No HK.” He said. “I just… look, if anyone comes to the ship in the next…I don’t know, hour, then just send them away. After that, just tell them that…Bastila and I would rather not be disturbed, unless it’s an absolute emergency.”
“Clarification: Master, wouldn’t it be more productive to just keep away all organic meatbags? It’s been nearly forty eight hours, seventy three minutes, and twelve seconds since I was able to properly terminate an unworthy meatbag.”
“Well, then you’ll just have to wait another forty eight hours, HK.” Bastila replied.
“Query: Master, am I to begin taking directions from your ‘personal kinrath pup’?”
The young Jedi’s mouth dropped, while her companion did his best not to laugh out loud. He’d forgotten he”d put that little feature in. Clearing his throat, he replied, “HK, just go on patrol and anyone that seems unfriendly, you may shoot to stun. Only stun, HK. Further more, anyone who was aboard the Ebon Hawk is considered friendly unless other wise stated. Just…if anyone of them comes by, just tell them we are not to be disturbed, got it?”
“Statement: Yes, master.”
Letting Bastila go up the loading ramp before him, Revan whispered to the droid, “And delete program: ‘Annoy’ immediately.” He then followed the young woman inside the ship. He got an unknown surprise when coming aboard the ship: it was silent.
More often than not, the Ebon Hawk was always busy with some excitement, busting full of life with those he had come across in his journey. And what was more astounding was the fact that they continued to stay with him, even after discovering who he really was or had been.
Now all he had to do was convinced Bastila to stay with him as well.
He found her pacing in the main hold and by the look on her face, he could tell she was angry with him. On her fourth turn, she saw him, eyes narrowing at him. “Personal kinrath pup?” she asked.
He could feel her annoyance at him, but he couldn’t help but smile at her. He always did like the way she looked when she was angry with him. He struggled to say something, but he settled for just shrugging his shoulders.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if you programmed that into him.” She continued. “You did, didn’t you?”
Again he shrugged. “You called me a little boy.” He said, his lips forming a cute pout.
“On Dantooine!” she exclaimed. “And I was right. You and your childish behavior still astound me, even after everything we’ve…”
Bastila would have probably continued to outline his outlandish behavior since meeting him on Taris, but her lips and mouth were currently being engaged in a kiss. This man never ceased to amaze her, which again lead to her feelings for him and usually was tempered by the fear in knowing they were both in violation of an essential rule of the Jedi Order.
But she had promised herself that tonight was about them and that whatever happened tomorrow would…well, happen tomorrow. At least she could pretend tonight that this was how they could’ve been if things had been different, if they didn’t have this blasted code to follow.
But as soon as she thought it, she regretted it. Being a Jedi was everything to her…or at least it had been before she met him, for the second time, and it had been before she had fallen to the dark side.
Revan could feel her conflict, even as she kissed him with as much ardor as he kissed her. He could feel her loosening his shirt buttons before she slipped it from his shoulders. Even as she debated with herself, he could feel her desire for him starting to override any thoughts she had.
He sent his own desire back towards her, slipping in some rather risqué thoughts as well. “Like that, do you?” he chuckled, when he received a shocked moan from her. He nibbled a spot on her neck, before picking her up and heading towards the port dorm.
Entering the room, he laid her on one of the bunks, before kneeling next to her from the ground. “You’re a very bad influence, you know that?” she asked, a small smile on her face.
Revan nodded enthusiastically. “That had been my plan all along, you know.” He said. He looked down at her, loving the way she gazed back at him. “You’re beautiful.” He whispered, laying his head on her stomach.
She ran her fingers over a stubble filled cheek, before running her hand over the fuzz that began to cover his head. “You need to shave.”
He nodded. “Tomorrow.” He sighed. “That way I’m all prettied up for the Council.”
“I wanted to tell you.” She whispered. “I thought it was important that you knew who you were, but the masters thought it better you never knew. They thought maybe if you did, you might fall back into your old ways.”
“You were about to tell me.” He whispered. “On Dantooine, when we brought Sasha back, before we headed to Korriban. You said I wasn’t like any man you’d met before and you didn’t think I’d be so different after…and then you trailed off. I didn’t understand until the Leviathan.”
