epilogue STAR WARS ALTERED UNIVERSE EPISODE I: THE PADAWAN


One Galactic Standard Week later...

"Are you sure this thing is on straight?" said Padmé, adjusting the veil in front of her eyes and over her hairline. Dormé smiled and tucked a thin brown lock from in front of the veil to back under it. "You look simply beautiful, Milady."

Padmé half-smiled, half laughed. "After all these years, I think you can call me by my first name, Dormé." She looked herself over one more time in the mirror before turning to Dormé again.

"So, I do look okay, right?" she said, still a bit unsure.

"You look like a radiant bride, Padmé."

Dormé picked up the end of Padmé's gown and began to gather it carefully, watching the lace tumble out from her hand, whereas she would pick it up again.

"I think your gown has too much lace, Padmé," she grinned from ear to ear. Padmé laughed softly and continued to look back to the mirror. Her hair, as difficult as it had been today, had achieved a softer appearance, as if nature itself understood the importance of the day. A soft knocking was heard at the door.

"Come in," said Padmé.

Threepio came in, followed by a whistling Artoo.

"Miss Padmé, Master Yoda wishes to see you and Master Ani before the ceremony," his life-like voice emanating from his steel body.

"Tell Master Yoda I will be there in a moment."

Dormé gave Padmé one last hug, gathered her gown together and carefully handed it to her. She wiped a tear from her eye. Dormé would no longer be Senator Amidala's bodyguard. She would just be, simply, a friend of Padmé Skywalker.

Padmé smiled at her, clutching the train of her gown in her hand, walking out her bedroom door.

Threepio was waiting outside her door. "My, Miss Padmé, you do look quite stunning in your dress," he said, his arms waving about wildly.

"How does a droid know anything about human beauty?" she asked, a touch of true questioning in her voice. The gold-plated droid straightened and said, as-a-matter-of-factly, "Master Ani programmed such things about human beauty and relativism into my main system. I believe it was just after your landing on Tatooine, if I remember correctly."

Padmé smiled again. She turned and began the brisk walk down the hallway and out the door.

-------

Padmé walked into the courtyard. She was wandering what Master Yoda could possibly want to speak to them about before her wedding. Their wedding. It sounded so nice together.

She saw Anakin on the stone bench. In front of him was Yoda and Obi-Wan.

"Glad you could come so quickly, Milady," said Obi-Wan, standing quickly to make a slight bow. Anakin stood also, bowing slightly and watched Master Yoda nod. Padmé blushed. Even on our own wedding day, he still manages to be cordial toward me. I'm am still a senator, but I am now his wife.

Anakin made room for her on the bench. He was just in his Jedi tunic and pants, but that's who he was. She never wanted to change that.

"I will get right to the point," Obi-Wan said after a moment. "Anakin, it's Siv."

"What about Siv? Is she hurt?" he asked, wondering what now could have happened to his former padawan.

"Escaped, she did. How, we do not," answered Yoda, a deep concern and foreboding surrounding him.

Anakin blinked several times, wondering how in the galaxy this was true. How could she have done this? Wasn't taking the limb of a Master enough?

"How could she have done this?" he asked, standing up and pacing back and forth briskly.

"Remember our talk, do you, about your padawan?" Yoda gently asked.

"Yes, I do," he answered.

"What 'talk', Anakin?" asked Obi-Wan, beginning to wonder why he always seemed left out when it came to these things.

Anakin looked into Obi-Wan's eyes. "She is a Sith, Master. She joined the Dark Side." He turned from his face, and sat back at Padmé's side, putting his head in his hands. She placed her hand on his back, rubbing it gently in smooth circles.

"What can we do, Masters? Is there anything we can do about this?" she asked, genuinely concerned about her fiancé's former apprentice. No matter how badly or rude Siv had treated her, she didn't want to see her go into the Dark with only that despicable Count Dooku.

"I don't know," said Obi-Wan, looking to Yoda.

All were silent a moment. Despite the happy occasion, things seem to be going from bad to worse.

"The shroud of the Dark Side, lifted, it has been. Close eye, we must keep, if at all to learn of the Sith's rising."

"Yes, Master. Perhaps, for now, we will continue this conversation later," he said, giving Anakin his best smile. "We shouldn't let this trouble the one bright light in our friends' lives."

The couple smiled, Padmé taking Anakin's hand. After all was said and all was done, Anakin Skywalker was going to marry Senator Padmé Amidala and leave the Order he so strived to maintain all these years.

