Wedge and Liane had left the central community building in the center of Cantamage, and were walking along the houses in the outskirt of the town, many female Quelans were coming over to have a few words with Liane. Word about Udin's recovery had spread among the community fast. Especially the young girlfriends of Chati, and Udin's relatives were expressing their relief and their gratitude about Liane's story that Chati had gone to Myr, and her special help to Chati's mother Udin. Chati's friends were eager to know how their friend was doing. Liane took time to answer all the questions and inquieries with empathy and friendliness. It took some time before the crowd went back to their own chores, but finally Liane and Wedge reached the farmhouses on the grassy plains and cultivated farmlands outside Cantamaga.
"You have become quite famous in a short time, Liane," Wedge remarked laughing.
"I'm not seeking this kind of attention. I want to use the skills I have to help any creature who is in need, Wedge. My goal is to serve those who suffer and bring back joy and hope back to their lives," Liane said.
"Yarmod explained to me, how you used the Force to cure those severely wounded Ewoks on Endor and Luke told me what happened between Han and you on the Millennium Falcon. And here you relieved the suffering of Chati's parents I understood. You can be proud of those achievements."
Liane felt a warm blush, covering her cheeks, but she shook her head.
"I don't feel proud, Wedge. Of course it pleases me when I see the joy of those I have given my help, but that's not the reason why I help them. In fact it is not I who is curing and easing the pain the feel. The Ewoks, Han, and Chati's mother surrendered themselves to the help of the Force. It's the Force who is leading me and showing me the way I can give me help."
For a moment Liane thought about the way Luke had accepted her help on Tatooine, and she smiled serenely.
"Those special powers you possess might be of incredible value when the Jedi Order will be established again. Your help as a Jedi healer probably will give the Jedi the credit again in the New Republic."
"Maybe, Wedge, but at this moment the rise of the Jedi Order will benefit more if the number of Jedi Knights will grow. Four Jedi Knights and two padawan learners isn't enough to convince the systems in the New Republic they can rely on the Jedi to bring peace and justice again. In the old Republic there were tens of thousands of Jedi Knights. That's a more reliable number to create trustworthiness."
Wedge Antilles started to laugh, "You're a good observer, Liane. I saw you looking at Yarmod, but you controlled your surprised emotions."
"Yarmod certainly deserves his new status as a Jedi Knight. On Tatooine he was the first of us three who assembled his own lightsaber shortly after we've arrived in Ben's house. We all were really amazed about his achievement."
Wedge cast a lateral glance at Liane. She looked so pleased and content with her friend's initiation. Wedge didn't feel a trace of jealousy through the Force. Liane simply accepted Yarmod's new status as a deserved fact.
Meanwhile they were walking along the smalls paths through the farmlands to the hillside behind the plains. The paths meandered along several small streams which often blocked their way, so they had to jump to follow the path that slowly went uphill. As they reached the foothills Wedge saw a small overgrown steep path which was leading straight uphill. He stopped and pointed to the plateau halfway up the hillside; unbuckled his utility belt, and fastened the belt over his Jedi coat, then he looked at Liane.
"Let's run uphill, Liane. Mon Mothma's underground residence wasn't really good to watch your physical endurance."
Liane looked at her companion with a gleeful laugh. Before Wedgecould say more, Liane fastened her coat between her belt, and sprinted away uphill, running, jumping and somersaulting at an incredible pace. Surprised Wedge watched her go, then he went after her, but Liane had already reached a plateau. She looked back and waited for him to catch up with her.
"Satisfied about my endurance and physical abilities, master Antilles? It was a test, wasn't it?" She asked laughing teasingly.
Wedge looked at her. She didn't show any sign of fatigue, and he had felt how strongly she had relied on the Force to support the difficult run uphill.
"Excellent, Liane, my compliments," He said, "Where did you learn to run this fast?"
"Luke asked me the same question on Endor, Wedge. It's not 'where', it's 'who' taught me to run this fast. The answer is: Anakin, Luke's father. He taught me to use the Force to extend my physical strength. I've practised his lessons in the jungle of Morantan; a far more difficult place, than this uphill path. But you said, that you wanted to have a private talk with me. What's the matter?"
Wedge straightened out his Jedi-outfit and sat down on one of the bigger rocks and invited Liane to sit down next to him.
"What does the Jedi creed tell you, Liane? Luke talked to you about the Jedi creed, didn't he?"
"Yes, he did. Those are the main rules any Jedi has to incorporate in his being, Luke told me," and she continued,
"There is no emotion; there is peace.
There is no ignorance; there is knowledge.
There is no passion; there is serenity.
There is no chaos; there is harmony.
There is no death; there is the Force.
A Jedi has a peaceful mind and depends on knowledge.
He stays serene and in harmony with his surroundings.
Luke told me, that especially the last two competencies are the most important. A Jedi has to commit himself fully to them."
"What about the others, Liane, aren't they less important?" Wedge asked.
"Certainly not, but if a Jedi has a peaceful mind he controls his emotions. In that case the Force will show him the insight and the knowledge he needs to make a right decision."
"What about the rule of avoiding passion and chaos?
"A Jedi has to be in harmony with his surroundings. He has to be a serene part of the Living Force. If he's led by harmony and serenity there will be no chaos and passion as I have seen and experienced during my youth on Morantan, Wedge. At the imperial domains the way of living always felt chaotic and full of passionate emotions of fear, anger and jealousy lead by the Dark Side. Those emotions were embodied by the figure of Darth Vader as the emperor's commander. I have been part of it."
"You mean the way Darth Vader taught you his use of the Force?"
"Yes, Luke's father personified the evil of the Empire. Already as a young girl I felt the evil in his use of the Force. He controlled his men with their fear for his outbursts and evil use of the Dark Side of Force. His tantrums and punishments were driven by his own passion and fear to lose control of his subordinates. Being out of control outraged him. He feared it, and he blamed himself not doing better. His ambitions to be the most perfect Force user in the galaxy and the most obedient servant of the emperor, always inspired him to do better than others , and he expected the same of me."
"Do you blame him for what he taught you, Liane?"
"Not anymore. I have forgiven him his wrong doings and the evil knowledge, that he forced me to learn, for I know he regrets his faults. Thanks to him I have learned what evil the Dark Side of the Force represents and has brought at this galaxy. The Dark Side devours a person, for her way of use of the Force is alluring, easier to obtain and more seductive. The Good Side of the Force asks a deep commitment of a Jedi Knight. He has to surrender himself to the will of the Force, and in return the Force will become his lifelong ally. A Jedi has to feel the Force in his surroundings and become aware of her influence on him in everything he does. I have experienced her power when I assembled my lightsaber. I became one with the great power of the Unifying Force in the Illum-meditation, Wedge. It was a tremendous experience, feeling to be part of of everything in the galaxy."
