Chapter One: Ghosts of the Past
The Nature Boy Presents
A Long Time Ago in a Galaxy Far, Far Away...Star Wars
Trials of the Empire
It’s been three years since the destruction of the Death Star over Yavin IV. Hunted by the Empire and it’s agents, Darth Vader, former Jedi Master turned Sith Apprentice Nejaa Halcyon, and the Emperor’s Hand Mara Jade, the Rebellion settled on the ice planet of Hoth. While they established their secret base, Luke Skywalker, Leia Naberrie and Joyce Solo, children of the Skywalker siblings, have begun their training in the Jedi arts.
Meanwhile on Earth, the Jedi Council has stepped up their training of the Padawans, along with strengthening their ties to the Watchers Council, in preparation for their return across the barrier. Padawan Dawn Summers nears the end of her training and prepares to enter the Trials, while her boyfriend Zett Jukassa faces trials of his own.
Anakin Skywalker, meanwhile, has taken Willow Rosenberg, once the Dark Lady Traya, as his apprentice in an effort to train her in the Jedi arts- skills Willow hopes to use to save her daughter, Mara Jade. But her resolve against the Dark Side will be tested with a reunion with her family and her placement with a new enemy.
As the Rebel Alliance are relentlessly pursued by the Empire, the Skywalker children will face their own trials- for Luke, the knowledge of what his father did under the control of Darth Traya; for Leia, the loss of her one true love; and for Joyce, the Mandalorian battles the Dark Side and her own demons as she hunts down the man who murdered her father and stole her childhood- the man who took her as his own daughter, Boba Fett
And all the while, Darth Vader plots to finally bring a Skywalker over to the Dark Side, and sets his sights on an old enemy- Jedi Master Buffy Skywalker-Summers. Can Buffy resist the pull of the Dark Side going up against the one man who always managed to bring out her darkest emotions, even when he was a Jedi?Disclaimer: Star Wars and its characters are owned by George Lucas and Lucas Films. Buffy the Vampire Slayer and its characters are owned by Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. I own neither.
Buffy Skywalker; Jedi Master, Senior Slayer (female human)
Willow Rosenberg-Naberrie; Force-Sensitive Witch (female human)
Anakin Skywalker; Jedi Master (human male)
Padmé Skywalker (female human)
Obi-Wan Kenobi; Jedi Master (human male)
Aayla Secura; Jedi Master (female Twi’lek)
Bol Chatak; Jedi Master (male Zabrak)
Roan Shryne; Jedi Master (human male)
Ydra Kilwallen; Jedi Master (female Mirialan)
Teryl Sibwarra; Jedi Master (Female Kuat)
Zett Jukassa; Jedi Knight (human male)
Serra Keto; Jedi Knight (human female)
Olee Starstone; Jedi Padawan (female human)
Dawn Summers; Jedi Padawan (female human)
Luke Skywalker; Jedi Apprentice (male human)
Leia Naberrie; Jedi Apprentice (female human)
Han Solo; Captain, Millennium Falcon (human male)
Chewbacca; co-pilot, Millennium Falcon (male Wookie)
Joyce Solo; Mandalorian Jedi Apprentice (female human)
Boba Fett; Mandalorian Bounty Hunter (human male)
Qui-Gon Jin; Apparition (male human)
Darth Vader (Jorus C’baoth); Sith Lord (male human)
Nejaa Halcyon; Master Hand (human male)
Mara Jade; Emperor’s Hand (female human)
Wedge Antilles; Rebel Pilot (male human)
Lord Nigel Ambrose-Bellairs; Head, Watcher’s Council (male human)
Xander Harris; Wather’s Council Represenative (male human)
Rupert Giles; Senior Watcher (male human)
Faith Lehane; Senior Slayer (female human)
Wesley Whyndam-Pryce; Watcher (male human)
Winefred Burkle; Council Tech Specialist (female human)
Spike; Council Operative (male vampire)
Angel; Council Operative (male vampire)
It was a weary Joyce Solo that made her way through the ice caverns of he Rebel base on Hoth. Three hours of patrol around the system in the Prometheus was a lot, even for someone who had the enhanced stamina of both a Jedi and a Slayer. And three hours is a long time to think, and as usual her mind had wandered to the holo she had received from Talon Karrde and what it meant.