Bastila began to say something, but then stopped. Yes, she had almost slipped up and revealed what she couldn’t, but it hadn’t mattered. Had it?
“I’m sorry.” He whispered, his voice breaking her out of her reverie. She looked at him in confusion. Why was he sorry? “For what I said, after what Malak told me.”
She shook her head. “You were in your right to be angry,” she said. “To learn…that wasn’t the way I wanted you to find out. I still have no idea how he knew, how he knew before hand, before we even got on board.”
“I don’t blame you, you know.” He said. “I did. I thought…it seemed to happen so quickly. I was hurt Bas, after what happened between us. I didn’t want to leave things the way they were.”
“Revan, you have to understand…” she whispered. “You know…you know we can’t…”
“Hey.” he said, taking her hand and kissing it. “Tomorrow, remember? I just wanted you to know that stuff. We’ll deal with it, Bas, but we gotta deal with it together. It won’t do us any good if we can’t. I need you and you need me.”
He looked at her for a few moments, before smiling. “Have dinner with me tomorrow night.”
She looked at him in confusion. “Dinner?” she asked, arching an eyebrow.
“We’ve been on this rollercoaster for nearly a year,” he stated. “And I’ve yet to take you on a proper date.”
“Revan, you don’t…”
“But I want to.” He interrupted.
She regarded him for a bit, before sighing. “How do you do that?” she asked.
“Let all these…things, all the situations just…slide off you back.” She said. “How do you just…trudge through?”
The young man shrugged. “It’s not easy.” He whispered. “I…I was in a bad place after the Leviathan, not knowing what happened, not knowing what…what he was doing to you.” He closed his eyes, his pain on his face and radiating through to her. She felt the anger and hurt he had felt before leaving the ship to the grounds of Dresdae; the guilt and sadness he had felt when he and Carth had managed to get aboard the Hawk, without her.
“You almost had me, Bastila.” He continued. “I almost went with you; if it meant we could be together…I will never forgive the Jedi Council for what they did to me, to you…” Opening his eyes, his brown meeting her blue, he ended with, “I can forgive you, Bas. I don’t blame you for anything.”
The look in his eyes was so intense, she had to turn away, fearful that he could feel the heartache she felt when he had turned her away on the Temple roof. She hadn’t thought that would happen; she had hoped his feelings of betrayal from the Council, from Malak would lead him to join her, to come back to her; hoped that their love would turn him, to no avail.
“You’re kinder than I feel you should be.” She whispered. “I’m surprised no one said anything to me tonight.”
“That was my doing.” He murmured. When she looked at him, he continued, “Only Adm. Dodonna knows what happened, that and Master Vandar. I told them not to mention that you had fallen. What mattered was you came back to help us and the fact that you helped us — helped me — this entire time is more important. I’d rather have the bad press on me.”
“But why?” she asked. “You…you don’t even remember being the dark lord, why would you want to sacrifice yourself like that?”
Revan once again closed his eyes, before lifting his head from her stomach. “I have to face my problems, Bastila.” He replied. “I’ve never backed down from a fight, you know that, that’s why I have to take responsibility for my actions, for the…cover up the Council wanted to do to the Republic.”
“Do you really believe that?” she asked incredulously.
“You may think you were wrong for saying it,” he said. “But you made a lot of sense on that Temple. The Jedi Council did use us. They exploited the bond that was formed so you could dig around in my head to find whatever information I may have. And I know you, Bas.”
He turned to look at her. “I feel your guilt; about knowing who I was, what I was; about roaming through my head; about your feelings for me…” He leaned over her, his eyes locking with hers.
“You’re such a remarkable woman, Bastila.” He whispered. “You have this gift, this rare talent and everyone just sees you as the be all, end all of the war. Yeah, people call you arrogant and proud. So what? I am too. You know why? Because I know I’m the best. Very few people can best me at anything, but I know my limits and I’ll be damned if anyone pushes me around.”
“But that’s our problem, isn’t it?” she asked, in a small voice. “That we’re too overconfident, too arrogant, too proud.”