Wedge saw the brilliant glance in Liane's eyes as she recalled the feeling and the knowledge the Illum-meditation had taught her. He remembered his own experience, years ago, when Luke had taken him to Tatooine.
"Can I have a look at your lightsaber, Shaayla-Car?" He said, using her real birth name.
Liane unhooked her lightsaber and put it in his hand. Wedge stood up and activated the lightsaber. A green blade extended from the disk. As he moved the lightsaber in the several Jedi defensive stances the weapon flawlessly followed his movements. With a nod he switched it off and handed it back to Liane.
"Excellent, you have become a very powerful Force-user, Shaayla-Car? Do you still have your training lightsaber with you?"
"Yes I have. I cherish it, for Luke gave it to me after we had fled to Tatooine. He assembled it. When he gave it he expressed the hope that I would learn to use it. For month I only saw it as another gift, but on Na'ctaMagh'Ba several Jedi Masters of Old urged me to learn how to wield it."
"I have seen your skills with it, when you dueled with Yarmod. You showed a great ability with it. Maybe I should challenge you to beat me in a duel with training lightsaber, Shaayla-Car?" Wedge said, and took of his coat.
Questioningly Liane rose, but as she saw how he took the defensive stance with his old training lightsaber in his hand, she dropped her coat too, unhooked her training lightsaber and ignited it. She too took the defensive stance, as Wedge lunged at her. Immediately she used Force Push to put him of balance, but Wedge easily her attack, with a Force Push himself, reaching out to the Force to foresee her intentions. Her agility amazed him. He swayed his lightsaber in a downward stroke, but Liane blocked him and made a high backward somersault. She focussed her full concentration on the Jedi master's possible attacks, but she also reached out to the Force to foresee a breach in his defenses. She felt that Wedge forced her to use all her skills to block his fierce attacks and hold her defense. He was fast, much faster that Yarmod or Ian during their training battles in Mon Mothma's residence, but Wedge was a fully skilled Jedi in full control of the Force. Liane lunged, but this time Wedge made a high somersault and landed behind her. She whirled around and blocked his attack. The blade of their lightsabers touched and tiny sparkles emitted. Liane sought her union with the Force and remembered Luke's words that training lightsabers were used to learn the Jedi defenses, but useless to attack. However disarmament an opponent was possible. She deepened her focus and stepped back, as if she retreated. Wedge lunged again, but this time Liane lunged too and touched his left thigh with her blade. For a moment she saw him twitch, but immediately he prepared for his next attack. This time he sought a opening in her defense to attack her arm. She jumped aside whirling around again and lunged. With a precise blow she touched his lightsaber. Wedge lost his grip and his lightsaber shot up high in the air. They both reach out to it, but Liane was faster and Wedge's training lightsaber jumped in her outstretched hand. Wedge rose his hand.
"You beat me, Shaayla-Car. Excellent, well done. You've beaten your first Jedi master," Wedge said laughing.
Liane had switched off both lightsabers and handed Wedge his. She reached for her coat and put it on again, before seating down on the rocks again. For a while she was silent. She looked at the tiny houses of Cantamaga down on the plain of Tyr, and reached out to the Force to help her to control her breathing.
"Exhausted, Shaayla-Car?" Wedge asked, taking a seat next to her.
"A bit, master Antilles," Liane grinned, focusing on her breathing to bring it back to normal, "I didn't practise much since I left Dalmaran."
"You did every well. You're fast and relying on the Force for your defense. You even managed to block my attack using Force Push. That gave you the opportunity to regain control of our fight. Did Luke teach you to use Force Push."
"No, Anakin taught me as one of his first lessons. He wanted me to use my aggressive feelings to push objects with the Force. Why did you ask me to fight you, Wedge?" Liane asked.
"I'll explain within a moment, Shaalya-Car, but first I want you to tell me, why you took two padawan learners to follow you to Tatooine, and encourage them to assemble their own lightsabers? Hasn't Luke told you that it's especially his prerogative, to decide if a padawan has reached the high level of Force control and knowledge to perform the Illum-meditation. You've revealed to Yarmod and Ian a part of Luke's method, which leads to the initiation of a Jedi Knight?" Wedge said in a calm, but stern voice.
Liane looked at him with a determined look in her eyes.
"After my Force vision in Mon Mothma's residence I decided I had to find a way to leave Na'ctaMagh'Ba and go to Palomintar Four, for that vision made it clear to me that I have to face Trevor Matrik myself. Once again I saw Luke laying on a funeral pyre with a ashen grey face. It frightened me again, as it did the first time on board the Millennium Falcon, although I clearly felt in that second Force vision that Luke hadn't died, but I also sensed some danger for Luke. Possibly Trevor wants to use Luke as a kind of bait to get hold of me. If I won't go to Palomintar Four and stop Trevor, he might seek revenge and set fire to the funeral pyre. I want to be there, before Trevor can do anything harm to Luke." She said quietly.
"I understand your concern for Luke, Shaayla-Car, but Luke's a Jedi Knight, trained by the old Jed Masters. He possibly will sense Trevor's plan with him in advance, and make sure he stays out of danger," Wedge said, "Force visions aren't always a reliable source of knowledge or information. There's serious danger that you might run into a trap, if you go to and see Trevor Matrik unprepared."
Liane shook her head, "No, Wedge, what I saw is clear to me. All the images of future events the Force has shown me so far have become real. The Force showed me the happy future of almost mortally wounded Ewoks. I have seen Leia's wedding dress in a vision which I passed to Han. Even Luke didn't know she had it made shortly after the Battle of Endor. I know that for the Jedi the future is uncertain with one exception; the Force shows the outcome of strive or fight to those gifted with Jedi Battle Meditation. I seem to have that gift. I have inherited it from my ancestral mother Nomi Sunrider. I believe in what the Force shows me, and I know what she expects of me. I have to act according to her will."
"I understand your point of view, Shaayla-Car, but that doesn't explain why you took Ian and Yarmod with you and went to Tatooine?"
"Don't tell me, you do know, Wedge. You've been to Tatooine yourself when Luke decided that you should assemble your own lightsaber in Ben's house. Yarmod, Ian and I have been improving and practising our fighting skills, using the training lightsabers. Although you, Leia and Luke assigned them as my guardians and protectors, they've become very close friends. I feel responsible for them and those feelings are mutual. I don't know what I will expect, once I meet Trevor. He might have armed men to defend him. Yarmod and Ian insisted to stay with me as my guardians and defend me in case of danger," Liane commented composed.
