Gray Jedi Ch. 03byauguy86©
"Ok, here goes..."
Malik concentrated on the stack of rubber mats in front of him, trying his best to imagine them as a person in need of help. As they were dealing with lightning, an inherently uncontrollable force, he had decided using rubber mats would be the safest practice. He placed his hands on top of them, channeling the Force through his body and... nothing. Nothing happened. He tried once more, but still with no success.
"Huh... wonder what that means?" he asked.
"I think it comes down to your state of mind," Serra speculated. "Remember, when you last used Force Lightning, it came as a reflex from your desire to save me, no matter what. You've got to find a way to replicate that feeling."
Focusing once more on the mats, Malik quieted his mind and imagined them as Serra. He heard her labored breathing, saw her bruised body. He began to feel that same sense of desperation he had felt on Coruscant. She was dying, and he was the only chance she had. Either he acts, or she's gone forever. Pressing down with his hands, a tiny electric shock flowed from them and into the rubber mats.
"WOAH!" Malik yelped, falling back onto his ass.
"Malik! You ok?" Serra asked, kneeling down next to him.
"Yeah... yeah, I'm fine. I think that worked."
"We should probably take a break; don't want to push yourself too hard."
"Nah, I'm good. Once more."
Now with far more confidence in what he was doing, Malik practiced for several minutes with channeling Force Lightning. Soon, he was able to provide low-level shocks into the mats with consistency, enough to save most dying persons should their heart need a jump-start. His body was also growing accustomed to the feeling of electricity flowing through it. Should he ever attempt to use a stronger version of Force Lightning, Malik could tell that it would take immense focus and resolve to ensure he was not hurt in the process.
"Incredible..." Serra marveled.
"And all without drawing on the Dark Side," Malik replied with a grin. "You were right. Lightning is just a force of nature. It's how it's used that makes it good or evil. Though I can see how easily drawn to the Dark Side someone who uses this technique could be. It's an incredible amount of power. Using this skill, you can literally hold someone's life in your hands."
"The power to give life... and the power to take it. Still, I know you of all people can be trusted to use it properly," said Serra, kissing him on the cheek.
With a tired sigh, Malik responded, "We should be arriving in the Alderaan system within an hour or so. I'm gonna to take a shower, clear my head from this training session."
Returning to their quarters, Malik stripped off his robes and laid them on the bed before entering the adjoining bathroom. Activating the controls, he increased the water temperature to be as hot as it safely could be. For several minutes, he did nothing but stand there, relaxing under the stream of the shower. All his fear and uncertainty over the last few days began to dissipate; though he did not know what the future held, he knew the role of the Jedi in the galaxy was far from over. As he soaked his blonde hair in the water flow, he heard the sound of the bathroom door opening behind him.
"Serra? Everything ok?"
"Um, yeah. I was just... wondering if I might could join you."
Wow... she sure is forward.
"Uh... I guess, I mean I wouldn't object or anything..." Malik stammered.
"Great!" Serra said with a sweet giggle.
Though Malik couldn't see all the details through the fogged up shower door, the faint outline of Serra stripping out of her clothes was still quite a sight to behold. He gulped in anticipation, remembering well their actions from the night before. As much as he was worried about where their actions might ultimately lead them, he couldn't deny how strong his feelings were for this woman. She meant the world to him, and he would gladly go to the ends of the universe to keep her safe. Soon, Serra opened the shower door and stepped inside, interrupting his thoughts.
"Ooh, you got the temperature perfect..." Serra purred as she stepped under the hot water.
"Yeah, I love it nice and warm."
"Hmm. I bet you do..."
Realizing what he had said, Malik tried to backtrack. "Um, that's not what I meant! I-"
"Shh, Malik you're fine. I was just joking around with you," Serra said, kissing him before he could protest. "You know me, I've got a bit of a mischievous streak. But only for your benefit."
Malik smiled as he took in her breathtaking beauty. She had let her hair down, untying it from her customary pigtails and allowing it to flow down past her armpits. Serra just smiled right back at him as he stared; she didn't mind his attention one bit. Leaning her head back, she wet her hair, creating a stunning vision of eroticism for Malik as the water cascaded down her milky white body. She soon opened her eyes, smiling at seeing him openmouthed.