“Bas, our personalities didn’t lead us to the dark side.”
“Didn’t it?” she sighed, before putting her arms around his neck. “I’ve never felt this way before and I’ve certainly been taught that this kind of behavior…our behavior…can’t be acceptable.”
“Do you know why I fell, Bastila?” he asked, suddenly switching subjects. “Did you ever find out what…what triggered it?”
She shook her head. “I was only to see what you knew of the Star Maps.” She said. “I’d never go ‘roaming’ through your head, as you put it. That I could at least control, though…I think the masters may have wanted that.”
He gazed at her, the conflict within her at such a height he hadn’t felt before. The loom of the next day”s agenda, the council”s inevitable decision regarding them both…he knew she was frightened and he knew he was what she needed. He’d be damned if he let the council dictate this night for them.
“I love you, Bastila.” He murmured, lowering his lips to hers. “Nothing is ever going to stop that.” He again kissed her lips. “And I know you love me too.” Again, their lips met. “And I enjoy those little thoughts that go through your head. You know you’d rather not stay friends with me.”
“That goes without saying.” She retorted, moving her head to let him gain access to her neck. The worry she had felt during their talk was beginning to disappear in favor of the desire and arousal that threatened to overwhelm her.
Revan could still feel her apprehension, but it was slowly leaving in favor of her matching want. He wanted this, they both did, he knew and that’s why he didn’t stop himself from voicing it. “I want you so badly.” He whispered, feeling her shiver underneath him. He delivered another kiss before finding himself on his back, with her hovered over him.
“We should stop.” She breathed, her lips swollen, blue eyes smoldered.
Revan nodded. “You’re right.” He whispered. “We should stop.” Leaning up, he met her kiss, pulling her down with him. Their kiss was long, but short enough to make Bastila once again pull back.
He took a calming breath, trying to reign in his urges. “Sorry.” He gasped. Though her emotions matched his, he could feel a small bit of fear; fear of what was happening between them and it always came back to their fates tomorrow morning.
“I’m sorry.” He repeated, sighing, and rubbing her back. He readjusted himself, in order to let her lay her head on his shoulder. “Sorry.”
“You’ve said that three times now.”
“I want you to know how sorry I am.” He grinned. “And I am.”
“A small part of you isn’t.” she quipped.
“True.” He chuckled. “But a large part of me is.”
“Oh? Which part?”
Revan looked at her. “Are you purposely making lewd overtures at me?” he retorted. “I am shocked beyond belief.”
“You are not.” She huffed, borrowing deeper into his embrace. “In fact, you’re quite proud at the influence you seem to have over me. And you’re highly amused by the reaction I have to it.”
He chuckled and gave her a small squeeze. “I like having fun with you.” He said. “Do you remember our last night on Dantooine, before I started my trials?”
Bastila groaned. How could she forget that…incident? “I should’ve known right then and there you were trouble.” She said.
Revan again chuckled. “Yet you still came with me for a night of drinking fun.” He replied. “You know, you handled your liquor pretty well for someone who normally doesn’t drink.”
He felt her shift, cuddling against his side. He dropped a kiss on her forehead, saying, “Something’s bothering you.”
This time, it was Bastila who chuckled. “What isn’t?” she joked. Looking up at him, she continued with, “I guess I was wondering if you would indeed be the person the council implanted you with. If you’d be a smuggler, going through the galaxy, and picking up goods on your ship; being chased by the Republic, working for the Exchange.”
“Do you think I would be?”
“You certainly have the personality for it.” She quipped.
“A better smuggler than Jedi, huh?” he asked.
“No, I’m not saying that!” she exclaimed, lifting herself up to look at him. “Revan, you know I didn’t mean it that way, not the way it sounded.”
“I know.” He said, bringing her head back down to him. “I was joking, but maybe my career should’ve been that instead. I didn’t make a very good Jedi.”
“Don’t say that.” She whispered. “You were a wonderful Jedi and you still are. The prodigal knight who lead the Republic to victory…”
“And then brought them to their knees as the Dark Lord of the Sith.” He finished.