Wedge was silent for a while.
Liane continued, "In the Jedi archive cave I explained my plan to Yarmod and Ian, and they fully agreed with me. I told them about the Illum-meditation. In the caves near Ben's house in the Jundland Waste both were able to assemble their own lightsabers, surrendering themselves fully to the Force, so they could reach a deep Force meditation level which is needed in that very difficult and intense Illum-meditation. I could also perform the Illum-meditation on board the Astræa while the ship was staying in orbit around Tatooine. Anakin's Force apparition showed the special place where I could find the necessary internal peace of mind to assemble my own lightsaber too. I know that I have given Ian and Yarmod some secret information Luke has told me, but if they wouldn't have been ready to find the right way to perform the Illum-meditation, they wouldn't have been able to assemble their own lightsabers. I'm sure Luke won't blame me for what I have done. Wedge, Ian and Yarmod only could accompany me if they could fully defend themselves as a trained Jedi Knight does, what ever Luke, or you might say."
Wedge looked at the calm expression on her face. Slowly he his hand in a plead of his tunic. He took out two pieces of rock with the Illum crystals.
"I've found these in the vault of the Astræa, Shaayla-Car." He said.
"These are the two halves of the rock from which I extracted the Illum-crystal which is inside my lightsaber," Liane said, "I will bring the two halves back to Ben's house after I have solve my problems with Trevor. I wanted to go back to Ben's house, but Ian and Yarmod convinced me that we shouldn't loose more time and leave Tatooine for Palomintar Four."
"Then why did you go to Mos Eisley?"
Liane started to laugh, "After I had assembled my lightsaber Ian and Yarmod started looking for this padawan's outfit. They searched Luke's private quarters, and found these clothes. They urged me to dress as a padawan learner, like them, and they insisted that we should delay our departure and stop short at Mos Eisley space port to buy a pair of boots to complete my padawan outfit. I must say that my new outfit feels very comfortable."
Wedge laughed out loud too, "Well, I can't say the same, Shaayla-Car. I confess, that I felt very uncomfortable in my ceremonial Jedi clothes, when I returned with Luke to Irithim after my initiation as Jedi Knight on Dagobah, and I still feel more comfortable in my flight suit on board my X-wing. So, you have put these two halves with Illum-crystals in the vault of the Astræa to secure them?"
Liane nodded, "I will ask Luke what he wants to do with the other crystals inside this stone. It's a pity I had to break it. There are many more valuable crystals inside. "
"Luke didn't tell you?"
"Tell me what? What do you mean?" Liane asked, looking up in wonder at her companion.
"A Jedi who has assembled his lightsaber in the Illum-meditation, has to undo the breaking of the stone."
"You mean he has to restore the stone to its original state?"
"Yes, and I want you to do that, Shaayla-Car. Now. Use the Force and show me, you're a Force user, a padawan learner. Restore this stone, so it can be used again. Show me you're able to use the Force to undo the breaking of the stone."
Wedge handed her the two halves with the Illum-crystals. Bewildered, Liane took the two pieces in her hands. She looked at the four transparant glowing crystals still fixed inside the two halves. She had released one of them, which took on a greenish glow and used it to complete her lightsaber. There had been five crystals inside the rock, before she had broken the rock in the Illum-meditation.
Would that mean, that there was a kind of Jedi-meditation to reverse what she had done? Those crystals were absolutely beautiful. It would be a shame if they could never be used in another lightsaber. Luke had told her how expensive and rare these crystals were.
She felt the weighed of the two halves in her hands. The images of the two pieces slowly began to fill in her mind, and she surrounded both pieces with the power of the Force. The two halves started to hover above her hands. With her thoughts she put the two halves together and the Force glow around the two halves melted into one. She moved her hands and gently pressed the two halves together. 'What the Force can separate, the Force also can united', she thought and she felt how the fracture started to glow between her fingers. The glow seemed to meld the edges of the fracture, and slowly it disappeared. She released her hands, but kept the stone with her Force power between them. She lowered the stone until it came to rest in the outstretched hands of the Jedi master opposite her. A few moments she continued to keep the rock surrounded by the Force, then she released herself from her Force meditation and looked up at him. Wedge was still watching her attentively.
He didn't say a word. He only looked at her. Liane noticed some uneasiness under the stern and intense Jedi look in his eyes, but she controlled the emotional feelings. Finally he put the rock away among the pleads of his Jedi tunic. A total silence hang among them. Liane felt calm and self-controlled. She looked away into the valley below her, then she looked up to the horizon and the mountains behind Cantamaga. Her eyes seemed to see something far beyond the continent of Tyr. Wedge noticed the changes in her glance and grabbed her hands.
'Merge your mind with mine in the Force, Shaayla-Car. Share what the Force is showing you with me.' He softly urged.
Liane tightened her grip
'There's a spherical vessel plunging on the ground near a city.' she murmured, 'What kind of vessel is that, Wedge. I've never seen it before,'
'It's an escape pod.'
'An escape pod. Then there must have been a emergency on board a space craft. Now I see a man running to the spot where the pad has landed. Do you also see that man wearing an imperial uniform. He's yanking at the hatch. Oh, look, he pulls out Threepio and Artoo. What are they doing in that vessel? Look he drags out the body of a third passenger. It's ... It's ... Luke. He doesn't move. Wedge, what has happened to him?'
'I can't tell, Shaayla-Car. These images don't make sense. How can Threepio and Artoo be in that pod. They came to Cantamaga with Yarmod and me.'
The images vanished and Wedge and Liane looked at each other. They both felt each other worries about what they had seen.
"You had another Force vision about Luke, Shaayla-Car, it must have something to do with the ones you had before," Wedge said gently, as he released her hands. Liane sat silent, looking up to her companion with a serious glance.
"You saw what I saw, didn't you?" She whispered.
"Yes, clearly, for I asked you to merge in the Force with me, so you shared the images."
"Luke was in that escape pod. He didn't move."
She looked straight into Wedge Antilles' eyes. He saw the worries and questions in her eyes. Liane put her hand on his arm.
"Wedge, you're worried about Luke. These images have worried you too. I feel it. Don't deny."
"I am, Shaayla-Car, but there is an way to know if our friend is in danger. We're Jedi, Shaayla-Car, we should use the Force to help us. We can use Jedi telepathy to reach out to Luke and ask him if he's alright."
Liane nodded and her face showed a faint smile.
"Or I could use the Jedi-pendant Luke gave me. On Tatooine I've used it only one or two times, but Luke didn't answer those contacts. He must have been too busy to speak to me. Only once I heard him utter something, but I didn't understand what he was saying, and the contact broke off immediately," Liane said completely calm.
