Put the Past Behind II: Tatooine Part I

By Season Irwin and Ginna Wilcoxen

Octavia was grateful when the time came to turn in. The sun and heat of
Tatooine was more than she was prepared for. She sat down on the side of
the bed and cleared her mind before she laid down to sleep.


Dark hunters came out of the alley, blasters drawn. Octavia reached for
her saber only to discover it was no longer there. Palpatine exited the
alley and smiled at her. "Nothing you experience is real unless I state
it is."

"No, we escaped." Octavia stated firmly. "We're free of you."

"Are you?" Raven Palpatine's image joined her father's. "Are you so sure?
  How many different realities have you experienced? Do you really think
we would let Jedi gain their freedom?"

Octavia woke wiping the sweat from her face.  Glancing around the room,
she grabbed her robe and walked out into the night air. The cold dryness
hit her like a wall.

First it was visions of her grandfather's past that haunted her, made it
impossible for her to remain on the Electra .  Was she destined to be
haunted by the memories of her time  on  Zoron?

"Your grandfather was a strong man, but you are weak, passive and

The phrase rang in Octavia's memory as she stared at the night sky.  It
seemed like everyone knew what her destiny was to be.  If it wasn't her
grandfather, it was the Emperor, and now it seemed even Psylocke's mother
knew what she would do; what she would become.

Octavia lowered her head trying to clear her thoughts. The only person
who seemed to leave her future in her hands was Master Skywalker, yet he
chose to bring her back to this planet.  His home yes, but it was also
the scene of death her first killâ^À¦her first murder...

"I assure you, the nightmare will end, Jedi Jinn."  Palpatine sauntered
over toward the bench and sat down next to her. "You need to know -- I
*want* you alive, and well-trained - be it Jedi or Sith. We will meet
again, but not in a dream....no....the next time I see you, you will be a
fully trained Jedi Knight, Octavia Syn Jinn...and of course, I will turn
you to the *Dark Side*...or you will die dueling my apprentice in the
throne room. It is unavoidable, my dear--and it will be my finest hour."

Emperor Palpatine's words rang in Octavia's ears. She refused to believe
that his words were true, yet there was truth in his words.  She only had
to figure out which part. Octavia glanced back at the house and the
surrounding area.  Even though it was open area she felt cagedâ^À¦penned

'Get control,' she told herself.  'It was a dreamâ^À¦a nightmare.'

Octavia found herself in front of the garage area where they had parked
the speeder for the night. Entering the dark area, she stared at the
speeder.  She could go for open areaâ^À¦ the controls were not that
difficult to handle or to program. Giving in to the need to get away, to
move, Octavia piloted the speeder away from the homestead and away from
Luke Skywalker. She should have never come here.  Once freed she should
have run as far as she could. Should have left the Force behind; the
thoughts of the Emperor and his desires..should have left everything

As quickly as the thoughts came Octavia pushed them aside.  That was the
way they wanted her to think. The Emperor would be happy if she gave up,
if she ran away. No, she wouldn't do that.  She would stand her ground.
 But she needed time to think, time to realize her own personal goals.

Stopping the speeder out in the open desert, Octavia studied the dark sky
and the sand that seemed to stretch out forever. Because the temperature
was dropping, Octavia pulled her robe around her. Enjoying the lack of
buildings and of people, she pushed back memories of moments in a Force
damped cell before the rescue.

Opening her eyes, she watched as the sand began to pick up with the wind,
blurring the landscape. A sandstorm.  She had read about them on the way
here.  But it did nothing to prepare her for the strength of one
beginning to form. Pulling the bubble over the speeder Octavia calmed
herself as she looked at the instruments: they weren't responding
properly.  It had to be interference from the storm.

Sitting back in pilot's seat Octavia ran the course through her mind.
 She couldn't be more than a couple of miles out from the old burned out
homestead; reaching out with the Force, Octavia felt the rage of the
storm. The strength in the winds awed and frightened her at the same
time. What was she thinking of when she left?  How could she have acted
so impulsively?

'Fear cripples you,' she repeated to herself.  Reaching over, she grabbed
the goggles that Luke had made sure she'd brought. Octavia put them on
and pulled her robe tighter around her. She knew she would have to remain
calm and control her breathing; she knew she should be safe here for a
while as long as not too much sand drifted through the cracks.  A Jedi
was supposed to act responsibly and watch out for those they were with,
and what she had done was reckless and might have put Luke in possible

Sitting there, Octavia allowed her mind to wander, tried to come to terms
with the hidden anger that was there. She knew she needed to move forward
to get over the bitterness, and over the fear that threatened to take
control of her. What would her father or her grandfather have done? 'They
wouldn't have run away, that is for sure,' she admonished herself. 'When
will you learn to take responsibility for yourself?'

Reaching out Octavia found comfort in the Force, using it to slow her
breathing down. The sand blowing into the speeder forced Octavia to cover
her mouth with her robes. The winds from the storm raged around her.  The
grains pelting the speeder sounded like they would break the bubble.
Octavia forced herself to think of her father and the happier times she
had with him. Force, how she missed him. The lessons he had taught her
came to the surface: the way she needed to rely on the Force, to let it
guide her. Soon it would be dawn, she realized, and then she could see
what the damage to the speeder was, and then face Luke and take
responsibility for her actions.

Octavia sat there listening to the storm finally begin to calm down. She
had listened to it rage during the night, feeling its different pitches.
She found herself jumping when the bubble suddenly popped open. "Master

Luke was kneeling on the sand that was piled up around the bottom half of
the speeder. "I forgot to warn you about the sand storms we have around
here can get kind of...severe," he stated wanly.

"I seemed to have forgotten what I studied," Octavia answered slowly.
"I've caused quite a bit of trouble."

"The speeder engines are buried and we'll need to clear them before we
continue on our journey." Luke moved his hand, using the Force, to start
clearing the sand from the speeder. Octavia climbed out of the speeder
and joined him. It still took quite a while for the two of them to free
the speeder. Once that was done Octavia checked out the mechanics, making
sure that the speeder would operate and that the sand didn't do any
permanent damage.

Octavia watched Luke once the speeder was operational once again; she
waited for the lecture and the disappointment. It made her nervous that
Luke had remained quiet so far. "I shouldn't have left without letting
you know," she blurted suddenly.

"You could have used the Force to lead you back to the farm." Luke stated
calmly, giving her a quizzical look out of the sides of his eyes.  It was
hard to tell if he was angry.  He did seem to be very calm and relaxed.

"I didn'tâ^À¦I didn't trust my ability to use the Force," Octavia
answered. "I allowed my fear and uncertainty to freeze my actions." She
leaned against the speeder. "Perhaps Raven Palpatine was right, I'm too

"Why did she say that?"

"Because we allowedâ^À¦I allowed myself to be led blindly through the VR
dreams. I never fought back, never resisted."

"How were you to know they were only dreams? And a Jedi doesn't attack
just to attack. Raven Palpatine may never learn what a Jedi is really all
about."  Luke shook his head.

"At times, I wonder if I understand." Octavia looked at Luke. "If it
wasn't for Master D'med and Medenna I don't know if I would have

"The Light is strong in you, Octavia; you would have resisted else they
wouldn't have pushed so hard to have you turn."

Octavia let out a breath and lowered her head. "I know, somewhere deep
inside I know. Now, what do we do?"

"We continue forward," Luke answered. "But to do so, we need to leave the
past behind."  He smiled kindly at her.

Octavia fell silent thinking on Luke's words. "And to be honest about
what we feel," she replied. "I don't want to fail."

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