“Who was redeemed and stopped his apprentice from continuing with they had started.” Bastila protested. Placing a hand on his cheek, she said, “You saved me, even when I didn’t think it possible. And for that, you’re a hero to me.”
Gazing at her, he gulped, still reeling from their earlier activities. The look she gave, coupled with her deep felt thanks and love she sent flowing to him was almost too much. “You’re taking a big risk for saying something like that while lying in my bed.” He joked. All he got from her was a roll of her eyes.
“Good night, Revan.” She said, placing her head back on his shoulder.
He smiled, closing his eyes and waiting for sleep to claim him. Yawning, he opened his eyes back up. “Hey Bas?”
“In case I hadn’t mentioned it,” he said, closing his eyes once more. “You look damn sexy in black.” His smile returned as he felt her embarrassment, then a feeling of pleasure at him taking note of her attire while in the clutches of the dark side.
The next morning came quicker than anyone wanted it to. Those that had stayed at the celebration had come back to the Ebon Hawk much later than expected and for some, a lot drunker than they had been when the party began.
Revan awoke on his side, arm thrown casually over the waist of a beautiful brunette. Bastila was still asleep, arm tucked under her head, the hand of her other arm holding his, their fingers entwined.
The young man stayed a few minutes to watch her sleep before easing himself out of the bunk. He stretched his arms above his head before heading out of the port dormitory and going towards the communications center for some well deserved caffa.
The ship was pretty much quiet, with most of the crew still asleep. Turning the corner into the center, Revan spotted Carth and Canderous standing inside, a cup of caffa residing in the pilot’s hand.
Upon seeing the young man, the mandalorian laughed, saying, “And here’s the man of the hour.”
“Throwing me another party?” he smirked. “I’m fine with that, as long as the drink of choice is caffa. I don’t start my binges till late afternoon.”
“I’m surprised you’re up this early.” Carth replied, a knowing smile on his face.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” Revan said. “I’m surprised you’re up this early. I saw you put back at least four drinks within the first hour.”
“Yeah,” Canderous chuckled. “But we didn’t leave early and then have a certain Jedi princess following in our wake.”
“How’s that?” asked Revan, raising an eyebrow.
“Imagine our surprise when we come back here, only to have HK stop us because you and Bastila are otherwise ‘indisposed’.” Carth said. “Come on, Rev, we’re all adults here. What exactly was keeping you and Bastila indisposed?”
Revan gave a short laugh. “In all honesty,” he said. “Nothing happened. We had a lot to talk about, especially considering we’ll be heading to Coruscant as soon as you’re done, Carth.”
“The council.” The pilot spat. “I wish they’d give you guys a break. Especially after what you’ve been through.”
“Hey, you know how I feel.” Revan replied. “This…whatever’s between Bastila and I is gonna be under a microscope today and she doesn”t need that.”
“Neither of you do.” Canderous muttered. “I wish the almighty council could get their heads of out their asses. you’re both strong warriors and it compliments you. Perhaps if there were more Jedi like you…”
“Enough, Canderous.” Revan sighed, not wanting to get it to that. “I get your point though. That’s the problem. As much as she’s more relaxed with me now, as soon as we get in front of that council, Bastila’s back at their beck and call.”
“You just have to ride it out.” Carth said, patting the young man on the shoulder. “Relationships don’t come with instruction data pads, believe me.”
Revan glanced at the pilot, hearing the sadness in the man’s voice. The impact of what he had done as the leader of the Sith hit him again, especially when his destruction hit close to home with his traveling companions.
“You never answered us, by the way.” Canderous said, one grey eyebrow raised.
Revan tried to keep a straight face, but he couldn’t keep the blush from appearing. Clearing his throat, he turned and began making two cups of caffa. “I told you,” he said, making himself busy. “Nothing happened.”
“So that’s not your shirt we found in the main hold?” Carth asked, a smirk on his face.
The knight’s face got slightly redder. “Uh…” he stammered. “It…fell off.”
“By itself?” the mandalorian asked. “Or did it have help?”
The two men laughed at the younger man’s embarrassment. “So, where is our resident princess?” Carth asked.