"Perhaps you can call him that way," Wedge suggested.
Liane took the Jedi-pendant in her hand, turning it over and over between her fingers. She had to admit that she felt a certain uneasiness and reluctance , as her fingers followed the tiny inscription at the pendants backside.
'Mezorahimed dejan Forka imajors dejan bacarlam tarminan,' she murmured and the Force image of Luke and her, which she had seen a first time on Tatooine, appeared vividly in her mind.
Wedge Antilles felt her hesitation and reached to his friend through Jedi telepathy.
'Luke, I'm on Tyr with Liane and the two padawans. How are things going on on Myr?' He asked. Almost immediately he felt how Luke responded with the great relief in his voice.
'Liane, Ian and Yarmod are on Tyr with you, Wedge?'
'Yes, together with the Grann brothers. They too have promised Liane their assistance.'
'Tell Liane I need to speak to her as soon as possible. Ask her to use the Jedi-pendant I gave her,'
'I will, Luke,' Wedge said and released himself from his Force trance.
"Luke wants you to use the pendant now, Shaayla-Car."
Liane nodded, looked at the words on the Jedi-pendant in her hands again and reached out to the Force. Immediately the Force image of Luke Skywalker appeared on the plateau. Luke saw Wedge and made a reassuring gesture at his friend. Wedge looked at Luke's Force apparition in awe, while Luke focussed his attention on Liane.
'Where have you been, Liane? After you've told me, that the residence was under attack I didn't hear anything of you,' He said gently.
"Luke, are you alright?" Liane asked, neglecting his questions, and Luke heard a worried tone in her voice.
'I asked you where you have been. I have been worrying about you, Liane. Why did you leave Na'ctaMagh'Ba without telling me?'
"And I have been worrying about you, my dear friend. I've tried to contact you a few times, while I was on Tatooine, but you didn't respond to the use of the pendant. I thought you were busy, for one time I heard you say something like 'impossi...' , so I understood that I choose the wrong moment," Liane said calm and without reproach.
'You went to Tatooine? Alone? Why?'
"Yarmod, Ian and I used the Astræa, for we wanted to stay in Ben's house for some time," Liane said, "I wanted to assemble my own real lightsaber. Luke, I still can't get the images I have seen of you on that funeral pyre, out of my head. Both times Trevor was mocking me, and told me that you had died, but he lied, Luke, for I could feel your presence through the Force. I even felt the beating of your heart, although very slowly. It's clear to me now, that I have to take part in the confrontation, that you and Leia seek with Trevor. Trevor is my adversary, my enemy, Luke, not yours. I have to face him, for he is my opponent, and seeking me out, and he has an evil plan in mind in which he wants to use you as a kind of bait. Ian, Yarmod and Yarnick and his brothers are coming with me when I will start looking for Trevor on the other continent of Palomintar Four."
'And Wedge is coming with you too?' Luke asked
"Yes, he is. He too has promised to help me. We've found hospitality with the Quelans in Cantamaga."
'Liane, now that you're in Cantamaga, will you please tell Toallin ...'
"... that Chati, his daughter, is with you on Myr. I already have done so, Luke. I'm so glad I told me about her, so I could relieve their sorrow. Toallin's wife, and I think Toallin too, thought that their daughter had been killed by some predators in the forest."
Liane felt Luke's relief.
"There has happened a lot more on Tatooine, Luke. I can't tell and explain everything now. I only want you to know that Ian knows that Ben Kenobi has been his father. Ian's real name is Tama-Hinn Kenobi," Liane said and a overwhelming feeling of happiness and gratitude suddenly began to surround her. In her Force trance she reached out to her brother and cherished his living presence. She heard her brother's voice as he called her through the Force. Luke noticed her warm feelings and her Force connection with his sister's padawan.
'Then you also probably know who's Tama-Hinn's mother, Liane?' He said with a smile.
"I do, it's really amazing what happened to Ian and me, Luke. I'm coming to the other continent soon. I want to be with you. Together we can face Trevor and expel him from the Quelan's hometown, so they can return to Ribana."
Luke was silent for some moments.
'Liane, I can no longer tell you should stay where you are, and let Leia and me do our job, but I want you to consider your plan very carefully. If you meet Trevor don't let him provoke you, don't listen to what he is telling you about the Dark Side. Now listen carefully, my lovely comrade. Once on Myr and near Ribana you will find all the help and support you need. I want you to remember that.' Luke said, and Liane felt his seriousness.
"I will remember, and I'm looking forward seeing you again, Luke. I can defend myself against the influence of the Dark Side, I can defend myself with the Good Side of the Force and if necessary with my own lightsaber. Trevor won't seduced me to use Anakin's evil teachings again, for I'm your padawan learner, master Luke. 'Mezorahim dejan Forca tusale, my beloved friend, and please, be careful."
'We'll meet on Myr soon, my love,'Luke said, 'Remember, Liane, we're luminous beings, eternal partners, we know how to support one another. Mezorahim dejan Forca tusale, Shaayla-Car Kenobi, lovely daughter of my old master.'
The image of Luke Skywalker disappeared as Liane released herself from her Force connection with him.
"I didn't tell him that Ian is my brother. How does Luke know my real name?" She said aloud.
"Didn't you hear that your brother answered your feelings for him, Shaayla-Car. Even I heard him call your name, so Luke certainly has," Wedge said.
Liane started to laugh, as she realize she wasn't alone.
"Wedge, I almost forgot that you are here with me."
"I saw Luke appear on this spot, when you went in your Force trance using the pendant," Wedge said, "It was awesome. You've always spoken with him this way, haven't you?"
"Yes, and you have heard what we were talking about, haven't you?" Liane asked with some suspicion in her voice, but almost immediately she started laugh, "I shouldn't care if you do, Wedge. The Force is showing the Jedi Knights anything they need to know."
"As the Force is showing it to you too, Shaayla-Car. You're one of the Jedi Knights of Luke's new order," Wedge said, as he pulled her to her feet.
Liane raised her eye-brows, "I still have a long way to go before I can pass the Jedi trials on Dagobah, Wedge. I have accepted that Luke will be my Jedi master, but he hasn't yet accepted me officially as his padawan."
"Shaayla-Car, what has Luke told you about the Jedi trials?"
"Nothing in particular. What I know I have read in Ben's ancient textbook: the Jedi Path. There are five trials a Jedi has to pass in five different disciplines: skills, courage, spirit, flesh and insight."