Boba Fett had killed her father.
Boba Fett, the one who had taken her under his wing. The one who had introduced her to the Mandalorian culture.
The one who had taken her as a daughter.
The one who she had to kill.
Vengeance was an ugly word and one that the Jedi frowned upon. A Jedi doesn’t take vengeance, her mother had said. A Jedi strives for justice.
She sighed as she entered her private quarters. Wearily she pulled off her helmet, then the rest of her armor. Placing it net to her bed, she quickly shed the rest of her clothes in preparation fro a well-deserved shower. As she walked past her dresser, she stopped for a moment and looked to the small holoprojectors sitting there. After a moments hesitation she switched it on and the blue image flared to life, showing the now-familiar sight of her mother and father with Han and her. She was nestled safely in her father’s arms with a small smile on her face.
“Ni su'cuyi, gar kyr'adyc, ni partayli, gar darasuum Jacen Solo,” she said quietly, looking sadly at the shimmering image of her father. So intent was she on the image that she didn’t hear the door to her quarters open, or the footsteps approach her from behind. It wasn’t until strong arms wrapped around her waist that she realized she wasn’t alone.
“How was patrol?” the man asked as Joyce leaned lovingly back into the embrace. She titled her head back and kissed him softly.
“Three hours alone in a small, cramped space is too much, Wedge,” she said. “I wish you could have flown second seat with me.”
“I wanted to, but they needed me here, working on the speeders.” He kissed her shoulder softly. “Plus, I’m not sure Han would approve.”
Joyce snorted softly. “There’s probably a lot about this he wouldn’t approve, husband.”
After Yavin IV, Joyce and Wedge became nearly inseparable, much to Han’s chagrin. After nearly two years together the couple had finally realized how much they loved each other. On the night Wedge had proposed, Joyce had performed the Mandalorian ceremony that bound the two in marriage. Both had decided to keep it secret, lest her brother freak out. Of course, they both refused to think about how he’d react when they finally told him.
Or how her mother would react, for that matter.
“So, tell me what else is bothering you,” Wedge said softly, taking notice in her stiffened shoulders. “Baby, I wish you would talk to me.”
“There’s nothing to say.”
Wedge sighed. “It’s this thing with Fett, isn’t it? You’ve been hunting him for three years, Joyce!” he exclaimed as she stalked away from him. “This obsession of your can’t be healthy!”
“He killed my father!” she exclaimed. “He deserves to die!”
“He deserves justice, Joyce.” He moved back to her and gently took her by the shoulders. “Vengeance won’t bring your father back. And I don’t want to loose you.”
“I can take care of a bounty hunter on my own, Wedge.”
“That’s not what I’m talking about, and you know it,” he shot back. “You’re a Jedi—”
“The point is, I’ve heard what happens to them when they let vengeance take over,” he argued. “I don’t want that to happen to you.”
Joyce sighed. “It won’t. I promise you, it won’t. I just— ” she was cut off by the sounds of arguing outside her door.“Han!”
“Yes, Your Highness?”
“I thought you had decided to stay.”
“That bounty hunter we ran into on Ord Mantell changed my mind.”
“But we still need you,” she said.
“We need?” he asked.
“What about you need?”
“Me? I don’t know what you mean.”
“No, you probably don’t.”
“And what precisely am I supposed to know?”
“You want me to stay because of the way you feel about me.”
“Well, yes, you’ve been a great help to us. You’re a natural leader—”
“No, Your Worship. That’s not it.”
“You’re imagining things.”
“Am I? I think you were afraid I was going to leave you without a goodbye kiss?”
“I’d just as soon kiss a Wookiee.”
“I can arrange that. He could use a good kiss!”
The couple looked at each other, then broke out laughing. “Those two just need to have sex and get it over with,” Joyce finally managed. “My brother is an idiot.”
