Chapter 2: The Pain Remains
I stirred from my sleep to see the same female Twi'lek who allowed me on board her ship.
"I thought you would be hungry...you've been such a help to our business," she said.
She handed a tray of food to me. I smiled and graciously accepted it.
"Your business is a just cause...but it's going to be dangerous to use this model of ship until Order 66 is over," I said.
"I know; we've been saving towards getting a smaller vessel because we're shrinking it down to avoid too much attention," she replied.
I nodded slowly.
"A wise move," I said.
"May I ask your name?" she asked.
"Raizo Raynar," I replied.
"My name is Akibvojo, the man you saw before is my brother Huhsaden," she said.
"Pleasure to meet you,"
I took a large gulp of the drink and let out a satisfied sigh.
"You sure know how to cook," I said.
"I've had a lot of practice," she replied with a smile.
I looked around for a moment and scratched my head.
"Where's your brother?" I asked.
"He's sleeping upstairs and there's no one down here but the droids tending to the cargo," she explained.
"What made you decide to come down here to find me?" I asked.
"I was curious...I sensed the Dark Side within you but at the same time, you don't seem even remotely corrupted by it," she explained.
I shook my head.
"It's a very long story...but let's just say that I'm not interested in being a part of this war," I said.
"What made you decide to become neutral?" she asked.
My eyes narrowed as the memories of my days at the Sith Academy came rushing back to me.
"Will you keep a secret?" I asked.
She nodded before sitting down in front of me.
"Well...it went like this,"
I managed to parry the swing my opponent relentlessly launched at me before backing away. I was exhausted; my master decided to put me through some intense training this morning which wore out my legs and made my arms feel like jelly. She then decided to put me against a fresh apprentice...and it was a struggle to say the least to keep up with him.
"You're stronger than this Raizo! Now prove it to me!"
I took my stance, my training saber poised behind my back as my opponent came at me again. I parried his attack and managed to land a kick to his stomach. While he was disoriented, I focused Force energy into my hand and managed to shove him back into the wall. I wasn't however prepared for just how much it would exhaust me. I collapsed to my knees and looked to see that he already recovered and was coming at me. I tried to move, but my legs refused to respond. I barely managed to block the next blow and he took advantage of my position by kicking me hard in the chest, sending me sliding across the floor.
I looked at my master, her eyes now thoroughly disappointed in my performance. Knowing that if I was to stand a chance at survival, I forced myself to my feet, though my legs were wobbly. I focused as best I could as I dashed towards my enemy. He was barely able to block my relentless assault and once I saw an opening, I punched him with my free hand and in the same swinging motion, brought my saber around to strike him hard in the chest. He fell to the ground, unable to get up. I panted heavily, dropping my saber as I began to feel the pain I tried to suppress now come at me in full force.
I heard her clapping.
"Now that's more like it my apprentice...you've passed your trial," she said.
I couldn't believe that I did it; I completed the final trial to becoming Darth Yashika's personal apprentice. She approached me and held a hand out.
"You've done well today Raizo and you will be rewarded later this evening," she whispered.
I took her hand and she helped me to my feet.
"Your new quarters are opposite to mine, recover from your fatigue and we will talk later," she instructed.
I nodded slowly before taking my leave.
"You were a Sith?!" she exclaimed.
"Not anymore...the story continues but I think that's enough for a day," I replied.
She shook her head.
"You don't seem ruthless or evil like they usually are...I find it difficult to believe that you actually trained under them," she said.
"Then maybe this will convince you otherwise,"
I took out my lightsaber and ignited it, showing her the signature red of the Sith.
"I constructed this lightsaber myself," I said.
She seemed quite astonished at the sight of the weapon and I quickly sheathed it and replaced it in my jacket.
"It'll be a few hours until we arrive at Alderaan...so you can take a nap," she said.
"Thank you for your help," I said.
She smiled at me and nodded before rising to her feet. She began to walk away but she turned back to face me.
"You're not a horrible person Raizo...no one simply breaks away from the allure of the Dark Side of The Force...I've heard so many stories about how it's caused so many Jedi to fall into darkness but you? You've come out unscathed," she said.
I shook my head.
"You don't know anything about me but I appreciate the sentiment," I replied.
She smiled at me.
"I'll come back when we're nearly there," she said.
She disappeared up the stairs. I shook my head and sighed deeply.
"If she knew what I did...there's no way she'd think I'm not like one of those ruthless murderers,"