Tower of Time: Long Ago and Far Away
   

The Road to Rediscovery
Part 28 - Hiding

“Dustil, Bastila, what is it?” Carth asked with bleary urgency over the comm. The small blue holo of him from the waist up showed him wearing only a hurriedly wrapped robe. “HQ said it was urgent.”

“Carth, the Jedi have been attacked,” Bastila replied then waited for that cold fact to register with him. He looked as if he was still half asleep.

“Attacked, what do you mean?” he asked, growing in concern.

“Pretty much all the Jedi in the entire order went to Katarr to have a secret conclave,” Dustil explained, “But somehow, our enemies found out about it. We don't know for sure until someone goes to check it out, but we think they're all dead now.”

“Our enemies coordinated their attacks and stormed the Jedi Temple with Force-sensitive assassins. We barely escaped ourselves,” Bastila continued, and paused, unwilling to speak the terrible truth. “We fear that they killed all of the other apprentices. I doubt any of the others had the skill to get out alive.”

“Kriff,” Carth cursed, “That's terrible. How could someone do that?”

“Someone has a grudge against the Jedi Order,” Dustil replied darkly, “A powerful one.”

“What will you do now?” Carth asked, looking more awake than he had moments before.

“Your friends at the Navy Headquarters are keeping us safe here until we can figure something else out,” Dustil answered.

“We might be the last Jedi left,” Bastila added, “We have no idea if any others managed to escape notice of our enemies.”

“You can't go after these enemies yourselves,” Carth said quickly, “If whoever they are can destroy the whole Jedi Order in a day, you can't face it just the two of you.”

“It crossed my mind, Carth,” Bastila answered, “But you're right, we can't. We still don't know where to look or what we face, only that it is dangerous.”

“Maybe if they think that you are dead along with the others, they will leave you alone,” Carth suggested, “You could come to Telos and hide here.”

“No,” Bastila replied quickly, “We couldn't do that, Carth. If they did find us there, we would put your whole project in jeopardy.”

“And even if we run, it might be able to find us in the Force,” Dustil added.

“Aren't there any places you can go that will hide from even that?” Carth asked then added quickly, “I'm sorry, I just want to see both of you safe.”

Bastila thought for a moment, and then nodded slowly. “Where there is sufficient Dark Side power or a wound in the Force, we would be difficult to sense.”

“Please not Korriban,” Dustil said immediately.

“Wounds in the Force?” Carth asked. “What's that?”

“Places where lots of death and terror left its mark on the Force,” Bastila answered. “Many of the more terrible battlefields of the last wars have left wounds behind them.”

“Like Taris or Duxn?” Carth offered.

Bastila nodded. “But we dare not go to those places. I would not go near Onderon again, after...” Bastila started, but could not finish her sentence.

“How about Eshan?” Carth asked.

“Eshan?” Dustil asked.

“Home world to the Echani,” Bastila answered him, “They were attacked by the Mandalorians and fought brilliantly against them, but were slaughtered in the end. Yes, Eshan would give us the shadow of death to hide in. Why do you mention it, Carth?”

“I have some contacts there,” he answered, “Republic Military often uses Echani combat trainers for hand-to-hand fighting instruction. I know of a training academy that accepts off-worlders for training.”

“If we enrolled, then we could continue my training, in a sort of way,” Dustil suggested, liking the idea already.

Bastila nodded. “Thank you Carth,” she said earnestly, “This may be our best option, at least for now. At least until we know more or if we find that other Jedi have survived.”

“You two stay where you are at HQ,” Carth ordered, “I'll work out my contacts on Eshan and I will come to get you on Coruscant myself as soon as I can get away from here.”

“Thank you Carth,” Bastila said again.

“Thanks Dad,” Dustil said, sounding relieved.

“I'm so glad you're both alright,” Carth said with a ragged sigh.

“We won't keep you up any longer,” Bastila said politely.

“Yeah,” Dustil agreed, “See you soon.”

“See you soon,” Carth echoed, “Until then, please be safe.”

The connection between them shut and Dustil sank back into his chair with another heavy sigh. “I wish we didn't have to run from this,” he moaned, “We're Jedi... but if we tried to face whatever it is now, it would kill us.”

“I wish we could do something,” Bastila agreed, “Besides hide and hope for the best. I feel like we are abandoning the galaxy.”

“And maybe we are,” Dustil replied, voice heavy with pain and bitterness. “And maybe that's what's best anyway.”

- Next Part -


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