At that moment, the said ‘princess’ entered the room, perfectly dressed and ready to start the day that lay ahead. “Good morning, gentlemen.” She replied. Seeing the caffa in Carth’s hand, she asked, “Is that caffa?”
Revan smiled at her, a dreamy look in his eye, one that didn’t go unnoticed by the other two men in the room. He handed her the cup he had made for her, receiving a shy smile for the gesture. She took a sip, sighing happily as the liquid entered her body. “So,” she asked. “What’re you boys talking about?”
“Well,” Revan replied, winking at Carth. “I was just telling the guys about our wild night last night.”
“Oh,” she said, restraining a smile. She turned, heading towards the doorway. “Then let me be the first to say it was quite enjoyable.” She looked over her shoulder, her gaze trained on Revan, whose mouth was open in surprised shock.
“Quite enjoyable indeed.” With that, she left, leaving Revan and Carth completely stunned, while Canderous only took a moment before letting out a huge guffaw.
The seasoned pilot turned to look at his friend, a grin across his face. “Well…”
“She doesn’t know what she’s talking about.” Revan sputtered, still running the conversation over in his mind. “Canderous, stop laughing!”
The trip to Coruscant was excited, at least Revan tried to make it that way. Knowing what could become of the relationship he pursued with Bastila, the redeemed knight wanted the minutes before the ‘execution’ to be pleasant for everyone. So, he traded barbs with Jolee, told risqué jokes to Mission with some help from Carth and Canderous, but most of all, he kept the tradition of baiting Bastila, to which the young woman always came to the call.
And when he thought she was completely aspirated with him, she surprised him by cornering him in the port dorm and hugging him. “So you’re not mad at me?” he chuckled.
“You drive me crazy.” She muttered from his neck. “But I have to thank you, for…doing what you’ve been doing.” She pulled back to look at him, regarding him closely. “It’s all a front, isn’t it? The way you appear to be so strong, as though nothing can really ever touch you.”
Revan looked at her, his face a mask of stunned silence, but his feelings betrayed a realization to her words and a small part of amazement that flowed from him.
“You don’t have to be strong for me, not always.” She whispered. “I…I appreciate it though, especially now, when neither of us knows what our fates will be when we fly into Coruscant. But for everything you’ve done, for the crew, for me, at least let me be there for you. Let me be strong for you, whenever you need it.”
The young knight was speechless, before he said, “You’re incredible.” Bastila giggled. “Hey, do you think your mother arrived there okay?”
“I hope so.” She said. “I really want to try and make up for the years we missed out on. A…a new start.” She looked at him. “Will…would you come with me?” she asked. “To see her?”
“You don’t have to ask.” He whispered, bringing his lips to hers. “I’ll do anything you want me to.”
The young woman again giggled. “I must be a very lucky woman.” She quipped. “To have such a handsome man falling at my feet and catering to my whims.”
“Careful, darling.” He cooed. “You know I tend to have a rebellious streak.” He kissed her deeply, before releasing her and heading towards the door. He stopped however and turned to look at her. “You think I’m handsome?” he asked, that boyish grin on his face.
“I think I’ll join Carth up in the cockpit.” She replied, walking past him and out into the corridor.
“But you didn’t answer my question.” He complained, walking beside her.
“No, I didn’t, did I?” she retorted. “But I agree with you.”
Again, he grinned at her. “You agree that I’m handsome?”
“I agree that you have a rebellious streak.” She said, leaving him standing in the main hold.
The young woman walked into the cockpit, smiling at Carth as she sat down and made their coordinates to Coruscant. “Destination’s all set.” The pilot replied, starting up the Ebon Hawk and maneuvering it off the sandy beaches of the beautiful, but unknown world. Looking at his co-pilot, he asked, “Are you ready for this?”
Bastila sighed. “I’m not sure.” She whispered. “I’d rather not have to do this, but the council, of course, would want to know our exact accounts of what has happened up until this point.”
“That means telling them about you and Revan.”
“I know.” She gulped, leaning back in her chair. “And there’s no way to hide it either.”