“Stubborn, too,” Wedge put in. “Kinda like his sister.”
Joyce smiled at her husband. “Come on, I still need that shower,” she said, sauntering away from him towards the ‘fresher. “You can do my back.”
Wedge watched as his very naked wife walked into the fresher and sighed. He knew she was deflecting his concerns, just as she always did. And it worried him that she would take off one night and not come back- or worse, come back like Vader. He comforted himself in the knowledge that he wouldn’t allow her to slip that far and neither would her family.
“You coming, flyboy? Or am I doing this all alone tonight.?” Joyce’s voice called out from the ‘fresher. Smiling to himself, he started to remove his flight suite and head towards the fresher, stopping only long enough to turn off their com receivers.
Dawn moved quietly through the ruined building, stepping carefully among the rubble. Though the surrounding seemed vaguely familiar, the young Padawan had no idea where she was, nor what she was supposed to be doing, and the feeling was leaving her a little put out with her Master and sister Buffy.
“‘Trust me’, she says. ‘All part of your training’, she says. ‘Consider it a part of your trials’, she says,” she muttered to herself. “Why must all Jedi be such vague, Power-That-Be type beings? Just give me a straight answer, for the love of god ...” She ducked under a fallen beam and finally spotted the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. She paused for a moment to bend down and pick up a broken length of wood before continuing down the hall. Buffy had insisted that she come in here unarmed, but with all of the Vampire activity around Leeds she wasn’t about to risk it, no matter how well protected Buffy said Tara had made this place. As she neared the end of the tunnel she let out a sigh of relief, even as she felt the anticipation build. She knew whatever test Buffy had set up would be at the end of the tunnel- now she just had to pass it.
“No problem,” she said to herself. “Buffy can’t throw anything at me that I can’t pa—” Her breath caught as she finally saw her surroundings, a familiar sight that had haunted many a nightmare over the past year. She was in the same burned out opera house that her team had been decimated in, the same theater that her best friend had been savagely murdered by the vampire Tomlisov
And standing on the ruined stage across from Dawn was the bloodied form of Vi.
“Hello, killer,” she spat at the speechless Padawan.
Outside the theater, Buffy sat in silence, reaching out with her senses to try and determine how her apprentice was doing. She gritted her teeth when she felt her sister’s emotions suddenly reach a fever pitch.
“Hello, cutie,” a voice said from the shadows behind the Jedi. Buffy smiled slightly.
“Evening, Spike. Fancy running into you here.”
“Yeah, well, the local pub was having a Clash marathon. Thought I’d check it out,” the blonde vampire replied, sitting down next to Buffy. “What’s going on in there?”
“I’m testing Dawn.”
“By making her come back here?” Spike shook his head. “Not your best idea, Buffy.”
“It’s almost time for her to face her Trials, Spike.”
Buffy sighed. “When a Jedi faces their Trials, it’s more than just a test of strength or skill in the Force,” Buffy explained. “One of the biggest parts of the Trials is the Jedi’s ability to withstand the temptation of the Dark Side. Obi-Wan nearly gave in on Naboo, but pulled himself together and helped me defeat Maul. I’ve been tempted several times, but always managed to resist. And ” She sighed. “Well,Anakin he’s one of the very lucky few to come back from being immersed in it, albeit against his will.”
“So what’s that got to do with the Nibblet?”
“Well, Dawn’s also tasted the Dark Side- in this very building, nonetheless. And the events that happened here have haunted her, despite how far she’s come. She needs to face it, come to terms with it, and put it behind her if she has any hope of becoming a full Jedi.”
“So, what? You brought her back here for closure?” Spike asked. Buffy tilted her head, then nodded.
“In a way. This place is ripe with the Dark Side. Tonight, Dawn will face it.” She sighed. “I just hope she’s strong enough.”
“What are you?” Dawn demanded, staring at horror at the bloody apparition in front of her. The ghoul’s face took on a shocked expression.