The group stood up, preparing to leave when Yoda gave one last thought to Anakin.

"How feel you?" he asked, a twinkle in his calm, gold eye.

Anakin turned, still clutching his future wife's hand. Obi-Wan stopped, too, waiting for an answer.

"About what, Master?"

The diminutive Jedi looked gravely at him, but a slight amusement still in his voice. "Help, we will need, to conquer the remaining Separatist outposts. An experienced Jedi, we will need, in dealing with the possibility of the Sith."

Obi-Wan turned to Anakin, whom turned to Padmé, searching fro approval.

Of course, Ani. This is the path we've chosen together. Don't let me be an obstacle, she thought to him, speaking directly to his heart.

"Of course, Master," said Anakin, turning back to face Yoda and Obi-Wan. "I'll do it."

Yoda chuckled. "Settled, it is, then. By order of the Council, placed you back, on official status, we have. In favor, all, let it be so."

Obi-Wan raised his hand, as did Yoda and Padmé.

Anakin shot her a funny look. "How can a senator agree with the Jedi Council?" he smirked.

"Because," she said, straightening his tunic. "I am under the official protection of the Order and thereby allowed to vote on my fiancé's Jedi affairs."

They both smiled again, and he placed a quick kiss on her cheek. They walked to the garden, where the ceremony was to be, in clasped hands. As they left, Obi-Wan stayed behind momentarily.

"You know, Master Yoda," he began, stepping toward the brick pathway. "Perhaps attachments shouldn't be forbidden after all," he said, wistfully.

"Right, you may be, Master Obi-Wan."

-------

Far from the beauty of Naboo and the peaceful wedding that transpired, a cold, angry Jedi apprentice was waiting final judgment from the Council.

I should have made sure that idiotic senator was dead and killed that treacherous Obi-Wan for doing this to me! If he hadn't grabbed me, I could have murdered him and possibly some of those old fools who call themselves Masters. They thought I wasn't good enough! They all should have to pay...

Just then, a sound was heard. The familiar hiss of a lightsaber. Siv scrambled from the cold, hard flooring to the front of her cell, careful not too touch the force field sensitive bars. She strained her neck to see what was going on. She couldn't see much; it was too dark. But she felt something. A deep, dark tremor in the Force. It moved her from curiosity to fear. Fear that was completely and utterly unspeakable.

She stumbled backward to watch, as the sound came closer. It reached her cell. She backed up against the far wall of her cell, illuminating the figure enough to see a silhouette of the one wielding the saber. The figure then disengaged their weapon and walked to the side panel of the cell. It pressed a few buttons and she watched, with large eyes, as the force field dissipated and the figure closed in on Siv.

"Siv Miraluka, I presume?" said a deep voice, rising from the figure.

"I am," she said, trembling against the cold wall. "Are you...?"

"Yes. I am Lord Tyranus, the one who has been contacting you these past few months," he began, placing the saber at his hip and bowing slightly to the small girl.

"Now, you will come with me and we will exact our revenge on the Jedi who have caused us such pain."

Siv, feeling her fear slowly slip away, nodded her head. Lord Tyranus handed her a black robe he had carried in and handed it to her.

"Put this on. We have a brisk walk ahead of us."

The dark pair snuck about the Detention Center, going through doors, he dispatching the unsuspecting droid guards and opening different doors. Before long, they both made it out into the dark, cool night. He jumped into a black speeder and ushered her in. She clamored in, and he took off, blazing by the many buildings. She felt the rush of air past her cheeks. She had missed that the past few days.

"You are under my protection now, Siv. I will take care of you," he said, a snarl forming.

Siv smiled, a little. Since Master Anakin won't take care of me, I guess my new Master will.

Several standard minutes later, the dark speeder parked near the entrance to the Senate. Lord Tyranus raised himself out of the speeder with a quickness not found in men his age. Siv followed suit and walked to a nearby column, drawing the dark robe closer about her face and shoulders. Then he turned to her and told her what they were going to do.

"We are going to take unregistered transport to the system of Malastare. From there, I will show you what you have been looking for for many years."

Siv's heart quickened. She would finally learn the ways that Master Yoda had told her were forbidden to a Jedi. She would become a Sith.

To Be Continued...

Look for STAR WARS ALTERED UNIVERSE EPISODE II: MASTER AND APPRENTICE

FEBRUARY / MARCH 2006