Wedge took the small braid she wore at the side of her head in his hand, and unfastened the end. Slowly he untwined the strands which formed the braid, then he took out the hair bands that held her pony tails. Liane's amber brown hair fell on her shoulders. She raised her hands to protest.
"What are you doing, Wedge?" She asked in wonder.
Wedge Antilles didn't answer, but put the cowl of her Jedi coat over her head, then he took off the brooch which was fixed over the clasp of his coat and fastened it at hers.
"Luke will give you your own brooch, Shaayla-Car," He said at a very official tone, "I'll give you mine for the time being, as a token of your initiation as Jedi Knight. You're one of us now, Shaayla-Car. You have proven yourself that you are a worthy follower of the Good Side of the Force. Don't object against what I'm telling you, Shaayla-Car. Jedi master Luke Skywalker will accept my decision. He knows I'm right."
"Are you telling me, that I'm a Jedi Knight, like Luke, like you, like Leia, and Yarmod ....like my father and mother once were, ...like master Yoda, and all the old masters ...I've spoken to in the Jedi archive," Liane stammered.
"Like your ancestral mother Nomi Sunrider, Shaayla-Car," Wedge said calmly.
Liane looked at him with her eyes full of disbelieve.
"But ... but ... the trials. I ... haven't ..." She said stammering.
"A padawan doesn't have to proof his Jedi skills in some special trials always, Shaayla-Car. You've passed those trials in many different ways, so there's no reason for you to proof yourself once again on Dagobah. Your Jedi skills match those of Luke and mine, for you've assembled your own lightsaber in one of the most intense Jedi meditation, and several minutes ago you've beaten me in a lightsaber duel. Yarmod told me that you have shown a great courage and commitment at the truth about your family relation with Ian, for you helped him to accept the new truth about your real parents, and you've made up your mind, to confront the one, who is looking for you to make you his apprentice. You're not running away of your responsibilities, when you're facing dangerous situations, showing great skills of insight and knowledge. Over the years you had to face several hardships and losses, as you were deprived of your memories for a while, and when you found out the truth about your upbringing. It certainly hasn't been easy, but you're as strong in the Force as I am. You can use and control her power. She is your ally, and you've accepted and are relying on her guidance in everything you do."
Liane was silent, for a long time. She had heard the truthfulness in Wedge Antilles' words, but this new truth needed to become a part her. A Jedi Knight, she was a Jedi Knight, like her mother had been, and Ben, Obi-Wan Kenobi, her father.
"Shall we go back to the village, Shaayla-Car?" Wedge said gently, and put a hand on her shoulder.
Liane blinked and looked around. The plateau was still the same, the clouds in the sky were still covering the continent of Tyr, and yet everything looked different, brighter, more colorful, more intense, as if she looked at her surroundings in a new way, as if she could see through the veil that had covered her eyesight. That veil was lifted and showed her the new path she had to follow; she wanted to follow.
"Wedge, Yarmod... He is ..., I saw..., Why didn't you gave him your brooch. He has been your padawan," She asked still confused.
"The brooch is a symbol, Shaayla-Car. The symbol of Luke's new Jedi order. I want you to wear mine, because you're the most difficult person to persuade, and accept a new level of truth. Yarmod and Ian already have committed themselves to their goal when they became padawan learners. You have always doubted the path which had been laid out for you after you've met Luke on Morantan."
Liane started to laugh and put her arm through his.
"Maybe I still need more Force awareness, Wedge. Maybe I still have some doubts."
After Luke had talked to Liane, he left the cave and walked up the mountain ridge to meet a group of Cornell's men who were excavating the new canal. He had promised he would help them clear away some heavy boulders. The warmth of Palomintar's bright star brought a pleasant feeling of serenity and peace of mind. He reached out to the Force and felt the presence of all living things around him. He felt the presence of his sister who was assisting Han and Chewbacca in the underground cave, helping Cornell and his men. He felt a strong new tremor which presented the young Quelan female Chati who was growing fast in her believe of her new skills. What a lucky coincidence that he had told Liane about her. Now Toallin and his wife didn't have to be anxious anymore about their daughter's disappearance. Liane's unexpected arrival on Tyr probably had relieved their sorrows. Liane, no Shaayla-Car Kenobi, as her brother Tama-Hinn had called out her name through the Force, daughter of his beloved master Obi-Wan Kenobi. Luke cherished the memories of his old master that entered his mind.
"You knew, Ben. You knew it from the beginning. You knew she was your daughter, that's why you've been looking after her," Luke thought, and a serene smile appeared around his lips. "You shared the obligation I took upon me when Anakin asked me to train her as a Jedi Knight, with me. Thank you, Ben, for your care for Shaayla-Car. She has proven herself worthy of your care. I wonder how she has found out the truth about Ian, or I should said, Tama-Hinn, your son and herself. Ian and Liane, brother and sister. It feels like the revelation when I found out on Dagobah that Leia was my twin. Unbelievable are the ways of the Force."
Luke looked up at the sky above him. He felt a deep longing inside to be united with the young woman who was his eternal partner. He recalled her words and knew she had been right. Trevor was her adversary, her enemy, her opponent. He could only support her, and show her the different ways this problem could be solved. For a moment Luke pondered on his last thoughts. He shook his head. No, master Skywalker, you don't have to advice her, she will follow her own path, for she knows what she has to do. But did that mean that he would have to sidestep and remain in the shadow, leaving it up to her to face and confront a possible Dark Side user. Again Luke shook his head. No, he had to support her in this case, and face the challenges she had to face. Main question was, how he could be at her side at a crucial moment.
Luke followed the path upward and reached the spot where a few harvest men were digging out the canal for the new river. They greeted him with a nod.
"I'll give you a hand," Luke said, and unhooked his lightsaber, "Step aside for a moment, I going to clear away those larger blocks of rock."
The harvest men jumped out of the trench and watched the young Jedi warrior who pressed his lightsaber up to the hilt on several place at the rocks at the bottom of the trench. The heat of the blade caused a melting tremor in the rocks, as Luke pressed his lightsaber at different spots. Suddenly the heavy rocks fell apart into tinier fragments. The harvest men cheered as Luke jumped out of the trench.
"Thanks Ben. Your help always makes our digging a lot more fun and easier," They said as they started to clear away the fragmented rock, "It's pity there aren't more of your kind to help us. The general's wife has also been helping us this way, but she and her husband are supporting Cornell and the others in the underground cave. They made a lot of progress recently. Hey look men, there is the Wookiee friend of the general. Chewbacca, we're over here. Did you come to give us a hand with the digging, too?"
