This story occured a few years brfore the first movie. The girl walked along the path as if she was late. She had black hair and wore a green dress. She passed by the young man on a park bench without giving him a glance. Torin watched her move away. She was pretty, but she was not the one. Not the dark haired girl who for the last month had filled his dreams. He could not escape her image, or the feeling that he would soon find her. Or maybe she'd find him. It was almost enough to make him believe in the Force. But that was a myth, even if his mother never seemed to believe herself when she told him not to pay any attention to it. Another girl approached, but she was a blonde and working class. The girl in the dream was clearly a brunette, and somehow he knew, noble. Of course she didn't really exist, but looking for her was a good excuse to sit in the park and watch girls. And that is twenty year old minor nobles do on lazy summer afternoons. "I thought I'd find you here, Tor." Tor turned, startled. The newcomer was a man about fifty. He had a file in his hand. "Seen any you like?" "No, Father, they're all wrong." Sir Logan Steelas sat down next to his son. "This has been the best place in town to watch girls since your grandfather was your age." "I know." "What did you mean they're all wrong?" Torin looked at his father. "There is a girl whose face is in my dreams. None of these is her." He waved his hand at the passing people. "Who is she?" Tor noticed a worried look cross Logan's face. "I have no idea." "Can your hunt wait?" "Yes, why." "We are going to have to shut down for a while." "Why?" "Koross is coming," He handed Tor a page from the file. Tor looked at the page. It was a Rebel intelligence report. This was the first one he'd seen that mentioned anyone as grand as Lord Koross Mathem, the Imperial Regent in Zoron Sector. "So, what does that have to do with us? He's a high level paper pusher. He won't spend his time chasing us." "Tor, the Sith are not paper pushers. Koross wouldn't come to Torion without a reason. That reason could be us. And he's not alone. He brought his daughter with him." Logan passed over another sheet. This time the picture was of a dark haired girl who somehow seemed familiar. "that makes two of them." The name on the file was Cassandra. "Dad, you're only the Rebel leader on this planet. Torion is not that important." What was his father not telling him? Something about Koross worried Logan, personally. Tor decided to ask Mother when he saw her. Logan stood up. "Come, we need to go home." Torin stood and handed back the files. Neither of them noticed him slip Cassandra's picture into his pocket. As they walked up the street toward the Steelas compound Torin couldn't shake the feeling that something was seriously wrong. When they reached the gate, he acted without thinking. Suddenly his blaster was in his hand and he was shooting. The first stormtrooper was dead. The second never saw them. By the time either his father or the other troopers could do anything the third was down. And then it was over. They'd killed five Imperials. They heard more shooting inside the house. The door was open. They heard a child scream and went in. Again Torin killed stormtroopers before they saw him. These had been about to kill Tarna. She wrapped her five year old arms around Logan's leg, crying. "Tor, take your sister and get out of here." "But, Father?" "Do as I say. I'm going to look for Willa, Loric and your mother. Now go." Torin looked at his father for the last time. Then he scooped up his sister and ran. "Daddy," Tarna sobbed as he crossed the garden. The five stormtroopers examining the bodies at the gate died where they stood and Torin and his sister were gone. Cassandra was bored. She did not even pretend to be interested in Governor Arricar's report on how he was putting an end to the Rebel Alliance locally. Sandy touched his mind. As she suspected he was trying to snow her father. "Good thing for him Father isn't really here to inspect his operation." At the end of the table Sarah Oris, Koross' secretary was taking notes. Sandy could tell she didn't think this meeting mattered. Sandy got up from the table and walked to the window, her black cape billowing behind her. The three junior officers she passed moved nervously out of her way. She looked at each in turn. None was the boy in her dream. Good thing too, they were all hopelessly afraid of her. She looked out the window. Loradon appeared to be a modern, sophisticated city, much better than the dump her father had dragged her to last month. Maybe the boy was out there somewhere. For the last month he had haunted her dreams. The Force was trying to tell her something, but