A Long Time Ago, In a Galaxy Far, Far Away...
In three hours, the Death Star would arrive and the Battle of Yavin would begin. All through the old temple base, Rebel pilots were rushing to their stations. Luke however was just waiting. Sitting near his X-Wing and trying to make sense of the past few days. It was barely a week ago that he had been just another kid on a backwater world. Now he was a pivotal member of a movement to liberate the galaxy.
He was so lost in his thoughts that he almost didn’t notice the tall gaunt woman pushing a food cart. “Soup?” She asked with a polite smile, “Keeps your strength up.” He had seen her before during the briefing. She had arrived with some of the Mon Calamari soldiers.
Luke shrugged, “Sure.”
The old woman, who was a from a species Luke had never seen before, limped over to the boy’s side and settled into the chair beside him. “The soup is called Nissum, an old Mon Calamari recipe.”
As soon as the liquid hit his lips, Luke started to cough and sputter, “It’s very strong!” He said between heavy coughs.
“Yes, it’s quite terrible.” laughed the old woman, “The Mon Calamari have a very weak sense of taste so all of their food is very spicy. I keep begging the Mon Calamari to let me make them something else but they insist I make it before every battle.”
“I guess they like the taste of home.”
She laughed and Luke heard a strange tinge of fearlessness in her voice, ““I suppose that’s true. It’s actually Admiral Ackbar’s favorite, I make it for him all the time.”
Luke looked at her with pure admiration, “You know Gial Ackbar?”
The Old Woman straightened up with pride and pointed one of her bony fingers towards her skinny chest. “My dear boy, I’ll have you know I’m a celebrity among the Rebellion.”
“I am the best cook in all of Rebellion space.”
The unusual pair shared another laugh until an uneasy silence settled over them and Luke could tell there was a something the old woman wanted to ask him. When she finally spoke, her voice was heavy and choked with emotion. “I am told your name is Skywalker.”
“Is it true you were Obi-Wan Kenobi’s last student.”
“And you...were there when he died?”
Luke sighed and nodded he could tell from the look on the Old Woman’s face that this was very painful for her, “How did it happen?” She asked.
“Darth Vader killed him and then Ben’s body...seemed to just disappear.” It hurt to say that, hurt to admit that greatest Jedi in the history of the Republic was finally gone forever. He had expected to see the same conflicted pain in his soul reflected on the Old Woman’s face but for some reason, this knowledge seemed to bring her a sense of peace. “Oh thank the Force.” She whispered, “Obi-Wan is still alive.”
“No, he disappeared-”
“He left the physical world.” She said firmly, “He became one with the Force, he’s immortal now. ” His jaw dropped open, opening and closing as Luke tried to understand the full magnitude of her words. She laughed at him and patted him on the shoulder.“By the spirits, boy, I forget that you are barely a padawan.”
He blinked. “Padawan?”
“A student. An apprentice in the Force.” She whispered, “One who has much to learn.”
Luke sighed and shook his head, “I doubt I will be learning much anymore, there are no more Jedi left to teach me.”
“Obi-Wan will teach you,” She whispered, “When he is ready.”
“I don’t understand what you-”
Instead of answering, the Old Woman merely rose to her feet and began to walk away, “You remind me of your father.” She said simply.
“You knew my father?”
“Yes.” And with that, she was gone.
Alone in her quarters, Asajj Ventress did something she hadn’t done in years: she began to meditate. This wasn’t the mental torture of Sith Meditation, this was a technique she had used from before her time with Dooku, long before her fall to the Dark Side. It was a simple breathing exercise taught to her by her first master, the Jedi Ky Narec. It was a way to channel positive energy and connect her mind to the Force and for years after Ky’s death she had seen no point in using it. In those years her life had been fueled with anger and pain so there was never a reason for “cleansing”.
But now she knew she had to use it, even just one last time. “Kenobi.” She whispered.
And suddenly he was there, she could feel him in the room with her. Her oldest foe. Her best friend. The man who she had once...cared for? Loved? Hated? No. There was no label for it. Instead she just decided to enjoy having him back one last time.
He spoke to her as if from across a vast distance but she heard his voice as clear as day. “Asajj...be at peace.”
She began to cry.