“You mean, you don’t recognize me? Me, your supposed best friend? Your Slayer? You remember, the Slayer you got killed?”
“You are NOT Vi! Vi’s dead!”
“Yeah, you saw to that,” Vi spat. “My friend, my Watcher- who couldn’t do her freaking job! Too busy making googly eye’s at the Jedi to do you job and watch my back!”
“That wasn’t what happened!” Dawn shot back. “We made mistakes! We all made mistakes!”
“Oh, sure! Blame it on me, the one who got a sword through her heart!” Vi scoffed. “Face it, D, you just weren’t very good at your job. Hell, if you hadn’t had so many connections, you never would have been a Watcher.”
“Shut up,” Dawn growled, any pretense of composure finally fading away.
“You were a terrible Watcher. If you’d been any good, don’t you think you’d have gotten your sister back before she hit menopause?”
“If you’d been any good, I’d still be there. Face it, Dawn, Tomlisov may have stabbed me, but you were the one to kill me. Just like you’ll kill your next Slayer- or Jedi, whichever comes ”first
“Shut up. Shut up! SHUT UP!” Dawn shouted, finally snapping and calling on the Force to rip up the remains of the stage and whip it at the form of her former friend that disappeared. With a scream born of rage and pain Dawn let loose, the whirlwind of energy that she had gathered around herself ripping at the interior of the old opera house.
Outside the building, the Slayer and the Vampire turned towards the building as several explosions seemed to rock the building, sending debris flying everywhere. Spike instinctively dropped to the ground, but Buffy rose and stood her ground, using the Force to shield her from the debris. As things settled down Spike picked up his head and stared at the remains of the opera house.
“What in the bloody hell was that?!” he exclaimed, climbing to his feet and dusting his black leather coat off. “Was that a part of your test?”
“Not exactly.” Buffy sighed. “That was Dawn.”
Spike looked at the Slayer closely. “And I take it from your doom and gloom expression that she didn’t pass?” Buffy shook her head.
“No, she didn’t.” She sighed again. “Something’s coming, Spike. Something big. And Dawn NEEDS to be ready. We all need to be ready.” She looked on as Dawn made her way out of the rubble towards them. She was a mess, her black shirt and pants were torn and covered with dust and blood, her short hair almost white from the collapsed plaster. But what worried Buffy the most was the look in her sisters eyes, a look she hadn’t often seen since she had first came back from the disastrous patrol. It was a look of horror tinged with defeat, and maybe just a bit of fear. And Buffy knew that Dawn had not found the closure she was hoping she would; instead, this exercise had merely reopened old wounds that had never truly healed.
“Are you okay, Lil’ Bit?” Spike asked, moving to put an arm around Dawn. The Padawan shrugged him off and, without even a glance towards Buffy, moved past them towards the car. Spike shook his head.
“Zett’s going to have a handful tonight, that’s for sure,” he remarked. “Remind me to give him a heads up when we get back so he doesn’t take anything she does personally.”
Buffy looked on as her sister stiffly climbed into their car and closed the door, never once looking in her direction. She had no doubts that Dawn would be avoiding her for the next few days or at least try to. But Buffy knew, deep down, that something was coming. And that in the next few weeks, all of them would be facing trials of some kind or another.
She only hoped they were strong enough to pass them.
A slightly revised version of the first chapter- now including the Dramatis Personae which I initially forgot.
Here we go again! And so it begins- Episode V. As I said before, this will be taking a much different route than the movie. I will be centering more on Joyce and Willow and there training, along with some of Buffy training Leia. Luke on Dagobah will probably only get one chapter, if that, as everybody already knows what happens there (As you might have guessed, Dawn in the theater was meant to echo Luke in the cave). Also, I’ve been revising this Episode in my head, and I’ve determined that Spike, Angel and his crew will play a larger role near the end of this story.
I'll try to update this here at least once a week.
Next chapter- Joyce finds out Luke is missing and Han has gone of to find him; Willow starts training at her and Buffy’s old home on Naboo; Buffy arrives with a message for her daughter- oh and the Empire shows up.