what? Well whatever it was she decided she was going to find him. She spread the tendrils of her mind over the city, looking for him. Somewhere on the northern edge of Loradon the Force moved. She focused on it. For a moment she heard a blaster, then she felt pain and triumph. Then it was over. "Did you feel it, Lass?" "Yes, Father." She looked into the room. Arricar looked like he'd been stopped in mid sentence. "Feel what, my lord?" "See if you can track him." Koross ignored the governor. Without answering Sandy turned her mind back to the Force trace. She hunted for five minutes. She found traces, they seemed familiar. "I lost him." She returned to the office. "Lost what?" Arricar looked puzzled. "A Force trace." Koross answered him without looking. "Did you learn anything, Lass?" He shifted into Sitha. "I think its a boy," she replied in the same language, "and he seems familiar somehow. I don't understand it." "Good, keep looking." "This is why we are here," Sandy thought. "Father is looking for this boy." Half an hour later they were interrupted. Arricar's secretary called. "Captain Joric is here, sir." "Send him right in." He turned back to the Regent. "Joric is about to report the end of the Rebels on Torion, my lord." "I doubt it." Koross replied. A captain in armor entered, and saluted. "Sir, my lord, my lady." "Your report, Captain," Arricar sounded impatient. "Yes, sir. As you ordered, my company raided the Steelas Compound." "Logan Steelas is the Rebel leader on Torion," Arricar interrupted, "this should end it locally." "I've never heard of that working." Koross answered him. "Continue, Captain." "Yes, my lord. We terminated Logan Steelas and most of his family." "What do you mean most? I ordered you to kill all of them." Arricar was losing his cool. "One of his sons, Torin we think, managed to shoot his way out. He killed fourteen of my men." "So one of the family escaped?" Sandy moved closer. Finally this was getting interesting. "Two, the little girl is missing too." Before Arricar could say anything Koross interrupted. "Captain, are you telling me that a teenager, saddled with a five year old shot it out with a squad of stormtoopers and won?" "Yes, my lord." Koross stood up. "We are going to inspect this house. Come, Lass." He didn't look happy. The front of the Steelas house was full of bodies, all stormtoopers. Cassandra scanned the area for the Force and found it. Its was the same as she had felt from the governor's office. It still seemed familiar, and seductive. "Come, Lass, what we need to see is inside." Sandy followed her father into the house, Arricar and Oris tagging along. There were more dead troopers in the hall. Sandy knelt and examined one. One shot, though the heart. "This boy has talent," she thought. At the top of the stairs they found a teenage girl, dead. "Get something to cover her," Koross said to a junior officer. Koross led them into the master bedroom. There were seven bodies, a man, a woman and five troopers. The lieutenant who was waiting in the room addressed the governor, "Here are Logan and Maia Steelas, sir." He gave the woman a kick and flew across the room, hitting the wall hard. "Get out," Koross ordered. The officer got up and left. "These people are important to Father," Sandy thought. "Why?" He's not happy they're dead." "You see, my lord...," the governor began. Koross glared at him. "Sarah." "Yes, my lord." 'I want the bodies prepared for shipment to Zoron. Use the best funeral home in town. Do the same with all their possessions. Make sure the missing children's things are on the Warrior tonight." "Yes, my lord." The secretary left the room. "What?" "This is not your concern, Arricar." "Yes, my lord." He looked confused. Koross sifted to Sitha. "Lass, set up an ambush at the main concourse of the spaceport. The boy will be along at noon tomorrow. I want him and his sister unhurt." "Yes Father." Sandy followed Sarah from the room. Sandy was sitting in a tree at the entrance to the spaceport. She had two squads of stormtroopers in place. Now all she could do was wait. The Force easily hid her from the crowd. She watched her father and Arricar arrive with their entourage. She waved at Koross. Five minutes later she saw him, the boy in her dreams. He was walking toward the spaceport, leading a little girl by the hand. "Is that the boy father wants?" She touched him with the Force. The Force was there, strong but untrained. Contact with his mind felt good. The boy turned and looked right into her eyes. She felt his will push though her Force cloak, but it held. He turned away, and continued into the spaceport. Sandy dropped from the tree and followed. Torin led Tarna toward the spaceport. He intended to