Serra soon fell into his arms, squeezing him tight and squishing her breasts against his hard chest. They kissed and embraced for what seemed like years, enjoying the simple touches of each other. After a few minutes, she reached over for a bar of soap along the wall and began to rub it against Malik's wet chest, spreading suds over his body. He then took the soap from her and lathered up his hands, beginning to wash her breasts and stomach from top to bottom. Serra enjoyed that a great deal, and began to return the favor by cleaning Malik's hard abs.
Before long, each had made it to the other's pelvic region. Though Malik still explored at his leisure, Serra went for just what she wanted, beginning to stroke his hard cock with her soapy hand. He buckled for a moment, but regained his balance enough to return the favor, slipping his finger into Serra's pussy. She threw her other arm around his neck to steady herself, moaning in pleasure from their actions all the while.
As inexperienced as they both were with their sexuality, they found themselves approaching climax rather fast. Malik braced his hand against the wall of the shower as he drew on his anatomical knowledge and found Serra's clit, her moans now becoming screams of ecstasy. She in turn increased the speed of her pumps, jerking his cock with everything she had. Somehow, they managed to remain standing throughout this entire ordeal, though neither knew how. After several minutes of their feverish actions, the couple climaxed together, coating each other's hands in their respective juices. They said nothing, simply resting in a soft hug for some time after.
"Wow... holy shit, Malik."
"Someone's got herself a little potty mouth," he chuckled in reply.
"Whatcha gonna do about it? Tell on me to the Council?" she teased back.
After a long, passionate kiss, he said, "Not on your life."
Serra grinned a huge grin, gazing deep into his eyes. To Malik, she seemed to want to say something, but couldn't bring herself to say so. As she opened her mouth and took a breath in, the ship alerted them of their arrival at the Alderaan system. Though she looked disappointed for a moment, Malik was unsure what about. He dismissed it as she exited the shower first, drying off with a nearby towel. Once they had dressed, they took their seats in the cockpit.
"Ok, cutting to sub-light engines," Serra said.
The ship decelerated with a lurch, and the pair activated their cloaking systems, prepared in the event they encountered any Imperial ships. Soon, the planet Alderaan itself began to grow large ahead of them. From the cockpit, they could see the beautiful mountains and seas dotting the surface of the planet; it was a wondrous sight to behold.
"Wow... incredible. Way different than Coruscant," Serra marveled.
"Oh yeah, I forgot you've never been here before. Every city they've built is designed to complement the surrounding environment, rather than impede it. Look, there's the Royal Palace, where the Organa family lives. We'll land on the outskirts and try to make our way there on foot. No need to attract unwanted attention."
The Jedi soon found a wooded area at the foot of the mountain containing the palace, parking the ship in the midst of a tree-covered clearing. This provided an easy spot within which to hide their ship without having to engage the cloaking systems. After each gathered a bag of supplies, they disembarked the ship to inspect the area.
"Wow... so calm and peaceful," Serra remarked.
"Yeah, I've always loved coming here."
The pair turned to see a group of men in light blue uniforms approaching, each armed with force pikes. Malik heard another group moving in behind them, surrounding the two Jedi. Though Serra was on edge, Malik knew better than to let his anxiety get the best of him.
"Officers. How did you manage to find us so quickly?" he asked calmly.
Their leader replied, "This is Alderaan, son. Do you really think we wouldn't have sensors installed to detect any disturbances to our ecosystems?"
Smiling, Malik nodded in understanding. "I'll cut right to the chase, officers. We need to meet with Senator Organa right away."
"Fine. Turn around, hands behind your backs."
Serra looked worried at this proposition, but Malik squeezed her hand. "It'll be just fine, Serra. Don't worry."
A short time later, the pair had been escorted to a luxurious receiving room in the palace, adorned with comfortable chairs and sofas. After standing in silence for a few minutes, the door on the opposite side of the room opened, revealing a tall, elegant man with a look of quiet confidence in his eyes.
"Well, well, well... it is good to see that there are more survivors of Order 66," the man said. "Lieutenant, really? Binders? That is quite unnecessary; please release them. You may leave us in peace."
"Of course, Senator."
"Please, sit. I apologize for my guards, but they are rather cautious nowadays with the rise of the Empire."
Now free of their restraints, the Jedi moved over to a sofa seated across from the man, a small table between them.
