Thank you to the 6 people who reviewed the last chapter and I hope that you like this chapter. Also, though I probably should have done this at the beginning of the story, for the alternate dimension Anakins, Ahsokas and Obi-Wans, I am now going to refer to them by their last names so as to not confuse them. Reviews, as always, are much appreciated.
"I discovered an article written by Quinlan Vos, a graduate of the University of Corsucant. Though the article never said it, I am assuming that the only way to leave an alternate dimension would be to leave the same way you entered it through a black hole. If you survived the journey through the black hole then you are likely to end up in an alternate dimension or so the article states," Ventress said through the comm.
"How can we be sure this article is true?" Maul asked coolly lifting his gaze from the article he was currently reading on the datapad in his hand. "It sounds like utter rubbish to me."
"Well, there are three people who are identical in terms of their Force signatures to three others and yet they are also different. This article supports that possibility," Ventress snapped.
"If there is a way to enter another dimension then we must discover it," Sidious said. "To be able to extend the influence of the dark side to other dimensions who have not yet opened their eyes to the dark side's influence, it would make things worthwhile."
"We do not know if we can travel to other dimensions though," Maul said. "How do we know traveling through a black hole will truly bring us to another dimension? It all seems to be based on whether we survive the journey or not and that is not a guarantee."
"Three have already succeeded in that," Sidious said eyes closed as he stood on the bridge of the Vengeance. Though his eyes were closed, Maul knew that he was aware of everything that was going on, on the bridge. The Dathomirian Zabrak also got the feeling that his master wasn't letting the events on the bridge distract him from his thoughts and he, obviously, was deep in thought.
Finally, after several long moments Sidious's eyes opened. "The Force is clouded and I cannot see through it as if it was thick smoke and yet I felt something. These three newcomers, the ones who have identical Force signature to three others in this galaxy, I must know more about them. They pose a danger, especially the one with a signature identical to Skywalker's, but they are also the key. There is something more at play here, something that I cannot see. It is just beyond my reach and yet it is there. I just do not know what it is."
Sidious turned his gaze to Maul and Ventress's hologram. "I want these three newcomers," he said. "If t is true that the only way to leave an alternate dimension is to leave the same way you entered it, and if these three newcomers entered through a black hole, then that would be the ideal place to stage an ambush and capture them. That is what you two must do. You two must find and capture these three newcomers. Bring them to me alive."
"Yes my lord. How will we know if we have the right ones though?" Ventress asked.
"You will know. The one with the signature identical to Skywalker is, based on Ventress's report, different from Skywalker, very different. If you find the Skywalker that is not like the one we're used to then his companions, no doubt, will not be far behind him."
"Yes my lord."
"Yes my lord."
"Ventress, you're dismissed. I will contact you again when it is time to stage the ambush. Maul, I want a report on your mission."
Ventress bowed and her hologram disappeared.
Maul also bowed. "It would appear that the Jedi have been staying a step ahead of us," he said. "I went to Korriban, just as you asked master, but the holocron you sent me to find wasn't there. I believe the Jedi may have already gotten to it."
Sidious's eyes filled with anger but his voice stayed calm as he said, "That is rather unfortunate. How the Jedi keep staying ahead of us is a mystery but I will figure it out eventually. Let us focus on the ambush before we do anything else."
The Jedi had decided on escorting Anakin, Obi-Wan and Ahsoka to the black hole with two Republic Star Destroyers, which, they hoped, would be enough to repel the Separatists should Sidious and Maul decide to attack. After a brief discussion, it was decided that the three dimension travelers would travel onboard the Redeemer and, when they were near the black hole, they would leave on the Twilight. That way they would be safe most of the way should the Separatists attack.
While Anakin wanted to fight if the Separatists did attack, he was beginning to understand that their priority was getting back to their own dimension. He didn't want to spend too long away from their own dimension for fear that Padmé might guess that he had been killed in action. He didn't want that to happen.
As he sat, thinking, in the quarters the Jedi had given them onboard the Redeemer, he was half-aware of Skywalker sitting down beside him. It was awkward to have his alternate dimension self sit beside him; they were identical in appearance, in their presence in the Force and in parts of their personality and yet parts of them differed greatly.
"I sense longing within you," Skywalker said.
Anakin looked at his alternate dimension self but said nothing.
"You miss someone…a lot," Skywalker added.
Anakin was silent. "Have you ever met Queen Amidala?" he asked.