Chewbacca came walking over, he greeted Luke with a grunt, jumped in the trench and easily lifted a heavy basket with broken rock. The Wookiee looked at Luke. The young Jedi raised his hand and used the Force to move the basket to the edge of the path where he turned the basket upside down to empty it. At a steady pace the harvest men, Chewbacca and Luke continued their work. Under the warm Palomintar star the job was tiresome, and the Quelans began to show signs of fatigue.
"Let's take a break," Luke said, after he had emptied another four baskets, "It does not make any sense, to completely exhaust ourselves in this heat."
The harvest men looked at the stretch they had excavated and looked pleased.
"Good work, Ben. We've done more than we intended, thanks to your help and that of the Wookiee. At this pace we can complete the new riverbed much sooner."
They walked over to a shadowy spot under a group of dense trees and sat down. The harvest men shared their rations with Luke and Chewbacca, supplying the Wookiee with several large pieces of dried meat. Chewbacca growled satisfied as he sank his teeth into the meat.
"You look a bit worried, Ben. Are there troubles ahead?" One of the harvest men remarked, seeing the thoughtful look on Luke's face.
Luke shook his head.
"No, Faollin, my plan to free your home town is still in progress, but I have to find a solution for some details which have shown up recently. It's nothing to really worry about."
"Last time you told us that you followed the underground dried out riverbed nearly up to its exit. Does that mean that you can enter the underground caves of the intruder? Are you really planning to sneak into those caves?" Faollin asked.
"No, it's a backdoor entrance which I will keep as a surprise attack in case a confrontation would fail. Therefore it's very important that your work here continues. Cornell's plan to lead the river back into it's old underground bedding with the exit near Ribana still is part of my plan to free Ribana of the intruder."
"It will still take a long time before we can lead back the river, don't you think so, Ben?" Wulann commented.
"Certainly, but we have to make sure that Ribana's inhabitants will benefit again from a hot water lake and the river near the city in the future, "Luke answered elusive," so we have to prepare these new channels for the river very carefully. They have to be strong enough and sustainable to endure for a long time."
Wulann showed a big grin, "And if we can drown that intruder in his caves at the same time, we have even more profit."
They all laughed.
"Let's get to work again, men. The sooner we have completed this channel, the sooner we can finally return home to Ribana," Faollin said and jumped to his feet. He grabbed his broad shovel, jumped in the trench and began to fill the baskets at a tremendous pace. The others, including Luke and Chewbacca followed him.
For several hours they worked on. As the Palomintar star was setting and the heat of the day declined they went back to the base cave, talking to each other in an elated mood. Luke followed them and listen to their voices, as suddenly his sharp eye-sight noticed several spots, hovering above the plains below. He ran after the Quelans and grabbed Wulann's arm.
"Seek coverage. There are probe droids advancing in our direction. Tell your men to keep silent and stay out of the open fields."
Wulann immediately passed on Luke's warning and within the blink of eye all the Quelans seemed to have vanished. Luke and Chewbacca found a hiding place among the canopy of a large tree. Luke watched the approaching black droids. There were three of them. They passed over the spot where the Millennium Falcon stood, hovered a few moments, then drifted uphill. Luke watched the devices with a worried glance. What if those probes could detect life-forms, what if they had been fitted out with heat seeking sensors, what if those probes would detect the excavation site? The probes were still advancing, they lowered in position and started to drift near the canopies of the uphill forest.
"Wait here for me, Chewie," He whispered, and moved stealthily to a new position on a higher branch. He took his lightsaber in his hand and waited until the floating droids had almost reached his position. With a high somersault he launched himself of the tree branch, ignited his lightsaber and cut the blade through all three spying probes. The broken devices plunged to the forest ground in halves.
Luke jumped down and walked over the remnants. Carefully he inspected the debris, then he looked around to find the Quelans.
"We can get back to the cave safely," He said aloud, but to his surprise he heard the voice of Wulann from above.
"Step aside, Ben. We want to secure these spying eyes. Cornell certainly wants to have a look at them."
Luke stepped aside, looking above him where he had heard the voice, when to his surprise a huge net of transparisteel foil fell from the trees, covering the debris of the probes. From all side the Quelans jumped down and started to pull the edges of the foil together.
"Got them, Ben," Wulann said as he walked over to Luke. For a moment Luke looked amazed at the changes in Wulann's appearance, then he started to laugh, "You were up on these trees all the time?"
"Of course, when I saw you jump in midair with your ignited weapon I took a position on one of the lower branches to make sure those nasty devices wouldn't get lost. We have seen them before. Those flying droids made it too dangerous for us to get back to Myr, after we brought our fellow Quelans to Tyr. Cornell warned us that we could have an encounter again, when we started our work again, but these ones won't do any damage any more, thanks to your amazing action."
"How did you to get that net up between those trees?" Luke asked,
"This is our way to keep the Urams in the nut forests on Tyr at bay, Ben. Those predators are a nuisance during the harvest of the nuts. We stun them, and as they toppled on the ground, we cover them with these foil nets. We always release them after we have harvested the nuts, because the Urams are the guardians of the nut trees."
"Well, the ability to change your skin color has a lot of advantages. I didn't notice any of you climbing those trees," Luke said with a lot of admiration in his voice.
The other Quelans had secured the bundle with extra ropes. They quickly created a small travois on which they fixed the bundle. Chewbacca dragged it downhill to the base cave entrance, where the harvest men told Cornell about the encounter. Luke told the leader of the harvest men that he wanted to take apart the debris to find out what kind of danger these devices hold. Together with Han, Cornell and Luke brought the probes inside the main cave, where Leia joined them. Cornell untied the ropes and looked at the halves. Leia cast a glance at the probes and nodded.
"Former imperial probe droids, Han, ancient models," She said and looked at her husband with a worried look in her eyes. "It's likely that Trevor might know we've landed on Myr. Could it be, that Vestor has informed Trevor, after the Basilisaea pursued us?"
"Who sliced them in halves?" Cornell interrupted.
Wulann grinned, "Ben did it, Cornell. He demonstrated his skills as Jedi Knight. I've never seen another guy jumped that high, somersaulting in midair, and slicing these mechanicals in halves with his lightsaber, before we could blink."
Cornell looked at Luke, then cast a last glance on the broken probes again.
"I want to analyze their ways of operation, so we might have a better protection against another encounter."
Han pointed at several different antennas.
"Those aerials transmit images of their surroundings at a short range, not more than a few kilometers away from a receiver. Chewie and I have seen similar devices during the Civil War. The imperials used these ones for short range spying only. My conclusion is that our man near Ribana has send them to keep an eye on this side of the mountain ridge. We all have to be cautious the oncoming days. He might have seen my friend's action which means that he might know that a Jedi Knight is hiding somewhere on Myr."
