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Chapter 15

A lonely X-Wing entered the Ralroost’s hangar and gently touched down. Her helmet under one arm, lieutenant Jaina Solo jumped out of her cockpit, looking around. Except for her and a few technicians, the hangar was empty.

No welcoming party today? Jaina thought, the ghost of a smile tugging on the edges of her mouth.
It must be worse than I had expected. We’ll leave soon.

Distantly, she could already hear the hyperdrive engines of the giant ship warming up.
Apparently they had only been waiting for her.

She started for the hangar’s exit; her eyes noticing the familiar X-Wing when she passed by, but her mind not really recognizing it.
Just when she was about to leave the hangar, she froze and turned her head around to look back at it, frowning.

Was that-?

In that moment, another person entered the docking bay and bumped into her. For a brief second, she felt his arms around her body, steadying him and preventing him from falling; felt his warm body against hers.
Jaina turned around to face the man, but was speechless when she saw who it was.

Kyp quickly let go of her and pulled away. Jaina wasn’t sure if she had only imagined it, but she thought to have glimpsed a soft red on his checks.

Kyp? Here? How can that be?

She felt so confused and couldn’t force any word to leave her mouth. It was like she had lost control over her body. She hated it. She didn’t want him to see how much she loved him, though it was ridiculous. Why shouldn’t he know it? What was so bad about that?

Jaina took a few steps backwards, feeling unsure and almost afraid. She only half-heard his apologies.

What’s so bad about it?

Maybe I’m too afraid.

I’ve never thought I could be so afraid of one thing. And it’s even supposed to be so easy. Just three tiny words; that’s all it’ll take.


Jaina swallowed hard.

“Its okay, Kyp.” She told him, hoping he hadn’t noticed the uproar inside her, caused by a single touch.

The Jedi-Master bent down and lifted her helmet up, which she must have lost when he had bumped into her. Jaina couldn’t recall having heard it falling down.

Kyp flashed her a smile, but then moved around her and to his fighter. What seemed like an awfully long moment, Jaina only remained there, unable to move and staring into the space where her secret love had stood merely seconds before.

Collecting what strength was left in her, she slowly moved forwards, automatically making the way to her quarter.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Ean Ku pulled once again his villip out of its blanket. Stroking it, he knelt down and lowered his head when his superiors face appeared.

“You still live, Ean Ku?!” Nom Anor, executor of the Yuuzhan Vong growled.
“You should have ended your life for not fulfilling your mission and killing Mara Jade. And what about the Ralroost? It’s still happily flying around like nothing had happened!” He was obviously stirred up.

Ean Ku waited till his master had calmed down a bit and was more likely to listen to him before he spoke up.
“Master, if you allow, I’ll explain my cowardly behavior.”

Nom Anor looked like he was about to roll his eyes, but instead merely glared at him.

“As you probably already know, master, the Ralroost is on the way to join the infidel’s battle group at Ithor. It has two Jedi-passengers on board, Kyp Durron and Jaina Solo.” At this word, Nom Anor looked immediately more interested. Ean Ku smiled inwardly.

“My plan is to wait till the infidel’s fleet and ours are engaged in combat, before my fellows and I will take over the ship and attack the other infidel ships from inside their own ranks.
I know it will lead to my death, but I am willing to give my life to honor the gods, especially Yun-Harla, the trickster goddess, and bring glory to my domain.
My death will also rub the enemies one of their most important leaders, a bothan admiral called Kre’fey.” He added.

Nom Anor seemed to consider the possibility. Finally, he nodded approvingly.

“Good. I’ll inform our fleet about the changes. They’ll make sure to spare your ship.” He promised.
“Just one thing: What about the two Jedi?”

Ean Ku waved his concerns aside.

“Both of them are pilots, they’ll hopefully die in combat. Even if they should somehow survive, they don’t know anything about our plans. They won’t interfere.”

Or if they should, I’ll take care of them.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So boring. I wonder how Mum is able to survive that. Jaina thought when she collapsed onto her bed in her quarters after the ceremony on the ithorian herdship.
Politicians are awful. These ego-monsters. Self-important idiots.
Glad to be away from them.


Anni stormed in, shouting her name.
“Jaina, Jaina, Jaina!”

Excitedly, she came to a halt only inches from her friend.

“You won’t believe it!”
“What?” Jaina asked, grinning about her friend’s behavior.

“I’ve just met the most attractive man of the whole universe!” Noticing the expression on Jaina’s face, Anni quickly added: “Except for Kyp, of course.”
“What’s his name?” Jaina asked beamingly.

“Jagged Fel.”

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