(4-24-15: I am in the process of revising this story. There are a lot of technical issues I've got to fix. I have read Labyrinth of Evil by now, but I will leave this story the way it is plot-wise. I am aware, however, of the issues with how events happened in Labyrinth of Evil not matching with what I wrote here. When I wrote this fanfiction, I didn't have access to any SW books, so I could only go off rough summaries on Wookieepedia. I think for as little as I knew, this story turned out pretty good haha.)
Okay, so this story is written solely by me. I hope you guys all review, and I'll admit, the first few chapters will probably be slightly rocky considering there's not much information on what was happening with Anakin right before the rescue of Chancellor Palpatine on Wookieepedia. Just rough overviews. So I'm working with what I found until that point. Please review, I love feedback! Enjoy!
Luke sighed, rubbing his eyes as he walked down one of the halls of the Jedi Temple that had yet to be renovated. He'd just woke up, and yesterday he had decided that he would go explore a section of the Temple that he had yet to look through. Blaster marks all over the halls caused him to frown in sadness from the thought of what had happened here; the sight always did.
He heard footsteps behind him and turned around, frowning as he saw Han coming towards him. "Hey kid, I know I'm not supposed to be here cause it's sacred and all that, but I need your help," Han told him as he approached.
"What did you say to Leia this time?" Luke asked wearily as he continued his way down the hall, slowing down his pace so that Han could catch up.
"Hey, now who said that my problem has to do with Leia? And why is it automatically my fault?" Han asked defensively.
Luke smiled a little as he peeked into one of the living quarters, stepping over the debris and seeing if there was anything salvageable. "Because Han, it usually is. Especially when you come to me for help. What do I need to calm her down for now?" Luke asked him, making his way over to the closet in the corner.
Han sighed. "I don't know what it was this time! She got angry at me for no reason at all, and Chewy will vouch for me! All I said was that..."
Luke wasn't listening to him anymore. He studied the Jedi clothes he'd found in the closet, consisting of dark brown and black, his hand running over the fabric. For some reason, he felt a little bit of a connection to the clothes. He pulled one of the tunics out, trying to judge details of the original owner from the clothes. It looked like they had belonged to someone rather tall, someone nearly two meters tall. The clothes all showed wear, as if they had been through a lot. The owner must have been active in the Clone Wars.
"Luke!" Han suddenly snapped Luke's attention back to him with the exclamation. "Get your head out of the clouds; I thought you were going to help me, kid."
Luke smiled at him a little sheepishly, taking the clothes out of the closet with the full intention of preserving them, probably for someone's use later on. "Sorry Han, I was thinking of something else."
Han shook his head. "Sure. Thanks. It's not like I need your help at all, kid. Your sister won't even be in the same room as me right now."
"That bad, huh?" Luke asked as he walked out of the room, headed back down the hall.
"You have no idea," Han muttered.
Luke sighed. "Alright, I'll help you out, Han; I'll talk to her again. Though you two have seriously got to stop all these fights. It drives me insane when you bring me into the middle of it, and most of them are for the craziest reasons."
"Tell that to your over-sensitive sister," Han protested. "It's not my fault!"
Suddenly Luke felt a ripple go through the Force, and he frowned, looking over and slowly setting the clothes down on a chair. He stood straight, tuning Han out again as he stretched out his senses, trying to feel where the source of the disturbance was. Han was saying his name, trying to get his attention again, but Luke wasn't paying attention. He had his hand rested on his lightsaber, tense and alert as he realized the Force was fluxing around…him?
"Luke!" Han suddenly shouted, alarmed.
Luke felt as if he was being taken up into the Force, light as a feather while his vision went black, and Han's alarmed cries slowly drained away. Silence pressed against Luke's ears as he felt the sensation of hurtling at light speed it seemed, the ground no longer beneath him. Panic rose within him as he tried to figure out what was happening, but his efforts ceased when he slammed back to the ground, the air knocked out of him when he fell flat on his back. Dazed, Luke tried to register what was happening, the sounds of blaster fire and shouting gradually registering in his ears.