"Senator Bail Organa, I presume?" Serra asked.
"Yes, indeed," he replied with a grin.
"Senator, I doubt you remember me, but-"
"Malik Ran, yes?"
"You do remember?"
"Of course! You're the best medic in the Order, after all. We on Alderaan have long held Jedi Healers in particular esteem. The power to give life is such a magnificent gift, one that should always be celebrated," Organa replied.
"Thank you, sir."
"But of course. You have no idea how grateful I am to meet any Jedi that managed to avoid destruction. Now, I don't believe I've had the pleasure, young lady."
"Serra Keto. What do you know of those events?" Serra asked. "All we know for sure is that Anakin Skywalker turned against us and led the 501st legion in an attack on the Jedi Temple."
"Well, the only Jedi that I am certain survived, besides yourselves, are Master Yoda and Master Kenobi. My ship picked them up in space as they made their escapes. That was after I witnessed the attack on the Temple firsthand. Saw a young Padawan blasted into oblivion by a group of clones. It was, in a word, disgusting...
"The official story from the Emperor's office is that the Jedi attempted to overthrow the government and assassinate its leader. Every last Jedi has been blacklisted as a result, with several intelligence committees being formed to try and track down any stragglers. I'm sure you know of my opposition to these policies, as well as the formation of the Empire, but I've had to be rather modest in my objections for the time being."
"Of course, play your cards close to the vest," Malik nodded in understanding.
"You know you're risking execution with this game you're playing, right?" Serra asked him.
"I am well aware of the potential consequences. The general public supports these measures, by and large. They blame the Jedi for starting the Clone War. But that will not stop me from doing what I know to be right," Bail replied with conviction.
"Dear? You did not tell me we had guests!" came a sweet female voice.
The group turned to see a beautiful woman in her late thirties, walking with elegant grace to sit next to Senator Organa.
"My friends, allow me to introduce you to my wife, and the ruler of Alderaan, Queen Breha Organa. My love, meet Serra Keto and Malik Ran. They are friends of our Obi-Wan and Yoda."
"How wonderful to have you here," she said, shaking each of their hands. "I am so happy to see that you arrived unharmed. Sadly, that is no longer a guarantee for anyone in this galaxy..."
"Thank you, Your Highness. Senator, at the risk of seeming rude and forward, we need your help," Malik said.
"I had a hunch," he chuckled in reply. "How are you two surviving?"
Serra answered, "We managed to escape Coruscant in a ship the Jedi Council had hidden away for emergencies only. Got here by way of Ord Mantell, found some parts there to build a cloaking device, but we still need to find a safe port."
"Well, you will always be welcomed as friends here, though I do not know how safe a port this will be for you," Bail reasoned. "After all, Alderaan is one of the most frequented locations in the galaxy. Besides, the Emperor will be keeping a close watch on us, what with our political disagreements."
"Still, we have not had any Imperial agents visit us yet, so I imagine you will be safe here for a few days at least. As far as I am concerned, you are welcome on Alderaan anytime," Breha chimed in.
"That's so kind of you," Serra smiled.
"It is the least we can do after everything the Jedi have done for the Republic over the years. While I opposed the Clone War altogether, I have nothing but respect for the soldiers and Jedi that put themselves in harms way for the safety of the people. That is always to be commended," Bail said. "Ah, but enough talk of unpleasant topics. Let us find our guests a couple of bedrooms to rest in."
"Yes... thank you."
Malik realized suddenly that his romance with Serra was still a secret. She took his hand as they followed the Organas, nervous for two reasons. First, she had no desire to sleep apart from Malik. Second, she feared the reaction when and if they told someone of their relationship. She was not ashamed of her feelings for him, but it was a taboo topic for Jedi nonetheless.
"Dear," Breha whispered to her husband. "Do you not think they would be more comfortable in a room together? The way she is holding his hand... they appear to be quite close."
"You think so? I was given to understand that such feelings are forbidden in the Jedi Order," Bail replied.
"Perhaps so, but such restrictions have never prevented those feelings from surfacing altogether. I find it quite plausible that two young Jedi such as they could have fallen in love in secret. And besides, the Order as it was is gone, giving them a chance to explore those feelings."
