I did it! I finally found inspiration to continue this fanfiction (God bless John Williams' amazing soundtrack). I'd like to thank everyone who has followed, favourited and reviewed politely (focus on the word politely there) because you've encouraged me to continue what I was about to give up on. Enough emotional rambling, back to the story (you may want to reread the last chapter since it's been so long...)
A Fight You're Not Going To Win
The blonde boy charges straight at me, lightsaber blazing as he flies forwards under the harsh sun of Dantooine. I smile and push him backwards, sending him flying back to the place he came from.
"You'll have to do better than that, Evin." I taunt. This is better Jedi training than I could've hoped for. The more frustrated he gets, the more focused he'll have to be on not getting angry. The more he tries to kill me, the more like a Jedi he becomes.
"I don't have to prove myself to you!" He shouts in a way that reminds me of Anakin on Mustafar, sending daggers into my heart.
"Then why do you struggle? Come back to me, Luke. I know you can." I plead as I throw him backwards again. I will not lose another one. He starts to breathe heavier and he cries loudly before I see his hand begin to raise. I flick my wrist up and feel some resistance through the force. He's gotten weaker since I last saw him. It's a shame to see really. So many years of training wasted for him to join the Sith and forget it all. I struggle to remain calm and in that time he gets the advantage and pushes me back a few feet. Kriff. He uses my distraction to leap up again and move forwards slightly. This time, he's using the tactic of patience. Finally, he's learning.
"I lived the first 15 years of my life thinking you were my mother when you were the cause of her death all along." He mutters as if it were the most disgraceful truth he'd ever heard.
"What? I tried to save your mother. Vader betrayed and murdered her in cold blood." The red lightsaber comes back again and I reach for my belt. The cool steel of my lightsaber beckons me. He nods as I grab it. What if I can't beat him? I rely on his human side? That didn't exactly work out well with Anakin. The pressure builds and he leaps again. This time I don't stop him. Every time he swings is nearly unpredictable as the dark side clouds my vision of the future. It takes my complete focus to keep up with him. Have I created my own doom? For the first time in my life, I'm unsure as to whether I'll leave this fight alive. I blink hard and try to regain focus. Panicking will only weaken me. The whooshing and crashing sounds of the lightsaber fight keep me focused on where to block and how to move my body. The battle rages on and I begin to lose my breath. Where is he getting his energy from? He continues to slash at me, hoping that his forceful attacks will break through. However, my form counters his perfectly and so I manage to stay in the battle intact. As time passes, I take note of how much weaker I am. A lightsaber was never my strong suit. I decide to switch it up and so I flick my hand back, sending him flying once more. However this time, he's prepared. He uses the momentum of the throw to fling himself back towards me. I can see his muscles tense as he puts all his power into one last swing. Our lightsabers clash facing each other, eyes and sabers locked. He smiles and twists his arm unpredictably. My arm is gone. I see the hilt of my lightsaber drop to the floor along with my right arm. He stands still in shock. I use the force to grab the lightsaber with my left hand and then I run. I sprint like never before. My legs scream in protest of every step. My feet cry as they hit the ground. Spots appear in my eyes but I continue to run for my life. I was trying to save Luke, but I was too late. Vader has taken away my pride and joy. My legs are kicked out from underneath me and my dead weight smashes into the ground.
"I've been a fool." I hear a voice announce quietly from behind me. A boot rolls me over so I'm lying on my back. I stare into the blue eyes of Luke Skywalker. I reach out and feel his old, warm presence.
"Luke..." I whisper as the pain starts to swell. "My ship... Take me to it... Get me to the medbay..." My voice grows weaker as I try to talk. I feel my weight being picked up from underneath me. I remain conscious. Mostly out of distrust. What if it isn't Luke? I've failed. I've failed as Padmé's friend, I've failed as Luke's aunt, I've failed as Anakin's sister. At the end of it all, I wasn't strong enough. I'm no fool, the loss of the arm I use to wield my lightsaber will be a great loss indeed. I cannot fight without it. However, Luke has returned to me, if only temporarily. By the time we get back to my ship, the pain is becoming unbearable and dull moans of agony escape my dried lips. At this point, a medical droid approaches me and begins work on the repair of damaged tissues around my arm and the replacement of where my arm used to be. Out of the corner of my eye, I see Luke sitting down and picking up my comm.
"This is Luke Skywalker. I have General Xeto with me but she's injured. I've sent you our location. If you wish to take me into custody then so be it." My cracked lips tilt and my expression relaxes into an expression I have not made in a while. My smile eases me gently into a drug-induced sleep. Luke's back.
"I understand that, but the General made her decision that in the inevitable position where she is no longer physically fit to fight, no extra limbs will be provided for her to fight. She made this decision and she was fully aware of it at the time. Besides, young Skywalker, I don't believe you're in any kind of position to be making demands after the kind of stunt you pulled."
"I was too easily manipulated, I understand this. You can't just forbid her from joining the fight. You know this is what she'd want to do!" Luke raises his voice in hopes of his point somehow reaching the older man in a clearer manner. However, this clearly does not work.
"Luke- I mean, Captain Skywalker, you're lucky to be highly regarded enough to be in this meeting right now. Let's just acknowledge that she signed this form to not have any replacement limbs and respect her decisions. Surely, you can understand why she wouldn't want to have anything to do with robotic limbs." Leia steps in to try and defend her brother without patronising him as anyone else in that room would have done.
"I know but-"
"But nothing, Captain Skywalker. Please sit down. This is not the purpose of today's meeting. General Xeto will continue to aid this rebellion from Command Centre or she will leave. It is her decision and we will not begrudge her either way." Quiet rumblings of agreement echo through the large hall. "With that over, we need a new plan of attack to get to Emperor Vader himself..."
Two standard hours later...
"I can't believe they'd imply that I don't know the woman who damn near raised me herself!" Luke shouts, pounding at the punching bag with his fists repeatedly.
"You missed a lot, Luke. Ratha changed without you around. Without you here, she seemed to lose her sense of fight. If it weren't for me insisting on it, we would not be a part of this rebellion. You're going to have to get used to this change in her."
"It's not right. Why wouldn't she want to fight?"
"Not with robotics. She's had bad experiences with robotic limbs and you know this just as well as I do." She scolded him for suggesting it.
"Why are you talking to me right now? I betrayed you and her. Why were you so quick to forgive me?"
"Because I missed you. You fool."