The Sith Empress
by AJ Marks
Jessica made her way with Gaia as they entered the Jedi’s room. It had few items that she could tell belonged to Gaia. She watched as Gaia went though some drawers, pulling out some things and setting a small box on one of the shelves.
“What’s this?” Jessica asked, seeing the intricate patterns on the box as she picked it up and inspected it closer.
“Oh, that, I’m not sure, been in our family for generations,” Gaia replied.
“You haven’t opened it?” Jessica replied. “I’m surprised.”
“Well, it’s not easy, and my mother said it would only open when the time was right, so far no one has been able to open it,” Gaia replied.
“So, no one knows what’s inside,” Jessica replied back to her.
“Not that I’m aware of,” Gaia replied placing some clothing in a bag.
“Looks like it should open right here,” Jessica said, poking the area hearing Gaia chuckle.
“You think we haven’t tried that?” Gaia replied smiling at her. “I’ll leave it here for safe-keeping.”
She reached up to take it from Jessica’s hands when the box suddenly opened startling them both.
“What did you do?” Gaia asked.
“Me, I didn’t do anything,” Jessica said a bit startled herself. She looked inside the box to see two gold rings inside each had a crystal on it. One was a blue color and the other was a green. Lying there the crystals seemed to form one whole piece.
“Pretty,” Gaia said, picking up the smaller one and putting it on and looking at it for several seconds before she picked up the other one and placed it on Jessica’s finger. “Well, how about that.”
Jessica was a bit stunned by what happened and had to agree, the rings were indeed beautiful and yet, they somehow seemed to represent them as well. She had no idea how that could be when a foggy mist seemed to envelop the room. they turned to see two strange figures and Jessica prepared for a fight as Gaia merely took a step forward.
“Its you,” she said, placing her hand in Jessica’s and giving a squeeze as they looked to see two figures before them, one short and one tall as they came more into focus.
“Hah,” the shorter one said, giving the taller one a bump with her hip. “See, I told you.”
“Hurmph,” the taller one stated as the shorter one turned back to them.
“Yes, and you figured this out well,” the shorter one said.
“Who are you?” Jessica said as she noticed they looked a lot like herself and Gaia.
“I am Jedi Master Bri Lightner,” the shorter one said. “And this is my soulmate Xara Darhart.”
“Then I was on the right path,” Gaia said. “Is Xara a Jedi as well?”
“Not at first, I started my training under the Sith, but never became a Sith Lord, wasn’t powerful enough,” Xara said before looking at Jessica. “The Dark Side runs strong in us.”
“I know, but there is something else in my heart now,” Jessica said looking down at Gaia.
“Then our work is done, but yours is just beginning,” Bri said. “Trust in each other and you will not fail.”
With that they faded away leaving them alone in the room.
“That was unusual, that happen to you often?” Jessica asked seeing Gaia nod no.
“Didn’t until I saw a certain black figure here. Was that you?”
“I was part of Desann’s original Shadow troopers,” Jessica stated.
“Then you know where the alley of the Jedi is,” Gaia said suddenly.
“Yes and no,” Jessica replied seeing the confused look. “I was there, but we had no idea where we were going. You were there at the defeat of Tavion.”
“My second experience in combat, and somehow I felt you, or was pulled towards you,” Gaia said deep in thought.
“As much as I felt you looking at me, I was just so focused on what I was doing to noticed,” Jessica said.
“You felt me?” Gaia said, something about the tone indicated this was an important question.
“Well, I don’t normally stare at a place where I don’t see people at first, but I do remember looking before seeing you, and for some reason I knew your eyes were green. Perhaps its time we speak with this Percy.”
“Sounds like a plan,” Gaia replied.
Percy sat down at the desk he usually worked at when the door opened and he looked up to see two people standing there. He was only slightly surprised to see the blonde Jedi standing there after the report he had received. He noticed the taller, dark-haired woman standing beside her who seemed to radiate power which sent chills down his spine.
“Hello Percy,” Gaia said to him giving him a smile.
“Gaia,” Percy replied, the smile seemed to reassure him a bit despite the presence of the other woman, something he should have expected as he went over their relationship history in his mind.
“This is Jessica,” Gaia said to him. “I think it’s time we have a talk with someone who can explain things a bit better.”
Percy considered it all when something else caught his eye and made him smile. He nodded to himself and stood telling them to follow him, leading him to another room where someone else was sitting. Gaia had seen him once before.
“Percy, what are you doing here,” the man said, before looking at the other two, taking a long glance at them and seeing what Percy had seen. “Ah, I see, have a seat.”
Gaia glanced over at Jessica as Percy walked out of the room before sitting down along with Jessica who was remaining quiet for now. Gaia figured she would do most of the talking.
“My name is Frank, and you could consider me the high priest of this organization,” Grank told him.
“What organization,” Jessica asked.