Skywalker shook his head. "I heard from my master before the Battle of Naboo that she was a natural, very compassionate leader even though she was really young when she took the throne on Naboo."
Anakin sighed inwardly. That meant that his alternate dimension self wouldn't understand. He didn't know Padmé as well as Anakin did in the dimension he came from.
"You miss the Amidala of your dimension, don't you?" Skywalker asked.
Anakin hesitated although he saw a gleam of understanding in his alternate dimension self's eyes. He doesn't know Padmé in this dimension so how would he understand? He thought.
Skywalker either knew what he was thinking or he was anticipating that type of question. "You know, not long ago, I was in the same boat as you. Back when Master Gallia and I were in the Outer Rim during the first couple of years of the war, I missed Coruscant and I missed someone as well. I never let on that I was feeling that way but Master Gallia sensed it and asked me if I wanted to talk with her about it. At first, I was reluctant but then I finally told her that I missed someone I cared about a lot. I expected her to lecture me on letting go of attachments but she didn't. She was very understanding."
"Why are you telling me this?" Anakin asked.
"Because I can sense that you are missing someone but also feel guilty. I don't know why that is but I'm telling you this because maybe talking about this with someone you trust will help you with that guilt you're feeling."
Anakin was silent. "Who was it?"
That was definitely not something Anakin would say but he decided saying anything about it. "Who did you miss during those first few years of the war? Or am I being too nosy?"
Skywalker smiled. "That is something we have in common. Master Gallia always commented that I was too nosy," he said. "It was Barriss Offee." Sadness crept into his tone of voice.
"Something happened didn't it?"
He nodded. "She was killed a couple of years ago. I've let it go but I still miss her. I think I will always miss her but I'm not letting the grief control me."
"Was it hard?" Anakin asked.
Skywalker nodded. "Yes it was and it took me some time. Talking with Master Gallia helped a lot. Though I was raised by the Jedi since I was three, controlling my emotions is still a trial."
"I have that problem all the time," Anakin admitted. He felt comfortable talking with Skywalker; it was as if he was talking to a part of himself that he didn't know, what he would have ended up being like had something in the past occurred differently if what Obi-Wan read about alternate dimensions was correct.
Anakin grimaced. "Yes so Obi-Wan keeps telling me but I don't really like meditating."
Skywalker grinned. "Another thing we have in common. Apparently, though we are different, we are still alike."
Anakin smiled before he turned his gaze to the portholes at the bluish-white flashes of hyperspace. "So you really think I should talk to someone I trust about Padmé?" he asked.
"I don't know who I can trust enough to talk to about Padmé though."
His alternate dimension self looked incredulous. "Are you blind?" he asked.
Anakin looked at his alternate dimension self. "No, why do you say that?" he asked startled by Skywalker's words.
"Because you are, obviously, oblivious to the fact that the person you can talk to has been beneath your nose this entire time. I knew the Obi-Wan of this dimension before he was killed, Anakin, and I trusted him more than anyone, more than Master Gallia. When he was killed, I was just as devastated as when Barriss was killed. Despite being raised to not form attachments with anyone, Obi-Wan was like a brother to me. Obviously, that has not changed in your dimension."
"I can't tell him. He'll tell the Jedi Council when we get back to our dimension."
"Do you honestly believe that, Anakin? Don't you trust him?"
"I trust him with my life."
"Then why won't you trust him enough to tell him about Padmé?"
Anakin hesitated. That was actually a good question. "I don't know," he said quietly.
"I suggest you tell him," Skywalker said.
Anakin smiled a little. "It's awkward that I'm getting advice from myself," he said.
Skywalker laughed. "It is, isn't it? Then again, it is also awkward that there are two of us," he said.
"Yes, it is." The two of them chuckled.
Obi-Wan was meditating in his room when a knock sounded at his door. "Come in," he called pulling himself from his meditative trance as the door opened and Anakin made his way into the room.
"Master, I was hoping we could talk," he said as the door closed behind him.
Anakin sat down on the bed beside Obi-Wan and hesitated. "I just…do you trust me, master?"
"What gave you the idea that I didn't? I love you, Anakin. I wasn't just saying that onboard the Twilight to hear myself talk. And I trust you with my life."
"I'm just…I wanted to tell you something but I…but I don't know…" he broke off.
Obi-Wan had a feeling he knew of what was coming. "Just be straightforward with it, since being straightforward has always been your strong suit, and tell me," he said.