"Impossible, general Solo, Ben eliminated them within the blink of eye," Wulann commented.
"Let's take them apart," Cornell said, "then we will know for sure what more dangers are hidden in these probes. General Solo, could you and Ben do it."
"Chewie and I will do the job. Luke, you'd better stay out of sight the oncoming days. Maybe you and Leia can do some further investigation in the underground riverbed. Last time you said you thought you heard noises."
"I hear some strange sounds, but I will follow your advice."
"Master Solo," Chati asked, working her way through the circle of Quelans who were still standing around the debris in the transparifoil net, "May I help you and Chewbacca? I want to know what all this circuitry is used for."
Cornell and Wulann made a gesture and wanted to object.
Ronall looked at his father, "Might be a good idea, father. If Chati knows their working she could help us in the future to avoid a next encounter while we are doing our job."
"I don't know, son, if the general is willing to have annoying busybody around."
Before he could continue, Chewbacca, Luke and Leia roared with laughter.
"Cornell, I'm quite used to have annoying busybodies around me," Han said, winking to Chati and Leia, "I'm married to one. Chati, you're welcome to help Chewie and me. Cornell, may I suggest to do the job inside my space craft. Most of my equipment is on board my ship."
Cornell nodded, "On condition that you tell me what these things are secretly transmitting."
Cornell looked around the circle of his men, and his human friends.
"This time we have been lucky," He said.
Luke nodded with a serious frown, "Yes, but a next time these probes might detect the new channel up on the ridge. We should take some measure to cover our presence, and protect your men during their work."
'Leia, I need to contact Nori Thai as soon as possible. Maybe he can help us.' Luke said to his sister.
'Are you alluding, to a nightly meeting with him again.' His sister answered.
'Not necessarily. Nori and I have found a new way to get in touch, but I don't want to have another discussion with Han again about Nori's reliability.'
'The dismantling of these probes will keep him busy, Luke, so he won't notice if you're going outside. I'll keep an eye on him.'
The twins winked imperceptibly at each other, only Chati seemed to notice that they had been secretly talking through the Force.
In the underground network of Darth Golluth, the self-proclaimed future emperor looked at his human assistant who was sitting on the opposite side of the table.
"Enjoying yourself, colonel," the dark lord chuckled.
"Yes, my lord, although it's a bit boring that we don't hear anything about the whereabouts of Lady Vader, nor of her friends." The undercover imperial agent answered.
"Yes, yes, you're right. Maybe I should reconsider my plan, and start looking for her myself again. Maybe I should ask admiral Vestor to take me on board the Basilisaea one more time. I could leave this place safely under you supervision, colonel," Darth Golluth muttered to himself.
Doran Whain bowed. A million different thoughts rushed through his mind. If he had to stay on Palomintar Four he wouldn't be able to continue his secret mission. He had to inform the leaders on Coruscant as soon as possible. Yet, it would also create an opportunity to get Luke Skywalker inside the underground network. If Trevor would come back with Liane Solichor, Luke and he would be able to help her. But both options held many uncertainties. He would better distract Trevor Matrik, and focus his attention at other possibilities.
"My lord. It would be a great honor to be supervising this place in your absence," He answered cautiously.
"Can you contact the Basilisaea and tell Vestor to come down to meet me?" Darth Golluth asked.
"Yes, of course, I can, my lord,"
"Good, then order Vestor that he should send a transport ship to Palomintar Four as soon as possible. But first we will empty these bottles of Palomintar wine, colonel. You can send the order later this evening. I'm not really in a hurry anymore. I know time is working in my advance... no our advance, my dear colonel. You remember our agreement, don't you?"
Doran nodded, "I do, my lord. Will I pour you another glass of this delicious wine?"
Trevor Matrik held out his glass, "You have excellent manners, colonel. To your health, and that of Lady Vader. Did you know that I once offered her to marry me. She refused my proposal. Her words are still reverberating in my mind. She was insulting and humiliating me. She's is a very arrogant person. Do you like women who behave as if they are in command? The Supreme Chancellor of the so-called New Republic is a woman too: lady Mon Mothma. Once she was a minor senator. How she could get her nomination to Supreme Chancellor is a mystery to me."
"I like strong women, my lord," Doran said, "They always remind me of my mother and her sisters. They have been the secret advisors for emperor Palpatine after he got rid of the Jedi."
"I haven't been aware of a secret council of female advisors, colonel. I should have known, for I spend a long time on Coruscant."
"I know, my lord. The emperor always spoke with great respect about you. Have you really been the youngest admiral of the imperial space fleet ever?"
Doran held out the wine bottle again and poured Trevor another drink.
"I was, colonel. I've got my commission from the emperor personally. I've got it, because he felt how strong the Force was influencing me and controlling my actions. He wanted a Force-sensitive commander of the imperial fleet, so I could control his dark apprentice Darth Vader. Yes, yes, you look surprised, colonel, but the emperor didn't really trust Darth Vader, so I had to keep an eye on him. I can tell you the emperor was most displeased when he found out that Darth Vader had his own dark apprentice: his daughter Liane. So the emperor send me to Morantan more than once to look after the progress the girl was making. Well, her progress to become a Sith, was disappointing. I have never met a more stubborn creature in my life. Not only was she stubborn, but also headstrong, and proud-hearted. She often opposed her father and refused to carry out what he taught her about the Dark Side of the Force."
Trevor started to laugh.
"But her father punished her always for her disobedience, so in the end she surrendered herself to his biddings. You just said, you like strong women, didn't you?"
Doran nodded. Trevor looked at him with a gleeful, but also suspicious smile.
"Colonel, what would you say, if I would arrange a marriage between you and that Lady Vader. It would give you and me direct influence on this woman. I'm almost sure that your offspring with her would be very powerful."
Doran swallowed a curse, before he started laughing.
"Why are you laughing, colonel. Is my idea so peculiar? The last time I have seen Lady Vader I must admit that she is a beautiful and very attractive young woman."
"That might be so, my lord, and my apologies for laughing, but I've never thought about getting married, and certainly not with a Sith lady. Another drink, my lord."
"Yes, yes," Trevor answered and emptied his half full glass in one gulp. Doran poured him another drink.
"Think about it, colonel, and now I going to rest. I will take this last glass with me. Droid, bring me to my private chamber."
The protocol droid ran forward. His master rose, but had to hold on to the metal arm of his major domus to keep his balance. He stumbled to the door while the droid supported him. Before he left the main cave, Trevor turned around to Doran Whain.
"Think about it, colonel. Sleep well. We will talk again tomorrow. Forget what I said about that message to the Basilisaea. It can wait."
