Join Date: May 2002
Location: Lounging around LucasForums.
Note: And the return of episodic postage!
“Master Averre, we’re closing in on Secerros,” stated Master Vien to Jayde in a bold, deep tone. “How are Strider and Cylia holding out?” he asked.
“Thanks for the heads up,” said Master Averre. “They just reported in a few minutes ago. They’ve already landed ahead of us as civilians and managed to get swept up within the resistance group. They’re really eager for members it appears,” replied Jayde.
“Good to hear it went off without a hitch,” replied Vien. He sat back as their ship was guided into the hangar.
* * * * * * *
Strider and Cylia stood amongst a group of many other new recruits into the anti-Republic resistance group. There was a speech going on about the purpose of the resistance group. It took place in wide open underground area, cement walls surrounding them on all sides, gratings along the top giving hint to the sunlight and lives of ordinary people above. There was a single entrance and two exits from the room – a set of double steel blast doors to the left of everyone, and a steel security door directly behind the speaker.
“We must stop the Republic from spreading to our beloved planet. They know not what the greater good is for Secerros! They will seize our exports for themselves to put towards debts they can never hope to repay, dominate our markets and import to us little in return! The Republic is evil, and we must fight. We have acquired an ally, and shortly hereafter, you will soon meet a third party who has graciously agreed to assist us in our prevention of the Republic occupation of Secerros,” the orator shouted to the group, which for the most part responded in cheers from the young, ignorant supporters. Ignorance was truly bliss when they knew not the much worse fate that lay in store for them by their “third party supporters.”
“A third party…?” Cylia asked quietly to Strider.
“I’ve already got one or two ideas,” Strider quickly replied in a hushed voice. “Either freelance mercenaries, or Sith. I’m leaning to the latter,” he finished.
Cylia looked at Strider, “What if you’re right? Can we really pass off with our Force sensitivity?” she asked him worriedly. Her hazel eyes stared directly at his – something Strider had to fight hard for the moment not to look directly back at, for his eyes would not be able to pull away once he did.
“We may just have to play along for a few days…with the Sith teachings I mean, just don’t let the aggressive nature of the Sith get to your head,” Strider advised in response, keeping his attention focused on the orator before the group, which received a nod from Cylia in return, understanding that there would be time for further questions and planning later – they must blend in for now.
Within moments after the speech’s end, the young group was then led through the double steel blast doors, opened by a pair of guards employed by the resistance movement, and were shuffled into a systematic series of long, branching hallways filled with doors. As the recruits slowly filled the halls, doors at the end of the branching hallways swung open, and out marched soldiers donned in familiar chrome armor and black masks.
Cylia gasped. “Sith Soldiers…” muttered Strider.
The Sith stopped next to the doorways of each room along the side.
“These will be your quarters,” spoke the orator once more, his face now appearing on screens placed conveniently along the walls or hallway ends. “You may bunk with up to one other person of any gender. These Sith are your temporary room guards. They will lead you in and out of this hallway to resistance meetings, and will call you from your rooms for your assigned activities, whether it is rallies, meetings, or even meal time in the mess halls here in these underground facilities. Get some rest, later this evening we are going to show you exactly how we plan to resist the Republic’s advances into our country. I am Jonath Duran, and I formally welcome you all to the Secerran Resistance,” the orator finished.
With that, the many people began randomly picking partners, whether they were friends, siblings, or even just mutually interested in one another, and began taking rooms as well. Strider and Cylia had already decided that they would bunk with one another, simply so they could easily report back to each other after mingling with others. They reserved one of the empty residence rooms and dropped their bags, meeting the ground with slight thuds. The corresponding Sith Soldier walked in and took the two Jedi’s names. They both gave him fictitious names for their own safety as Jedi – Craig and Cynthia – and after he left, they both sat down on the two different beds. Cylia was quiet, sitting with her hands in her lap. Her eyes were distant, her mind wandering. She was thinking about something, Strider knew, most likely the mission, that’s all she ever thought about when they were on one, never wanting to deviate from a reasonable course of action if she didn’t have to.
Strider took some time to stand and look around the room for a moment, before his eyes were suddenly involuntarily drawn to Cylia, almost as if there seemed to be a magnetic pull towards her, his gaze fixated on his fellow Jedi for the moment. They were close friends, and more often than not they were left alone to deal with one end of a mission rather than working cooperatively with their masters on it. Although he was well used to this occurrence by now, he still wasn’t quite sure why it happened so often.