Anakin didn't meet his gaze. "I just…I wanted you to know that…I broke the Jedi Code, master. Soon after the Battle of Geonosis, Senator Amidala and I got married," he said finally.
Obi-Wan was not at all surprised. He really wasn't. It wasn't obvious that this was true but there were subtle hints that pointed at it being true. It was those little hints that allowed Obi-Wan to figure out the truth long before Anakin admitted it to him. He admitted to himself that he was a little hurt that Anakin didn't come to him sooner about this but he could understand why Anakin didn't.
"You don't seem surprised, master." Anakin still avoided his gaze but Obi-Wan could hear the confusion in his voice.
"Oh I'm not. It wasn't that hard to put two and two together, Anakin. I've always known you and Padmé loved each other to the point that the two of you got married. I'm not exactly blind. There were so many clear hints that led to the same conclusion."
Anakin turned to look at him the bewilderment in his voice glittered in his eyes. "But you never told the Jedi Council?"'
"To do so would be a betrayal, Anakin, and I would never betray you like that. You are happy with her and I couldn't take that away from you. Besides, it would be hypocritical of me to tell anyone about your love for Padmé and yet not tell them about the fact that I love you like a brother."
Anakin looked surprised. "So you won't tell the Council when we get back?"
"No I will not."
"Thank you, master."' Obi-Wan could hear the worry in his brother's voice as if he feared they would never return to their own dimension.
"We'll get back to our own dimension in due time, Anakin," he said quietly.
"I hope so, master, I hope so."
Ahsoka closed her eyes as she drifted off into the peace of a meditative trance. They had at least three days of travel to go through before they would reach the black hole and there was no telling if the Separatists would be waiting for them when they arrived. It seemed likely and Ahsoka had to wonder what the battle would be like.
She also wondered how many dimensions they would have to travel through before they reach their own dimension. She felt out of place in these dimensions; dimensions massively different from their own.
Except for the constant, she thought. She was curious as to what the constant was and yet she knew she wouldn't know until they've traveled through many dimensions. If they went back to their own dimension after the visit to this one then they would never learn of what the constant is.
Besides, if what Obi-Wan found about dimension travel was true then they wouldn't go back to their own dimension right away. They would travel through many dimensions and, perhaps, Ahsoka could figure out what the constant was.
She was unsure why she started getting curious when Vos's article, Yoda and Windu told them about the constant but she was curious. It would be good knowledge to know especially since whatever the constant is seemed to affect each dimension differently. Knowing what the constant was might help explain why certain things in the dimension Ahsoka, her master and her master's master came from happened or didn't happen.
It would also give her something to do while in each dimension they would be traveling to while they tried to get back to the black hole.
If the Force was the one that allowed us to survive the trip through the black hole the first time then doesn't that mean it's the will of the Force that we travel through these dimensions? If that's so then I doubt the Force would let us leave until we did whatever it wanted us to do, the reason why it sent us to these other dimensions, she thought.
Ahsoka pulled herself from her meditative trance before opening her eyes to find her master standing in the doorway. "Yes master?" she said.
"We're here," Anakin said. "And it doesn't look like the Separatists are here."
"Let's hope we can get out of here before they show up."
Anakin nodded in agreement. Ahsoka stood up before following her master as he led the way toward the bridge of the Redeemer. Until they reached the desired distance from the black hole, Skywalker and Gallia suggested that they stay on the bridge. That way they would know of what they were heading into before they headed into it.
Ahsoka found herself hoping the Separatists wouldn't show up.
Sadly, hoping wasn't enough.
A/n what do you think?
Blaze: the next chapter might be the last chapter of this part, or it might be the second to last chapter of this part
Darth: it depends on how long the next chapter ends up being
Blaze: it will definitely be longer than this chapter. This chapter was more a filler chapter
Darth: I liked it though
Anakin: so did I
Obi-Wan: so did I
Maul: I was barely in it so it sucked!
Obi-Wan: (stabs Maul with spear)
Anakin: (raises eyebrow) where did you get that spear?
Obi-Wan: Mace had one that he let me borrow
Mace: OBI-WAN, WHERE IS MY SPEAR?
Obi-Wan: okay, so I may not have asked permission beforehand (hops into Mace's Mustang and takes off)
Mace: Now you take my Mustang too? Damn you (leaps into his other Mustang and chases after Obi-Wan)
Blaze: (chuckles) please review and I will post chapter 6 as soon as I possibly can but I doubt it will be anytime soon.