“If you ask me, and I know you haven’t,” he replied. “I say you tell the council you don’t care what they think.”
“Hear me out.” He interrupted. “I know before all this, you lived and breathed the Jedi Code, but love happens without warning, Bastila. And despite what your damn council thinks, love is the best kind of thing anyone can ever have.” He sighed, turning away from her.
“Being in love is like nothing you’ve ever experienced before. It has ups and downs, good and bad, but you shouldn”t just throw it away, especially when you’ve got something that no one has ever experienced before. Now, maybe…maybe this is just a result of that bond you share. But what if it isn’t? What if this is something real, something you may not find ever again?”
Bastila went to say something, but stopped, the words lost on her tongue. She had convinced herself somewhat, and had certainly tried to convince Revan, that the feelings between them were indeed a result of their bond, a sharing of minds, of feelings, of emotions…but she could now admit, she couldn’t keep up the pretense any more.
She didn’t know when it had started, but the fear of seeing Revan that first time on Taris had disappeared and was replaced with respect, then like, then love and she couldn’t deny it any longer. She had told him she loved him and meant it.
The trip to Coruscant had been quiet, as the young Jedi knight thought about what Carth had said. He had plenty experience in having loved and been loved…and then losing it before his eyes.
And wasn’t that the never spoken, but always hinted at line in the Jedi Code? There is no love, there is loss. She could see it being in the code and quite frankly, she was surprised it wasn’t. That brought up another problem or rather the same problem.
How could she say that it was Revan’s love that had saved her from the dark side?
She wanted to be strong, like Revan, but she knew she wouldn’t be able to. She didn’t want to admit it, but she did feel a bit…betrayed at the masters. Her words to Revan on the Rakatan Temple came flooding back to her.
How the Jedi had used them, used her for her Battle Meditation, had used her act of saving Revan’s life in order to access his memories. She had never thought the masters wrong in any decision and now she wondered if maybe even their choices during the Mandalorian War were in the right.
Bastila shook her head, clearing her mind. She had to be prepared for standing in front of the council or…what was left of the council. The reality that she probably wouldn’t be seeing those familiar faces from the council on Dantooine left her feeling cold.
The enclave was gone, destroyed by Malak and his fleet. Did anyone other than Master Vandar survive the destruction? Was her own master, Vrook Lamar, able to flee the bombardment? Another wave of unease settled over her. She had never been in front of the High Council before.
A hand on her shoulder startled her from her musings and looking up, she found Revan standing next to her, smiling down at her. She gave him a weak grin, before turning back to viewing the stars out of the front window. She felt his hand give squeeze on her shoulder and she found herself reaching up and entwining their fingers.
She felt the beginnings of a calmness settle over her, knowing it was Revan’s doing. She let out a small breath, sending her thanks and gratitude to him through the link. They stayed that way until they landed on Coruscant’s landing pad.
Arriving on Coruscant was interesting and exciting for everyone on the Hawk. Most had never been on Coruscant; for the resident Jedis on board, they hadn’t been there in quite some time.
The world of Coruscant rivaled that of Taris; there were tall skyscrapers and buildings everywhere, speeders raced around in the sky, people milling to and fro. The landing port on Coruscant seemed quite busy and it made sense when a flash went off in front of them.
“I can’t believe it!” cried a voice. A young man jumped up to the group, extending his hand to Revan. “This is such a great honor! I can’t believe you’ve decided to come to the world of Coruscant. Have you been summoned to the great Jedi High Council? How do you feel about the fall of the Sith? Is it true you killed your former friend and lord of the Sith, Darth Malak? Did you make him suffer for all the…”
“Hold it!” Revan exclaimed. “First, who the hell are you? Second, how do you know who we are? And three, what the hell are you talking about?”
The young man continued to fire off questions, as though he never heard what Revan had asked. It wasn’t until Candeous shoved his blaster in the man’s face that he shut up.
“In case you didn’t know,” Canderous smirked. “This is a Mandalorian ripper. This gun can clear your head off and send it to the other side of the planet. Now shut up.”
The young man nodded quickly and quietly. “Now that my mandalorian friend has…garnered your attention,” Revan began. “Perhaps you can answer my previous questions.”
