Awgro marched to one of the screaming consoles and punched its controls and shut it off. ‘Report?’
            ‘Only that room took that much damage, the rest of the ship is holding. We’ve sealed off that whole level until repairs are complete.’
            ‘Well, there goes our leverage,’ said Mar Dalkars. The Chagrian shook his head. ‘We should have taken the offer. We would have lost Fane anyway.’
            ‘That was not your call to make. We need Talyc and he is the one whom I need to kill,’ barked Awgro.
            The now freed Reformed Sith entered the room, arriving from the hangar after the escape pod had been retrieved.
            ‘You were ready to let us be killed, Awgro?’
            ‘I was testing Shadie! I knew she was more Jedi than Sith. But I wanted to see her reaction and to know what she would do. Her compassion is her weakness and will be her downfall.’ He looked around. ‘The rest of you were killed on Mandalore?’
            ‘Yes, and Talyc killed one of us in our cell.’
            Awgro snickered. ‘Talyc is more like me than he would like to admit; we are more alike than he thinks. We are Kanderas after all. Impulsiveness and anger run through our veins. The only difference is I have the Force and he does not.’
            ‘What’s our next move?’ asked Mar Dalkars.
            ‘Don’t ask me!’
            Awgro left the room, but he noticed the group who had arrived from the escape pod eyeing him very differently. He noted it and knew they were no longer to be trusted.

* * *

            Nriwe wrapped her arms around Talyc, taking him in a tender motherly hug. Talyc smiled.
            ‘Motherhood suits you, you give good hugs,’ he said.
            ‘I’ve always given good hugs,’ said Nriwe. ‘But I give the best when it is the most needed.’
            ‘I give good hugs too!’
            Talyc looked down to see Thera smiling up at him. He bent down and took the little girl into a warm embrace.
            ‘We’re going to find Uncle Fane,’ she said. ‘I promise!’
            ‘For a little girl, you promise a lot of things,’ said Talyc. He playfully tickled the top of her turquoise head and she giggled.
            The group sat with Lian and they discussed the possibilities. They waited a few days to see if the Sphere would wake and contact its masters through the Force, but several weeks went by and there was still no word.
            ‘We need to focus on finding Maranna,’ said Lord Void. ‘We must assume that Fane is safe. We’re keeping a lookout, but we’ve not found him, nor his presence in the Force, nor the Sphere’s. Waiting around will not help.’
            ‘But we don’t have any leads on Maranna either,’ insisted Shadie. ‘All we can do is wait.’
            Talyc sighed and left the room. He bowed his head, standing in the Crypt’s corridor. He did not want to be part of their debate. All he wanted was his husband back and for him to be safe. He felt a small hand take his.
            ‘I’m not going to wait,’ said Thera, as though sensing his thoughts in the Force. ‘I’ve been trying to find Uncle Fane in the Force.’
            Talyc smiled. How could such a small child find Fane when her father who had a connection in the Force with him could not? But she was not waiting like the others, she was not trying just ot give up, or feeling discouraged, she was just trying again, and again.
            ‘I need to change the way I’m searching,’ she said.
            ‘How so?’ asked Talyc as they walked to the platform and went up to the upper level.
            ‘There is a connector missing,’ she explained. ‘Once I find the connector, I can connect and find Fane.’
            Talyc laughed. ‘Well, a connector usually helps…connect.’
            ‘That simple, eh?’
            Talyc and Thera walked to the edge of the Crypt and looked up out into space. Maybe the girl was more powerful in the Force than he gave her credit for.
            ‘And where do you think you’ll find this connector?’ asked Talyc.
            ‘Wrong question, Uncle Talyc. It’s not where, but when!’
            ‘All right, when are you going to find this connector?’
            ‘The Force tells me very soon!’
            ‘That is good to hear.’
            And it was, regardless from whom it came, if the Force spoke true and it spoke through Thera, knowing that soon something in the Force would happen comforted Talyc. He knew that Fane was somewhere in the galaxy, within the Sphere, protected and safe, healing. He trusted the Sphere would keep him safe, he had to trust it, and he had to trust the Force. He’d seen it work in wondrous ways and touch him in various ways despite he did not have the Force. He had to believe that it was at work and things would soon be in motion again.
            Thera leaned her head on Talyc’s leg. He crouched down and put his hand on the child’s head, but it was her who brushed his head in a comforting manner.
            ‘Soon,’ he mused. ‘Very soon. That’s much better than later.’
            He stared out, and hoped that Fane could sense him as he always did, and he kept repeating to himself: ‘Soon, very soon.’

To be continued…

“Trials in the Force” is written by Celinka Serre (2022).

Disclaimer: The Characters in this Fan-Fiction are new and have original names. The story is an original written work. The story is derivative and consistent of Fan-Fiction since it borrows the franchise world of Star Wars. Certain jargon and places, or concepts mentioned, along with the SW Old Republic universe belong to Lucasfilm Ltd. and Disney. No characters or story lines from the films are used. No story lines or characters from the games or books are used. A handful of characters from the games may be referenced, but are not the main focus in this fanfic story.  This fan-fiction story falls under Fair Use.

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

You might also enjoy other SWTOR fanficsDragon Age Fan-Fiction short stories,  Mass Effect Fan-Fiction, or Stardust Destinies the High Fantasy Fiction series.

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