"What in the name of—" a familiar voice started.
"What the kriff was that?" a second shouted, cutting off the other.
"Generals, there's someone over here! It's like they appeared out of nowhere the same time that flash came!" said another voice, closer this time. This third voice also sounded like a stormtrooper, and Luke had a moment of panic, trying to figure out where he was as he blinked rapidly. His vision came back into existance, and sure enough, he was staring up at a stormtrooper. Except he was quick to observe that this stormtrooper was dressed more like…a soldier in the Clone Wars.
Luke groaned as he heard footsteps rushing his way, starting to sit up, but the trooper put a hand on his chest to lay him back down. "I wouldn't sit up if I were you, we're under heavy fire," the trooper informed Luke.
This only confused Luke further. "Where am I?" he asked, a hand on his head. The footsteps reached them before his question could be answered.
The trooper stood up sharply at attention. "Generals!"
"At ease," the second voice from earlier stated.
Luke sat up, turning to look at the new arrivals as his head and back throbbed from the pain of the impact.
His eyes first fell on the taller of the two figures, wearing the exact clothes he'd been looking at in the temple not moments ago. He had shoulder length dirty blonde hair, startling blue eyes—similar to Luke's own—a scar over his right eye, as well as two small ones on his left cheek. The man held a blazing blue saber in his gloved hand, looking at Luke with sharp, cautious, and probing eyes, obviously suspicious of him, especially when he took in the lightsaber at Luke's waist. However, Luke's eyes were drawn in by the second man almost immediately.
Luke would recognize the gray-blue eyes anywhere, and definitely the Force Signature. However, this Obi-Wan was much, much younger, and instead of white hair he had bright auburn hair, and much less wrinkles. His expression was also suspicious, but a lot softer as he took in the aching Luke, though Luke didn't fail to notice the narrowing of his eyes when he, too, beheld the saber at Luke's side.
"And who would you be?" Obi-Wan asked. His saber, like the other man's, was activated, though lowered.
"Luke—" he said, cutting off there as he felt a very strong impression from the Force not to give his last name.
Obi-Wan eyed the saber at Luke's waist. "Are you Separatist?" the other man asked warily, and somewhat forcefully.
Luke frowned at the question. A what? However, his mind was jumping quickly. "No...Republic," Luke responded slowly. It was true. He was a member of the New Republic.
The other man nodded towards his saber. "Where did you get the saber? I've never seen you among the Jedi...Are you Sith?"
It was dawning on Luke by now that maybe, most likely, he had been sent back in time. Back to the time of the Clone Wars, if he was correct in thinking. Though at the same time the notion just seemed...ridiculous, but it was the best explanation he had at the moment. However, the man's sharp tone led Luke to respond quickly and as calmly as he could. "Jedi…not Sith."
He was brief with his words, afraid to give away too much and make a costly mistake.
"How did you get here?" Obi-Wan asked him, much more gentle than the other man was while asking questions.
"I-I don't know. I was going to see someone, and I felt something happen with the Force, and the next thing I knew I was here . . . where is here? And what's going on?" Luke asked, his genuine confusion showing through in his voice.
"Cato Neimoidia," Obi-Wan informed Luke. "Right in the middle of a rather heated battle too."
The second man turned to the trooper. "Cody, go back to the men; we'll handle this. You need to keep them on track. We need to get into the citadel to capture Gunray."
"Cato Neimoidia?" How had he ended up here? What the Force was going on?
Obi-Wan sensed Luke's great confusion and shock, and looked at him with sympathy. However all three of the men were distracted as a blast blew a chunk of ground away not too far from them. "Questions can be asked later. Right now, we need to move, or we're going to get killed."
"Master, can we even trust him?" the second man asked.
"We don't have much of a choice right now, Anakin," Obi-Wan told him. He turned to Luke, helping him up. "I'm Obi-Wan Kenobi, and this is Anakin Skywalker," he told Luke.
