Full Circle

Prologue

"Kaden, you have the worst timing, dear." Nella Staal held her baby closely as she and her husband hurried home to their high-rise apartment complex near the heart of the business district of Coruscant, the city planet. He had been born just days before, and the couple was taking their new son home.

Her husband smiled, "It wasn't entirely his fault." They reached the building and went past some clone troopers who were patrolling the area.

"I know, Ryk." Nella sighed, trying to shake her head away from some of the holos they had passed on the way home. Coruscant looked so unattached, mostly, compared with what was going on elsewhere on other planets in the galaxy. First it had been that promising young Jedi everyone was talking about a few months ago. For some reason that nice young man killed all those little padawans. The image always made Nella sad whenever she thought about it.

Thinking about it now made her hold little Kaden even tighter as Ryk keyed open the door to their suite. She made her way inside and into the little nursery next to their room. She laid the baby carefully in his crib and sat down next to it in a rocking hover chair. Laying her head upon her hand, she watched him fall asleep. Ryk came in and stood behind her, rubbing her shoulders. She reached up with her other hand to grasp one of her husband's and held it tight.

"I can't help thinking that if…" she couldn't bring herself to finish it.

"I know, dear. But I think that perhaps he came just when it was right. A couple years earlier, and he may have been … slaughtered just like those other little children."

"They didn't even see it coming. Their poor parents."

"I know." He knelt down and put his arms around his wife.

"And then all those other Jedi." She looked up at him. "How did this all happen? Just a couple years ago everything was so peaceful. How did we get here? How did the Senate allow Palpatine to gain so much power? It's just unfathomable."

"Yes. But there are still a few Jedi left, hiding out. We'll make sure Kaden gets his training. And maybe he can help bring about some change in the galaxy. I'm still looking for a few politicians that are sympathetic to the Republic. Everything will change, you'll see. This is just a small… sidetrack."

"I hope you're right, Ryk. I hope there are still good people in this world. I just can't believe it, though, with this—this Darth Vader running around with his black iron fist, causing destruction everywhere he goes." With one last look at her baby, she stood up, and Ryk followed her out of the room. "But it'll be dangerous, for all of us. All of us who want change away from this … Empire." She spat out the last word as she settled down in the living area.

Ryk nodded, understandingly, not wishing to say any more to upset his wife. He went into the kitchen to fix them something to eat. He didn't feel hungry, and he knew she didn't either, but they needed to eat something. Grabbing a couple glasses, he poured in some juice while waiting for their dinners to warm in the processor. When they were done, he placed the meals on their dining table along with the juice.

"Nella."

She smiled at him. "I'm not hungry, but you go ahead. I'm a little tired."

"Dear, you need to eat something. Just one bite? Then we'll go to bed."

"All right." She stood up from the couch she was occupying and went to eat some of her dinner. While she was eating, she couldn't help but feel a little detached from the rest of the world and the galaxy. Here she was, enjoying a nice dinner with her husband while her new son slept in the next room. It was just like a holo, a perfect one. Not like those holos she saw all over the HoloNet news programs.

She forced in another forkful. "This is actually pretty good, Ryk." Nella savored the bite before swallowing.

He chuckled. "I wish I could take credit for it."

They ate in silence for a while, Nella lost in her thoughts once again and Ryk in his own little world as well. He knew he needed to do something. Not just because he felt that what the Emperor was doing was wrong, but also because he didn't want his son growing up in this kind of environment. But all that should change if he could get contact with the right people. And then when Kaden was older, he could help effect change as well. As long as there was hope, he thought. Everything would work out. It would all be alri—

"Ryk?" Nella broke into his thoughts.

He looked over at her, taking a sip of his juice.

"Do you think we should hire a nanny droid to take care of Kaden? For safety?"

"You'll be here, Nella."

"Yes, but I think it might be… helpful. I'd feel a lot safer with one when you're gone."

Ryk mulled this over while chewing his piece of steak.

"I mean, what if those troopers or ... Vader … comes here looking for Force gifted children? I don't want them to… to…" She looked down.

"Of course, dear." He smiled warmly. "I'll get on that tomorrow."

"Thank you." She gave a smile back and focused back on her dinner.

Ryk was willing to do anything for his wife, for his family. Anything to keep a small piece of hope alive. There was no longer a chance for him to do anything within the political arena where he had the most knowledge and experience, but perhaps he could effect change from the inside. He had been in contact with a group of other politicians and senators wishing to bring some change. They were few, but he was hoping they could bring others to their cause. He had hesitated to call themselves 'rebels,' and preferred to refer to his group as agents of change. But, really, he thought, their little group was in fact rebelling against this new government that was slowly, over the last few months, stripping more and more of their rights away.

He glanced up to find his beautiful wife staring at him. That smile could always disarm him, even when he was thinking the most awful thoughts.

"What are you looking at?" She turned to look behind her. "Out at the traffic?" Nella smiled.

His face broke into a grin. It was hard not to, looking at those sparkling green eyes with just a hint of the exotic nature behind them. "No, honey. I suppose I was just staring into space." He laughed at the irony, getting up to clear away their dishes. He put them away and walked over to her. "We've both had a long day," he explained to alleviate the worry he saw behind her smile. "Let's get some sleep."

She assented and they headed into their bedroom. As Ryk got ready for bed, Nella went to check on Kaden once more. He was sleeping peacefully. She sighed happily, watching him for a few minutes before also going to ready for bed.