She ran quickly through the darkened streets, occasionally throwing a worried glance behind her. A small girl was held in her arms, no older than five, but her bright green eyes cast a look that seemed beyond her young years. Her mother ran on, soft tears running from her eyes, just as her daughter looked at her quizzically.
"What's wrong, Mama?" asked the young one, emerald eyes glistening. It upset her to see her normally stalwart mother cry, especially now.
Between backward glances and strained gasps for air, the young mother found time to answer her daughter's inquiry.
"Nothing, darling. Just stay quiet."
She obeyed her mother's request, and remained silent even as they ran through the darks alleys of Nar Shaddaa, or the Smuggler's Moon.
Normally, it would seem odd to see a human mother and daughter on Nar Shaddaa, but this pair's circumstances were not in the least normal. The Jedi purges were in its height, hunting down any and every Jedi in the galaxy. Iela herself was not a Jedi, but her daughter, who's father was, had a very high midi-chlorian count. It was for this reason that Iela's husband had sent them out to Nar Shaddaa, where the Imperial Empire had little presence.
But in the past week, Iela had grown nervous about staying on Nar Shaddaa. She had heard rumours that Aurra Sing, the legendary Jedi hunter, was on the Smuggler's Moon. Iela had wanted to leave as soon as possible, but a blockade of Nal Hutta by the Empire made that impossible. They had no choice but to wait here.
A sound behind them startled the young mother. She turned quickly to see four Imperial Storm troopers coming from behind. She pushed her already tired legs to the limit, but it was futile. Five more Storm troopers appeared in front of her.
She desperately looked around from some sort of escape route, but found none. Iela then found herself and her young daughter being surrounded by the nine Storm troopers, as they both became prisoners of the Empire.
A swift kick to her stomach caused her to double over in pain, just as she tasted the metallic sensation of blood rise up in her mouth. Someone roughly grabbed her face and turned it to face themselves.
"Where is he?"
Iela was silent.
"Where is he?!" the voice exclaimed again impatiently. Again, she stayed silent. His hand came down and slapped her across the face, leaving a stinging red mark. She could feel tears well up in her eyes, but she fought them, not wanting them to have the satisfaction of seeing her cry.
"Listen to me, you foolish woman. You will tell me where your husband is, or I will be forced to do something drastic. Something... like killing your daughter."
Rage and horror rose up in her all at once. "No!" she screamed; a raw and throaty scream borne of a desperate woman.
The man grinned maliciously. "Then tell us where your husband is."
She shook her head adamantly, determined not to tell.
"Very well." He turned to leave the room, but felt something grab onto his ankle.
Iela's face, battered and bruised, looked up to him. "Not my daughter." she whispered.
He shook her hand off abruptly. "Do not touch me." he stated coldly, before leaving the room.
Outside, he was joined by a tall, black clad man. A suit of metal enclosed his body, leaving no organic tissue visible. A steady metallic breathing emanated from the suit, an almost soothing rhythm.
"Have the child killed. Maybe then she will talk."
The taller man stopped. "I do not believe that that is wise, my master. The child is very strong in the Force; maybe we could turn her to our advantage. Instead, we should just dispose of the woman. She will never tell us where her husband is, I know it for a fact. But the child, the child we could use."
The first man stopped to consider this. It was a sensible plan; and after all, the child was the Jedi's daughter. Perhaps that would bring him to them.
"Very good, my apprentice. I see the logic in the plan. Bring the child to me and kill the mother."
She had felt her mother die, but had not understood how or why, being only a young child. It was not until several hours after that when she arrived to have her first meeting with the strange man, a man that would play an important role in her life
"What is your name, dear child?" asked the man, now hidden beneath a cloak and a hood.
The girl's lower lip jutted out defensively as she spoke. "Mara Kenobi. My daddy's going to come and save me."
The cloaked figure laughed softly. "That is the plan, my dear Mara."
"Don't you hurt my daddy!" she cried out, stomping a small foot onto the ground.
The man leaned forwards. "Alright then, Mara. I will make you a deal then, okay?"
She stared straight forwards, so perfectly composed for her own age that it was frightening.
"You stay here with me, and I will spare your father. Do you understand?"
She nodded slowly.
"Excellent." stated the figure, a stray note of glee entering his voice. "Guards, you may take her away."
Mara could only stare as two men in red robes grabbed her arms and started to escort her out of the room. She was almost out the door when she heard the man call again.
"Oh, and also, my dear Mara. Your last name is no longer Kenobi, but Jade. Mara Jade, my new apprentice."