‹ Prequel: The Hidden Truth
Sequel: A Last Good Bye

Reaching Through Darkness

Entering The Big Wonder


With blessed, suppressed relief, I pulled the small, weaponless ship out of hyperspace. The bright streaking stars suddenly came into focus; the ship shuddered, causing both us to be jolted painfully on the cold metal of the chairs. A frown formed in my face at the performance of the ship. If pirates were to seek us out, I doubted the ship could endure the hard run I would need to take. Luke Sykwalker, or Master Sykwalker to me, had apolitically informed me this was the only ship the fledging order could afford to lend us for our mission and he wisely advised us to avoid trouble if possible. There was luck with us, for the galaxy lived in a relatively peaceful period of rest from war and inclining prosperity. Piracy and homicide activity was rarer than usual while traveling, promoting business and increasing trade. It was a good time for a simple first mission of the two of us.

A gasp from Karen broke the silence that filled the room after the rough maneuver. I spared a glance over my left shoulder to observe the wide eyes, the leaning forward body, and the slightly opened mouth in awe by someone who never had ventured into space and the core of the galaxy. My attention turned back to manually steering the craft through a course coordinated and dictated by the computer. A black sphere came into view and hurriedly enlarged itself by the second. My apprentice could not hold back her amazement any longer.

“Oh look! Is…is that the famous Coruscant?”

I confirmed her inquire. Indeed, Coruscant was extremely famous for the entire planet housed the capital city of the enormous galaxy. The planet was the home of over a trillion living beings, a billion types of life, both animal and plants, and an assortment of structured cells.

“It’s so darn… menacing and it’s so big! I’ve never seen anything like it and I’ve seen big cities before back at my home. Why is it so dark? Are we seeing this side of the planet at night?”

It was said the planet was the shadow of a god by the beliefs of various religions. I explained to my apprentice how the planet only seemed sinister, but once one entered the atmosphere, one would see they were being misled by the outer appearance. She, like the first time I journeyed this way, did not believe me, but in time she would.

A stream of ships crisscrossed above the surface of the planet. I pressed a button and turned a knob to activate and tune the pilot com to inform the biggest and most famous of landing station of Coruscant our arrival and request a dock to land in. I chose the bay for two reasons. The first reason was to educate the girl, allowing her to see what a typical station was like and to give an impression of how big the population really was. If I gave Karen a number, her mind would not comprehend it, but seeing a trillion people moving about would mean something. She would be introduced to a wide variety of ships and species, getting that shock over. The second reason was one of safety. A busy and one of the largest stations ever made would have mass confusion, letting us remain unnoticed in the crowds and not seen as a threat.

The planet may now be under Republic political control, but many of the citizens bitterly had not forgotten the days of Emperical rule. There were extremely few people, mostly species who lived longer than humans and disliked by the Empire, who were alive before the great war and those who survived were old, powerless, and fearfully silent. My research showed me the ancient Jedi Order’s reputation had died during the war when their numbers could not stand the duration and intensity of the bloodshed spread out on almost all planets. The purge of the Jedi ordered by the Sith had affirmed the opinions of parties against the Jedi and the old Republic. Soon, the word that once held unquestionable respect and unbound honor was uttered as an insulting curse. This attitude had faded during the rebellion with the help of the grinding grip of the power hungry Emperor, yet had failed to completely disappear. I wasn’t sure how the public on would view the new Jedi, but for now I did not want to find out in the wrong circumstances.

The ship passed through the off planet traffic, slanting downward. In mere seconds, the oppressive darkness that my apprentice had remarked on faced away into bright light blue with the sun rays reflecting on the millions of buildings. Colors flashed, vehicles zoomed all around in organized patterns, and noises of all sorts assaulted our ears, making me check to see how Karen was taking this. She was still excited as ever, unable to look everywhere, or get enough of the scene laid before us. I reminded her to put on her safety harness just incase anything went wrong with the landing.

The ship glided its way, slowing down as it got deep into the chaos of traffic hovering around the landing station. I set the ship into the landing cycle and in seconds we felt the impact of the landing supports touching the duracrete floor. Karen undid her harness as fast as she could figure out. After two minutes of hearing her struggle with the devise, I leaned over and squeezed a button to release the catch. There was a look of half covered up embarrassment as she made eye contact and jumped out of her seat. She quickly headed for the narrow hallway were the ramp was. I called out to her to wait a minute as I had a few shut down procedures to accomplish. The feeling of “now” came from her so strong; I could have seen the words glowing from her if the Force permitted it. I grabbed our packs which she had forgotten about in her impatience and accessed the ramp. She peered eagerly down the ramp and outside. A smile formed on my lips and I let her go first. It was like watching a kid explore a new house, only this was a dangerous house that I wanted to keep all sharp objects away from her. I led her through the buzzing crowds to the station’s center to pay our landing and keeping fee with credits from my own private account that Master Skywalker had transferred into. Being a Jedi was not a well paying job; however the New Republic was supportive of our cause and generous with grants.

Once we were financially cleared, I located a holographic map of the city and located our destination. I committed the location to memory and turned around to tell Karen what our next step was. The only problem was Karen wasn’t next to me, but had wondered off some twenty meters away, staring glassy eyed at some sleek ship among the other thirty ships which were in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Admittedly, the ship was a real beauty and for what little Karen knew of ships, I was glad to see she had an eye for taste and wealth. This assured me she could pass for someone who had lived in this region all her life. I wanted us to blend in with the crowds as much as possible and look less like tourists.

I walked over and put a hand on her shoulder. She jumped; she had yet to learn to suppress that reaction, surprise, and looked at me with guilt written all over her face. I wanted to laugh, remembering myself at that age, new to the galaxy and all, never the less, it was not appropriate for my role and I had to swallow the feeling down. Instead, I told her to stick near me. There would be plenty of time to sightsee. First, we needed to find my friend and a place to sleep, his house if possible.