“Surely it cannot be coincidence, it happens too often…it must be a working of the Force…but why us? Is there some sort of Force bond between us…?” he thought, an almost half-hopeful tone to the thought, though not realizing his own desire.
Cylia began to be preoccupied with looking over her personal effects, but was starting to feel Strider’s gaze on her. She couldn’t help but be curious as to why he was looking at or, or even if he wasn’t, in her general direction for such an extended period of time.
“What’s he thinking…? He’s always so…different with me, than when he’s around the Masters. Always stubborn, always trying to prove something, wild and untamed. Why is he so docile around me, so willing and modest? Which is his true nature?” she asked herself in her thoughts, then suddenly realizing that, unusually, her thoughts just now were completely devoted to that of Strider. She blinked in surprise, and made an effort to bring her thoughts back on track.
“The mission…yes, Secerros…the resistance. Okay, back on track. We have to blend in with the Sith for now if questioned about Force Sensitivity, until then, act as a citizen…Apparently Jonath Duran is the Secerran Resistance leader – He’ll be a primary target to take down later – but what about the leader of the Sith party? Surely he will reveal himself later…I wonder if Strider’s taken any of this into consideration?” pondered Cylia, not realizing that the end of her thought was trailing back into focus on Strider.
Strider blinked, and much to his surprise, heard a majority of her thoughts within his own mind, a faint whisper, though definitely her voice. His attention to her grew, his occasionally diverting eyes now gazing with a far greater interest in her, although not realizing his odd behavior. Could there possibly be a bond between them by now, after so many occasions of cooperation?
Cylia finally turned, deciding she was getting a little disconcerted with his excess attention, her eyes turning to look directly at his blue ones, which at that point were almost gazing at her penetratingly, “You’ve been looking an awful long time Strider – is there something on your mind and you just haven’t figured out how to say it yet?” she asked, wanting to know what must be floating in his head that’s causing such a fixated stare at her.
Strider’s face flushed red almost immediately, he began stammering, trying to find words to say. He finally looked away, managing to catch his tongue finally and began to speak, “I…was concerned… You seemed to be in deep thought, I was starting to wonder what was on your mind,” Strider blurted insincerely. He was caught off guard by this, hoping she wouldn’t have noticed his excess attention to her all of a sudden. It was a mystery to him too, he couldn’t figure out why he had such an affinity for her – but she was right. He was more “docile” and calm…unless they were being attacked, then he was just as rash as ever, focusing on eliminating the threat at hand.
Cylia only looked at him with a raised eyebrow. He could tell she did not buy his story, and decided it would be smart now to explain before upsetting his partner. “Okay…” he breathed, backing up a little and running a hand through his messy black hair. “I heard your thoughts in my head Cylia…I mean, I just started hearing you in my head…and it caught my curiosity and attention. I apologize, I did not realize how intently I must have been looking at you,” he explained, trying to make his explanation sound as good as he could. He had even felt her emotions while listening to her thoughts, but did not delve that far into his description of what he experienced.
“Sounds like we’ve created a Force Bond,” Cylia said in a far more optimistic tone than Strider expected. “Well it’s about time a bond formed. With how often we’re stuck working together it’s high time we had a way to benefit each other through our own abilities,” Cylia said, smiling a little as she said it.
Strider managed a half-smile upon hearing her optimistic response. That went better than I thought, Strider thought in the way back of his head, where Cylia would most likely be unable to sense it considering the bond seemed to be only in its earliest stages. “Great…so now I’m subject to you invading my thoughts, and you reprimanding me without me even having to be there in person, oh how I am looking forward to this,” Strider said sarcastically to her with a grin.
Short, yes, I realize this, open ended, yes, I also realize this. This is all I have ready for viewing right now, and I'm nowhere near done with the chapter (I just got back into writing it a week ago. I'm way overdo.) Anyway as always please leave some feedback, I'm excited to know what others think so far. I'm slowly evolving my writing style with this story as I'm doing a joint writing project in which I'm slowly cranking out the best I can, and the more often I do it, the better I'm getting, so I'm trying to now add the word play that I use there, here, to enhance my writing. More of that will come into play later, but enjoy the first part out of god knows how many of the next chapter!