“We do not have an official name, but ever member knows what they are part of,” Frank replied back to him leaning back in his chair.
“Are we members?” Gaia asked taking Jessica’s hand without even thinking about it.
“Yes, yes you are,” he replied back to them. “Then again, I think you already know that.”
“And what type of organization is this?” Gaia asked.
“Everyone who is a member has a soulmate, or had one,” he said to her.
“Soulmates, I like it,” Gaia said.
“You would,” Jessica said turning to the man. “How do you know I didn’t force Gaia here to find out about you? I’m not a nice person.”
Gaia nudged Jessica for that comment before turning back to Frank.
“Simple, you wear the rings,” Frank said to them, pointing to the rings they had found inside the box.
“We could have stolen them?” Jessica said.
“No, these rings are special,” Frank stated, taking his off and handing to them. “Here, put mine on.”
Gaia watched as Jessica shrugged but put it on. The ring was similar but had a brown and blue color which were merged. As Jessica put it on the colors separated.
“The colors only join when worn by the soulmates. Each one is specially made,” Frank said.
“But these are not ours?” Gaia said slightly surprised.
“Yes, they are yours, the joining of a pair of old soulmates,” Frank replied back to them. “The same ring can be used for the same souls, in your case, you have an ancient pair of souls, one of the oldest known, yet so much is unknown about you two. You are souls of the warrior and bard. One, the bard is the light, the warrior is the darkness. A reason we keep an eye on you when you first appear.”
“If we are soulmates, and we have the rings, why trust me with this information, I’m capable of many things,” Jessica said, as Gaia looked over at her but then to Frank.
“Because, while you are surrounded in the darkness, and it is your strength, the bard is your source,” Frank said looking at them both. Gaia gave that some thought.
“I doubt that,” she finally said knowing how much stronger Jessica was.
“I don’t,” Jessica replied back quickly. She paused before speaking again. “When I fought the Sith Lords, there was one where I was losing. I somehow heard you, it was my source to defeat him, I couldn’t say no to that voice.”
“Yes, and I’m sure you would have felt that as well, no matter how far away you were,” Frank said looking at Gaia. “It would have felt like something was slipping away and there was nothing you could do about it.”
Gaia paused then recalled she had felt something like that at the library. “That’s when you became the Sith Lord, I felt the blast of the Dark Side as well,” Gaia said.
“Yes, it was my last test by the spirits,” Jessica said.
Gaia gave it some thougth before looking back at Frank. “Then why live in secret?”
“When Bri and Xara were alive there was a threat against us. If it wasn’t for them we would have been destroyed. During their trial they had a vision. It was then they constructed the box,” Frank said. “They said only their next reincarnation of their souls would be able to open the box, but they had to do it together.”
“That would explain why it opened when we both touched it,” Jessica said.
“So, what are your plans?” Frank asked.
“I think a vacation, and to learn more about this,” Jessica said looking at Gaia, who agreed.
“It is a lot, and we can help,” Frank said.
“I can think of several places we can go,” Gaia said.
“Sounds wonderful,” Jessica replied.
Gaia felt excited to begin this new chapter of her life.
Luke looked over the recruits who were on the training ground. Master Fie-Tel was down there taking charge, something he seemed to excel at, teaching others. There had been several months of peace and quiet and he hoped that would stay. The remaining ships from Darth Rizon’s fleet had been captured or destroyed but no word about Darth Rizon. Rumor was she had been killed, or just left for something else. Luke knew the truth and understood the reasons for it all.
Gaia had been diligent in giving him updates on where she was and what they had been up to. She and Jessica had gone on a vacation and visited several worlds, including her home world to visit Gaia’s family. To Luke it appeared as if they were slowly becoming one and the decision to let her go and been the right one. Gaia might not come back, but she was still a Jedi.
He looked over and spotted two familiar forms coming from the temple slightly shocked to see them. Even at this distance he recognized the blonde and noticed that she was leaning into the taller, dark-haired woman beside her. Even from this distance he could tell they were in love. He had a feeling his lost Jedi was coming home. The biggest problem was Jessica and how she might fit in. He hoped that maybe she might help them out, become a Jedi, but he would not push her.
Kyle, let’s go over and meet our returning Jedi Knight,” Luke said to Kyle standing nearby.
“Returning? What do you mean?” Kyle asked obviously confused. He looked over to see Jessica giving Gaia a twirl and kiss. “Ah, I see, I wonder if Jan would allow me to do that?”
“What do you mean wonder, you two already do that,” Luke said shaking his head.
“Well, yeah, but I meant today,” Kyle replied.
“Great, we already have to warn people about you, now we’ll have to warn them about those two as well,” Luke said moving on and heading towards Gaia.
“Very funny,” Kyle replied but kept up with Luke.
Luke wondered what the future might hold with these two and hoped it was good things.