"As you wish, my lord," Doran said who has risen and bowed.
Trevor disappeared and Doran Whain pensively looked at the leftovers on the table.
"Clear this mess," He ordered another protocol droid.
He left the main cave and stealthy found his way to the communication center. He secured the door and switch on several displays. He activated one of them and a group of imperial high ranking officers appeared.
"How are thing going, Nori?" The eldest asked.
"I need to find a way to prevent our former admiral from leaving with the Basilisaea, sir. He said tonight, that he wants to start looking for the daughter of Darth Vader himself again. I have to leave admiral Vestor a message and order him to send a transport ship down to Palomintar Four."
"We will handle this, Nori, and you don't need to look for this young woman any longer, anything else."
"I had to launch some probe droids Trevor gave me. He keeps telling me that he wants to remain in control of the environment around Ribana and the mountain ridge."
"Those probes can be useful for your mission too, Nori. Carry on and don't worry about the Basilisaea. The administration of the New Republic and our council on Coruscant will keep admiral Vestor from violating the truce. He won't land again on Palomintar Four and our friend will have to stay where he is. He will never find the daughter of Darth Vader, unless some of those bounty hunters might catch her."
"The bounty hunters Trevor hired are withdrawn, sir. Trevor didn't want to raise the bounty. I had to tell them the hunt was over."
"Good. Nori, if lady Vader would show up on Palomintar Four, take good care of her, hide her somewhere where Trevor can't find her, and inform us. We will contact the Supreme Chancellor of the New Republic to discuss further actions."
The holographic images disappeared. Nori deactivated the display, when his eye caught the blinking of a warning signal near a small display screen. His switch it on, and to his horror he saw flashes of a jumping person with an ignited lightsaber, before the screen went blank.
'Luke,' He thought, 'Those probes had encounter with Luke Skywalker and registered his presence before he could eliminate them.'
He replayed the whole sequence of the images the probes had transmitted.
'To which part of this continent did Trevor send these droids? Well, anyway, these droids are permanently out of order. I have to avoid that Luke will have another encounter with Trevor's surveillance probes, but first I will change the outcome of this surveillance.'
Nori activated another display and typed his access code. Rapidly he searched some information system with countless quantities of images until he found a number of sequences that suited him. He downloaded the files and went to work. Within half an hour he compared the original sequence with the one he had changed. Now the end showed the wings of a kind of reptilian bird of prey, a claw reached out to the probes and the screen went blank. Nori replaced the transmission the probes had sent with the alternated one, and scrambled the first one.
'So, and now I will make a slight difference to the programming of Trevor's remaining probes,' Nori thought.
He switched off the communication center, left the cave and went over to a smaller cave at the end of a long corridor. He slid the door aside and entered. The cave only contains a large number of boxes. Nori Thai opened one of them and nodded with a big grin. He took out the twenty or so main surveillance droids and interconnected them on a docking station. A screen above the station activated and Nori accessed the internal file of the first droid in its docking. He started looking at the coding and found the place he wanted to change. Quickly he altered the code and saved it. Then he ordered the station to make similar changes to the internal files of all the probes. Within a couple of minutes the station confirmed the changes and Nori deactivated the station and put the probes back in their original box. In the next twenty probes he made the same change. So he continued until he docked the last fourteen main probes in the station. He sighed relieved when he put them back, closed the box and switched off the station. He looked at his chrono. It was far after midnight. He had to hurry if he wanted to leave Luke a message. Cautiously looking around before he left the cave, he locked the door and went to his own quarters. Once inside he secured the entrance code and pushed the couch aside. He sat down on the cave floor and lifted the panel of his couch. Carefully he activated a provisional keyboard and a holo-display. He typed the access code and waited. The minutes passed by and impatiently Nori looked at the screen, then the image of Luke Skywalker appeared.
"Nori, well, I'm glad you contact me as first."
"You had a nasty encounter with some of Trevor's probes, hadn't you?"
"I could eliminate them, but I will have to seek another place to hide."
"Not necessarily, Luke. I saw the recordings the probe send back, before Trevor watched them. I have replaced the images which could have revealed your presence with some more horrifying others. I also changed the surveillance range of all the main droids. You don't have to worry about those probes. Your presence is secured. Any news about your lost padawan?"
"I have just heard that she is safe, Nori."
"Good to hear. My superiors have just confirmed again I don't have to look for her any more. In fact they have ordered me to keep her away from Trevor if she would show up."
The image of Luke Skywalker grinned.
"Good luck, Nori. I wonder if you will succeed this new mission. Have you thought about a way to get me inside Trevor's underground residence."
Not yet, Luke, but I'll give it another thought. I'm busy to re-program Trevor's droid lackeys one by one, so they will operate on my commands if necessary. Maybe if I have finished that job I will have an opportunity to hide you somewhere in this network of cave without those droids would betray your presence. I hope your padawan will still stay out of sight for a while. Maybe you can tell her we don't need her presence here. Don't you think that you and I can handle Trevor together?"
"Sure, we could, Nori, but my padawan probably has some different ideas as I told you."
"So she would not leave this matter to you and me."
"No, so, please, stay alert, and keep your promise to warn me in case she shows up around Ribana."
"Don't worry, Luke, I will. In fact I'm looking forward meeting your padawan."
Now Luke laughed.
"You will never forget her, Nori, I can assure you."
Nori Thai thought at the proposal Trevor Matrik had done him during their common dinner, and decided to keep it secret. The whole plan was ridiculous and irrational, as all Trevor's ideas were about the revival of the empire.
"Nori, one last question before we close down again. How can I reach you?"
"That's easy, Luke, just activated your infocom at the frequency you gave me, and I will be notified through the tracker we exchanged the first time. That tracker is still inside the collar of my uniform."
"You're are indeed an expert in this field, Nori. I could learn a lot from you." Luke said.
"That is mutual, Luke, but I do not think I can master your Jedi skills. Well, my friend, I take the remaining hours to rest. It's been a long day and an even longer night, " Nori said, and disconnected. He buried the provisional equipment under his couch. With a sigh he laid down, closed his eyes and tried to get some sleep.
Inside the main cave of the harvest men Luke also sighed as he deactivated his infocom. Tomorrow he would let the others know, that they did not have to be afraid of another droid attack, although prudence and attention remained necessary. As he laid down on the nagawa furs his thoughts reached out to Liane'Sleep well, my lovely pixie. It's good to know that you're near.'
Through the Force he felt her presence on Tyr. She had grown strong, she was a Jedi Knight. A Jedi Knight, like he had promised his father Anakin. He turned to his other side and fell asleep with a happy smile on his face.
To be continued...