stowaway on a ship. As they came into sight of the front door he suddenly had the feeling he was being watched. He looked around. No one was paying attention to them. The feeling was still there. It felt good. For a moment the feeling intensified seductively. He looked again. A tree drew his attention. The watcher was there, but he couldn't see anything. Well he had to get Tarna off planet. As he came to the door Torin saw a large Imperial delegation doing something ceremonial. "Good, no one will notice us." When they were half way past the Imperials a man in black stepped out in front of them. "Hello, Lad, good of you to join us." "Koross! Father was right, we must really matter to him, " Torin thought. "Tarna run!" Tor drew and fired at Governor Arricar. The shot deflected away and hit the wall behind him. For two minutes he ducked and shot, trying to kill Arricar. Each time his bullet hit the wall. He took out four stormtroopers. Finally he had Koross in his sights. He fired twice. Both shots stopped in mid air, and dissipated. "No, Lad, you cannot anticipate me." The blaster twisted out of his hand and two troopers grabbed his arms. Sandy followed the boy into the concourse. Her father, the governor and their entourage were going though the nonsense of seeing off a VIP. The boy tried to walk right by them. She smiled. He's got guts." She saw her father step out and stop the boy followed by the beginning of the fight. The little girl ran right at Sandy. Four of Arricar's stormtroopers chased her, shooting. Sandy put a Force shield behind her and waited. When the girl reached her Sandy wrapped an arm around her waist and dropped her own cloak. The girl kicked and screamed, but Sandy ignored that. The first trooper came up to Sandy. "Put her down and I'll kill her, my lady." Sandy waved her free hand and slammed him into a wall. Don't frighten the child." Sandy walked toward the main group. The other troopers watched her nervously. Torin was caught. There was no way to deny it. He looked Koross in the eye. "Okay, you have me. Kill me and get it over with." "We will, Torin Steelas." He raised his blaster, which jumped out of his hand. "What?" "Arricar, this is my prisoner, not yours." "Well kill me." "No Lad, I have other plans for you, and your sister." "Tarna escaped." Torin didn't feel very sure. Koross looked off to the side. "No she didn't, did she, Lass." "No Father, I have her." Torin turned and looked into the eyes of the girl in his dream. She had Tarna under her arm, kicking. The girl smiled invitingly at him. "What do you think, Lass?" Koross asked. "He's cute." "Good, I may give him to you." The girl wore Sith black. I think I'd like that." "Take them both to the Warrior." "Yes, Father," she answered. She stepped up and gently touched his cheek. "Come along," her voice was pure seduction. The troopers dragged him after her. Against his will his eyes followed her figure. He wanted her. When Sandy looked into Torin's eyes she was surprised by what she didn't see. There was defiance, anger and a flattering amount of lust, but no fear. Turning him to the Darkside was going to be lots of fun. Tami took one last look at the table. It was covered with everything one needed to feed children, and teenagers; sandwiches, soup, cakes, cookies, pies, fruit, and pizza. Yes this will do just fine. Two of the servants were waiting. Only the guests were missing. The door opened behind her. Good the guests were here. She turned to look. Sandy came though the door carrying a little girl, who she placed on one end of the couch. She was followed by two stormtoopers dragging a teenage boy. "Put him there," Sandy pointed to the middle of the couch. The troopers dropped him and took stations behind him. Sandy walked over to the table and took a cookie. "Hi, Mom." "I see you have them." "Yes." The door opened again and Koross entered. He kissed his wife and dismissed the troopers. Then he sat on a chair opposite Torin. "I must apologize for letting Arricar kill your family. If I had known I would have stopped it." Tami took a chair next to the table. Sandy sat next to Tor, facing him. "Will he be punished?" It was an accusation, not a question. "I promise you justice." "When?" "When you are ready." "I'm ready now." "No, my apprentice, you have much to learn first. When the time comes I will let you kill him." "This is a very fancy cell." "Its not a cell. Its the flag cabin. You're my guest, not my prisoner. I've been looking for you for a long time." "What do you mean looking for me. I'm not important." "Yes, you are." "Why?" "No, Lad. You're not ready for that knowledge yet." Sandy tried to read her father's mind. "No, Lass, I'm not ready to tell you either." Tarna's