He opened his eyes and he was hit.

The first thing that came to him, smacking him in the face with the comparative force of eighty proton torpedoes, was the metaphorical pain: the pain of knowing that he was alone. The pain of knowing that with only a dozen exceptions, of ten thousand of his kind, he was the last. The feeling of hollowness somewhere in his gut that told him he was alone.

Ten thousand of his colleagues, friends, comrades in arms, reduced to less than a dozen of them, and he couldn't tell who they were either. All that death in a week. If that.

He knew his kind had survived worse than this before: that this was not the first genocide that had hit their ranks. However it affected him more deeply now than any history book could ever have, mainly because... mainly because, he had been there. He had felt it and seen it - and experienced it.

A treachery he couldn't even begin to comprehend. To some part of his subconscious realised and he subtly ignored it, but he could not summon to rational thought an explanation as to why, in the middle of a battle, his soldiers had turned on him and fired on him.

The second thing that hit him, rather harder and more immediately nastier than the first thing, was the far more literal pain: blaster wounds and aching joints. He was lucky to be alive and he knew it. Although against those soldiers... some part of him knew, more than mere luck was involved. He knew them. They were too good.

The third thing that hit him, shortly after that thought and probably as a result of that thought, was the surprise. He had been staring into the face of death: a face that was so familiar to him (given the fact that many thousands of copies of the selfsame face existed and served alongside him and his fellows) that he could have drawn it blindfolded; it was a face that, he would have happily admitted, he would never have expected to see as an enemy. And yet here he was.

Where was here?

He was in a bed. Not a particularly nice bed either in his opinion. It was suspended from the floor by a support strut that looked delicate enough to snap with his fingers, and yet he could sense that it was stronger than it looked. The bed was obviously designed for a humanoid but not for one as - comparatively - short as he. And as he was six feet tall, that was saying something. It was a comfortable but very sparse bed, with a single large, thick but thin-feeling duvet.

The room he and this bed were in was small, cozy, and pristine white. Odd. Then after a moment, he realised where he was. The information did nothing to make him feel better, but he supposed he would have to make do for the moment.

He looked out of the single little window to confirm his suspicion, and it was as he had expected: rain. Lots of rain. More rain than any planet save for this one had a right to have.

Kamino. The planet of the cloners.

He didn't bother exploring the room; there was nothing to explore. Nothing interesting to see. The room was utterly featureless, save for a door, the bed, a window and a lavatory. He wondered briefly why the kaminoans had decided to keep him here. Indeed, why was he alive? He was meant to be dead, wasn't he? Leastways, from the attempt on his life, he reasoned his death must be wanted by someone, although he had no illusions: his own part was insignificant. He was only a target because they all were, and they all were because they were all gone, and only Clones were so efficient, and only Clones had the opportunity, though motive was as of yet a mystery to him.

Why were they all targets in this way? Could it be some Seperatist plot? No. Dooku was dead, and the Clone War was close to being finished. Indeed, many of his friends had spoken of returning home, of returning to the lives they had lived. He had no such dreams. He was under no illusions about this either.

For good or ill, the Jedi Order was changed forever by the wars.

Some might call that a bad thing, might say that they had lost something. He disagreed. The only thing they had lost were their illusions. They were warriors. Maybe they were warriors who fought for noble causes, but they were still warriors. Actually, he didn't mind the thought. The "Will of the Force" that his fellow Jedi were always talking about had seemingly demanded that they fight for justice. Sometimes, the Jedi were the only ones who seemed to fight for justice. That was a sobering thought. He ignored it for the time being.

Other questions had to be asked.

His clothes - such as they were - were a simple grey jumpsuit, probably adapted from clone gear. There was no sign of his traditional robes, nor of his lightsabre, which made him more than a little suspicious, but more importantly, it made him afraid. A Jedi knight was somehow... less without the weapon that was their signature.

Not that he was defenceless without it: a quick test showed that the Force was still with him, as the bed strut creaked at his subtle nudge.

He decided to check himself over: it was the best option. He seemed to be in good health save for a single mark - small and round - on his arm. He studied it: it looked like a hypodermic device mark, though Jedi rarely used such devices. He considered what it might mean for a moment, before consigning it to "mysteries to solve later", his personal mental queue which left little room for non essential thought and precious little room for thoughts irrelevant to the now. Sometimes, it was the only way he could survive, ever since...

No. Don't think about that.

Too late; thoughts of her, simultaneously wonderful, painful, beautiful and tragic moments and feelings, permeated through his mind like a lightning bolt. The pain, raw and fresh and cruel, hit him with the force of a battlecruiser at hyperspace velocity. He sighed. He knew he would never be free of her, that she would permeate his memory until the day he joined with the Force, but that didn't mean he had to like it. He wanted to forget.

And disrespect her memory.

No, he didn't want to forget, not really. The memories washed over him for a moment more before, finally, he decided to force them away. He had to think.

He sighed. He knew his best choice for such thinking was to sit down and meditate - no other choice was open to him. He closed his eyes, and began.


"Do you think he suspects, yet?" the scientist asked. Her voice was cold and high, and yet still in some part of her self she found she cared for the man in the room she and the politician were observing.

"It is a possibility," the politician conceded. "But isn't that why we chose him? If he begins to suspect, it merely proves what we knew. He was the right choice. The more in touch with the Force he is, the better for our plan."

The scientist nodded thoughtfully. To look at the human Jedi in the little room, now deep in his meditations, one could not guess the extensive modifications his genome had undergone, but they were there. She knew they were there. All of the modifications were personally created, customised and installed by her.

"His record may not be the best," the politician continued, reaffirming an old argument, "but it makes him perfect for the -"

"You sound," the scientist interrupted, "as if you are trying to convince yourself."

The politician looked at her in surprise and mild annoyance. She continued undaunted. "It isn't me you're trying to convince. The Prime Minister may yet deny permission to go ahead."

"He may," the politician concurred with a nod of his head, "but that will only deny us funding which we can replace and government support which we do not need." He focused his small eyes on the still-meditating Jedi. "This plan is guaranteed to work. It has to."

"It does," agreed the scientist gravely. "For the sake of the galaxy."