The young man nodded again. “Zatch Croft, Republic News.” He sputtered. “I just arrived in that shuttle over there to try and get a comment from the High Jedi Council, when I saw you leaving your ship. So I decided…”
“You’d get an interview from us instead.” Bastila finished.
Zatch nodded. “So…can I get a comment from the saviors of the galaxy?”
“Yeah,” Canderous huffed. “Space off.”
“Don’t use that.” Revan said, hastily, giving the mandalorian a look. “Look, just say we’re gald the galaxy is safe, we did our part, but with help from loyal and determined Republic soldiers. End quote.”
“Wow,” Zatch gushed. “Thanks a lot, Master Jedi! This’ll be on the front page for sure!” He hurried off to unload his story to his superiors.
Jolee huffed. “With displays like that, I can easily find my way back to Kashyyyk.” He grumbled. “An old man can’t take those kinds of excitement.”
“Ah, come on, Jolee.” Revan replied, a grin on his face. “You can finally polish up the old chrome dome there.” He gave the elderly man’s head an affectionate rub, causing the man to snort in amusement.
“Besides,” he continued, casting a glance at the ladies in the group. “Women love a man with a bald head.” He waggled his eyebrows, causing Mission to giggle, Juhani to cover a smile, and Bastila to roll her eyes.
“I think you letting this celebrity get to you.” Carth chuckled.
“Hey, don’t worry,” he said. “I don’t forget my friends. When the women come fawning over me, I’ll share.”
“I’ll hold you to that.” Jolee muttered.
“If you’re quite finished…” Bastila replied, sending Revan a look, that was neither anger nor amusement. The group chuckled, heading into the streets of Coruscant. Mission looked up at the sights and sounds of the planet, never being off of Taris from the time she was five and certainly not seeing anything like this, even on their latest adventures; the young Twi”lek couldn’t help but be star struck.
Her wookiee companion though, didn’t really enjoy the fast paced bustle of the Jedi world. He growled his compliant, causing Revan to pat him on his furry arm.
“I know, big guy,” he whispered. “Hopefully, it’s only for a little while. Then we can leave and…” He trailed off, a sudden realization coming to him. He looked around at the group, his friends, and realized their time together was virtually over.
He and the other Jedi would no doubt be called on to do some sort of rebuilding of the Order, but the others…what would they do?
No doubt Carth would continue searching for his son, though hopefully with the new exposure, it would be an easier task than it had been; Canderous would probably go back to being a bounty hunter with pride and honor; Zaalbar would go back to Kashyyyk to rule over his people; Mission would…well, Mission would probably hang with Big Z. That’s what she had always done.
The knight shook his head, stopping in his tracks. He wouldn’t see any of them again, would he? He had spent the better part of a year getting to know these people, making friends with these people, and he wasn’t going to see them again. That brought a heavy weight upon his heart.
“Revan?” asked Bastila, sensing his sadness and despair.
“What’s the hold up?” Jolee asked, looking at Revan in some concern.
Revan looked at them, looked at them all, a nagging thought in the back of his mind. “If I went on another trip, another adventure, you guys would come with me, right?” he asked.
“Planning another trip so soon, Revan?” Canderous asked, midst a chuckle. “Dust hasn’t even settled on this one and he wants to go off again.”
“Heck yeah, we’d be with you!” Mission exclaimed. “You can’t get rid of us that easily!”
“Is something wrong, Revan?” Juhani asked. “Something that makes you ask this?”
Again, he shook his head. “No,” he stuttered. “I was…I was just asking.” He grinned, before poking the teenager in the stomach. “I like having you around, is all. No biggie.” Revan continued on their journey, the others catching up to him.
Carth slung an arm over the young man’s shoulders. “I think you’ve been hanging out with Jolee far too long.” He joked. “A good Telosian whiskey should knock that right out.”
“Shows what you know, flyboy,” Jolee huffed. “I know a thing or two about whiskey and the Telosian kind, bah! Now, there was this one time that I smuggled in the best tasting whiskey around. I had just landed my ship in a dark looking docking bay…”