hunger finally overcame her fear. She got up and walked quickly over to Tami. "Please, maam, may I have a piece of cake?" "Of course dear," Tami stood up. "but let me get you some soup first. Have a sandwich too. And take one to you brother." Tarna thought for a moment and then grabbed two sandwiches and ran back to Torin. Torin took the sandwich Tarna gave him without noticing it. "Lad, do you know what the Force is?" Koross asked. "Its a myth." "No, its quite real. You used it today." "I did not." "Yes you did. I will teach to how to use it properly." "When did I use it?" Against his will Torin was becoming interested. "How do you think you were able to beat a squad of stormtroopers alone? You looked a moment into the future and killed before your enemies knew you were there." Torin didn't have an answer for that. "I'm not going to join you if that is what you're driving at." "You will in time. You can do far more to help the people of Torion from the top of the Empire than the middle of the Alliance." "I will never stop being a rebel." "I will be disappointed if you do." The argument dragged on for several hours while the Warrior left orbit and set course for the sector capital on Zoron. Sandy had had enough politics and philosophy for one night. Her father was quite capable of running this conversation for the rest of the week, and it looked like Torin could too. She decided to change the subject. She leaned forward and placed a finger tip under Tor's chin. His reflexes turned his head toward her and their lips met. She wrapped her arms around him and swung herself into his lap. Tarna watched this process, fascinated, for a moment before Tami took her by the hand. "I think its time for you to go to bed, dear." She led Tarna form the room. "What's going on?" Tarna resisted. "Nothing, dear." It took Torin a moment to realize what had happened. Meanwhile his arms found their way around Sandy. He knew he should be fighting this but mostly he wanted her. The teenage boy easily defeated the rebel in him. Koross watched them for a couple of minutes Then he got up, walked over and looked down at them. "I think I'll let you children get better aquanted." He waved to the servants to follow him and left the room. When they were alone, Sandy rolled out of Torin's lap, stood up, unfastened a couple of buttons of her tunic. Torin watched her. Then she took his hand and led him down the corridor to her room. Tarna had slept all she could. The room Tami had put her in was nice enough, but it wasn't home. She decided to get up. Tor would want to escape from these strange people. Some of her cloths were laid out on the dressing table. She put them on without thinking about where they came from. She opened the door and looked out. The hall was clear. She went and listened at the opposite door. No sound. Quietly she worked her way down the hall toward the living room. She listened at every door. At the third door she heard Torin talking. She opened it and crawled in. Torin was in a room that looked like it belonged to a girl. Why? There were two people on the bed. One was her brother. She heard a girl's voice. Father has plans for them that I think will amuse you." She crawled over to his side and whispered, "Hey, Torin, when do we escape?" "Tarna, what are you doing in here?" "What is it, Tor?" "It's my sister." "Get her out of here, Mother will be furious," Sandy ordered. Tor stood up, grabbed Tarna by the wrists and dumped her on the carpet in the hall. Meanwhile Sandy was diving into her robe. Tarna sat there for a moment. Then she realized that neither her brother nor this girl Cassandra were wearing anything. This was puzzling. She tried the door. It was locked. Two minutes later it opened. Tor and Sandy emerged. He was wearing the pants he'd had the day before. She had on a bathrobe. "When are we escaping,? Why were you in a girl's room? What happened to your clothes?" Tarna was all questions. "We are not escaping. There are many things I need to learn, and this is the place to learn them." Sandy opened the door opposite hers. They found some of Tor's clothes laid out on the bed. "The rest of your things should be in the closets." She led Tarna out of the room. "Hi, Tarna, my name is Sandy. I guess I'm going to be your big sister now." "Willa's my sister." "No, Tarna, Willa's dead." Tor opened the door, now fully dressed. "So are Loric, Mother and Father. This is home now." "Yes, Torin." She cried. When she stopped Sandy took them back to the living room. A servant was setting the table. "Good morning, my lord. Are you and your sister ready for breakfast?" "Yes." It took Torin a moment to accept, my lord.
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