Luke's mind screamed at him in confusion and pure shock as he took in the sight of the second man once more. Now, with dawning awe, Luke realized he was standing feet away from his father, whole and on the light side of the Force, not the Sith Lord Darth Vader.
Anakin gave Luke a nod of recognition as Luke nodded numbly. "Alright," he said weakly. Looking up, he saw there was also an aerial battle going on above them. It looked like they were avoiding firepower from the ground and air.
"If you don't mind me asking, where were you before you showed up here?" Obi-Wan asked Luke as the three Jedi made their way through the battle towards, Luke assumed, the trooper whose name was Cody.
"I was at the Jedi Temple. I was just leaving it, actually," Luke told his once-master promptly.
"How could you have been? I've never seen you there. Not once," Anakin said, obviously still mistrusting.
"We have been in the Outer Rim territories for a while, Anakin," Obi-Wan said. "We're not constantly there."
Luke just stayed silent. He had the feeling that he shouldn't reveal that he wasn't from this time. It was a simple nudge by the Force. Right now he just had to blend in and get by until he figured out what was going on and just what point in time he had landed in. He'd have to be careful not to make anything worse by messing up time.
Anakin watched the mysterious stranger closely as they made their way back to the clones for the advance on the citadel. He didn't sense any darkness from the blonde male, but he was still hesitant to trust him. He had appeared out of nowhere in a blinding flash of white right after that flux in the Force that Obi-Wan and he had sensed. They knew nothing about him, and now they were just going to trust him with their lives in the middle of an important battle?
The clones were just ahead of them, and the shower of blaster fire brought Anakin's mind back to the battle they were currently in. Obi-Wan was right: there would be time for questions later. As they drew closer to the clones, they began to meet opposition, deflecting blaster shots with their sabers swiftly and cutting down droids that got too close. Glancing back at the blonde male, Luke, he took note of his green saber and how he handled himself with calm ease in the heat of a battle, with a level head and strong concentration.
"Obi-Wan, your right!" Anakin barked toward his old master. Obi-Wan spun, cutting down the droid that had gotten uncomfortably close to him.
"Cody, any progress?!" Obi-Wan shouted to the Commander.
"Not much, General. I don't think we'll get to Gunray if we keep at this pace!" Cody replied.
Anakin looked over at Obi-Wan, taking up position at his master's back with Luke, all of them forming a small defensive triangle. "We need to get in that building, Master. Perhaps trying a different way."
"What do you have in mind now, Anakin?" Obi-Wan asked him warily.
Anakin's eyes sparkled with mischief. "I think I can sense another way in, under that Manax Tree orchard. There's something underground, probably fungus farms underneath, that lead into the fort. We'll be able to get inside and apprehend Gunray before he makes any escape attempts."
As he told Obi-Wan his plan, he saw Luke giving him a looked that seemed like a cross between awe, curiosity, and…some other strong feeling he couldn't place, especially with how fast Luke hid it when he realized Anakin was still observing him. Puzzled and uneasy, Anakin kept an eye on Luke, making a mental note not to let him out of his sight.
Obi-Wan nodded. "It seems reasonable enough. Not nearly as reckless as something I'd expect to hear from you. Cody!" he called. "Gather up your men and follow us!"
"Yes General Kenobi! This way men! Follow the Generals!" Cody told his men.
Luke followed close behind his father and master, still trying to gather his wits. His father had been a general in the Clone Wars! And he'd led the attack here on Cato Neimoidia! He felt excitement rolling through him, but he kept his demeanor calm and his mental shields up. He didn't want to make his father any more suspicious of him then he already seemed to be.
As they all reached the orchard, blaster fire decreased just slightly, as the droids were focused more on the clones that were trying to get through the fortress the long way. However some droids still tried to stop the progress of the army making its way through the rows of trees.
"Rebreathers on! There's hallucinogenic spores in this orchard, and we have to be careful not to breathe them in!" Anakin called out.
Luke felt a trill of fear go through him. He didn't have one on him. He hadn't planned on going back in time or being here; he wasn't prepared for a situation like this!