Bail chuckled as they turned a corner, leading the group to a pair of doors at the end of the hallway. "Here we are. Serra, you shall have the room on the left, Malik, the one on the right. You should be quite comfortable, but please do not hesitate if there is anything we can do for you. Now, unfortunately, these two rooms do share a single bath, located between them, so you will have to work that out."
"Thank you, Senator." Malik smiled, seeing that the arrangements gave them ample privacy and allowed them to continue spending time together.
Seeing Serra a bit apprehensive, Breha wrapped her in a warm hug in front of her door. "Be at ease. You are safe here."
"Thank you," Serra whispered, grateful for her kindness.
Serra opened the door, finding the room to be far more than a bedroom. It was a luxurious suite with an eating and lounging area separate from the bedroom itself. She turned to profess it to be too much, but the Organas had already left. Plopping down on one of the sofas, Serra let out a huge sigh of exhaustion; she felt truly relaxed for the first time since leaving Coruscant. Soon, the sound of the bathroom door opening caught her attention.
"Perceptive, aren't they?" Malik asked with a smirk.
"What? You think they set us up like this on purpose?" Serra wondered.
"No doubt. Didn't you see the gleam in the Senator's eye when he explained the bathroom accommodations? He knew damn well what he was doing."
"So... I guess that means they know..."
"They suspect, but they're too polite to confront us about it. Serra these are good people, and they'd never call us out like that; it's unbecoming of our hosts." He moved to sit next to her, unsure of what he was about to ask. "Does this mean... you're having second thoughts?"
"No!" she replied instantly. "I guess... I just worry what people will think of us."
"And since when have you worried about what others think of you?" Malik asked with a laugh.
"HAH! Ok, good point."
Scooting closer to her, Malik took her hand. "Listen, I know I've been the slow one so far in this relationship; you've been practically dragging me along the entire way. But I know these feelings are real, and I do want to be with you. If that means we're discovered and looked upon with disapproval, I'm just fine with that. But only if you are, too."
"Huh... who'd have thought I'd be the hesitant one by this point?" Serra mused with a giggle. "I could use some fresh air to clear my head. Walk with me?"
Departing their quarters, the couple strolled leisurely through the palace, admiring the artwork and sculptures adorning the hallways. Serra was entranced by it all; she felt so at peace in spite of the turmoil plaguing the galaxy. As they continued their stroll, the Jedi soon arrived in a beautiful outdoor courtyard. A large, ornate fountain stood in the center, giving the grounds a feeling of serenity. Watching the sun begin to set over the horizon in the distance, a pair of voices soon broke their concentration.
"It is without a doubt the best decision you've ever made, Dear. Even if it was without consulting me."
"You would have done the same thing. Ah, my friends! It seems you needed some fresh air as well?" Bail Organa called from the other side of the courtyard.
"Understatement of the century," Serra replied. "Thank you again for your hospitality. Your home is so beautiful; I could stay here forever."
"You are too kind," Breha said.
Seeing a tiny baby wrapped in the queen's arms, Serra cooed, "Aww, I don't think we've met, little one."
"Of course! This is our daughter, Princess Leia," Breha replied.
"She's beautiful..." Sensing a strange maternal instinct, Serra began to feel a desire to connect with the child. "May I?"
"Please do. Just mind her head."
"Oh my, you are just a cutie," Serra gushed, taking the girl in her arms.
"Impressive," Bail remarked to Malik off to the side. "Leia seems to have taken well to Serra's touch. Most people other than us cause the child to scream at the top of her lungs."
Watching Serra hold the tiny child, Malik began to see her in a whole new light: that of a mother. He saw the love in her eyes, the dedication she would show towards a child of her own. Even after everything they had been through together, she had never appeared more beautiful to him than in this moment. No further doubts lingered in his mind.
"You alright?" Bail asked.
"Huh? Oh, yes I'm fine."
The man just smirked at him. "I see that look in your eye, my friend."
"What do you mean?"
Giving him a light slap on the shoulder, Bail said, "You need to tell her how you feel about her. Believe me, you'll live to regret it if you don't."
"Is it... that obvious?"
"Perhaps not as much as you fear. My wife and I are quite perceptive."
"I... I'm certain I love her, Senator. That much is clear. Still, we both are hesitant in all this. After all, we're breaking the Jedi Code, everything we've ever been taught. Even though we know exactly how we feel about each other, we still experience inner turmoil coming to terms with this," Malik explained.