Anakin looked back at him, sensing his momentary fear, and got a spare from one of the clones, handing it to him. Luke gave his father a thankful look, situating the device as the small army wove through the trees. Forces on the wall and in the air targeted them, starting to catch on to what the group was doing and focusing their firepower on them. Several clones were struck down, and the Jedi took great care to avoid both blasts and debris. However, there was a blast that came very close to Luke, and dirt went flying. Luke was forced to turn his head away to avoid debris in the face, heart pounding from being in the heat of a battle like this. Out of the corner of his eye he saw Obi-Wan take a rock to the face as he tried to dodge a bigger chunk of earth, and his rebreather was knocked away, lost in the grass somewhere. Stunned, Obi-Wan stumbled back a few steps, activating a trap that released the spores and getting a face full of them.
Anakin turned back to his master, rushing to his side. "Obi-Wan!"
Obi-Wan coughed, recovering, but the spores were already starting to take effect. Luke reached out with the Force, calling the device that had rolled away in the grass to him, handing it to Anakin. Anakin promptly gave it back to Obi-Wan, then proceeded to lead him along. "We need in that fortress!" he barked at the clones, and the army swiftly covered ground. Obi-Wan fought the effects of the spores the entire way, trying his hardest to keep calm as they began to affect his senses while he stumbled along. Luke glanced at him worriedly a few times as the army finally was able to infiltrate the underground fungus farms, finding themselves on the other side of the fortress as they came out above ground again.
Luke stayed close to his father as the little army made their way inside of the building. "Gunray will be making an escape. He'll be on the upper levels," Anakin told them all.
Luke was tempted to ask who Gunray was and what he had done, though he had a feeling that would only cause problems, so he went with it.
Obi-Wan, who had been flinching and reacting to things only he could see since the incident in the orchard, lurched to the side suddenly. "Battle droids!" he called out. Anakin grasped his master's arms, holding him firmly.
"Master, you're hallucinating. There's nothing there," he told him soothingly, still pressing forward. "The spores, remember?"
Obi-Wan seemed to mentally berate himself for a moment. "Right, sorry," he mumbled.
Anakin chuckled. "Just let me call the shots here, Master. With you hallucinating, you're not really in a state of mind to be giving orders."
"And you and your suicidal ideas make you qualified?" Obi-Wan grumbled.
"I'm quite qualified, Master. I'm sorry if you're just too stiff to approve of my ideas," Anakin scoffed, though Luke detected a trace of teasing in their words as they spoke, and he smiled a little.
However, soon the group was met with opposition, and battle droids appeared to combat the group that was pressing forward to their leaders.
"Cody, do you have these guys?" Anakin asked the commanding clone.
Cody nodded. "Of course, General. We can hold these walking tin cans. You guys go on after Gunray; we've got this."
Anakin nodded, then glanced at Luke. "Come on."
The three of them took a different way, up several levels, and they came to a landing pad just in time to see who Luke assumed was this Gunray fellow taking off in a shuttle. Anakin gave a cry of frustration, chasing after the shuttle before he slowed down, recognizing that the shuttle was already too far out of reach.
Anakin was about to let out a stream of curses when he turned, seeing Gunray's mechno-chair. His face lit up with joy. "The coward left behind his mechno-chair in his rush to get away!" he exclaimed happily to Obi-Wan.
Obi-Wan looked at his former Padawan, his gaze focusing solely on him. "Careful, Anakin!" he warned.
Anakin continued his approach to the chair, though when he got within a few feet from the chair; it suddenly opened up and released some sort of gas. Obi-Wan's eyes narrowed and he cried out, "Dioxis!" flinging Anakin back with the Force at the same time.
Luke, who had been approaching along with his father, froze, backing up rapidly from the poisonous gas. However, it seemed it only contained enough to kill someone who got too close, and they were safe where they were. Anakin looked over at Obi-Wan with a weak smile. "Thanks."
"And this is why I'm usually the one in charge," Obi-Wan told him. "You rush into things without thinking."
Anakin stood back up and simply rolled his eyes.