Although through the open window the coolness of the tatooinian night entered, the Jedi Ulic Bel-Baal did not find sleep. He rolled jerkily back and forth. He had finally come to a decision. Too many thoughts and emotions went in his head around, it were for him impossible to come to a resolution. Finally he sat up. His view slid to his fiancée Silya Starrider, which lay and slept peacefully beside him. No concerns disturbed her slumber. The gentle moon light touched her regular features. How much he loved this woman. His love for herr had become only stronger, since he knew that she carried his child in her body. Yesterday he had felt for the first time the becoming life in the Force. Weakly only, but nevertheless unquestionably recognizably. Silya would bear his daughter in 8 standard months. Still she did not suspect anything from her pregnancy, because she was totally Force-blind, contrary to him, and he to her nothing of it had said. He smiled melancholic with the thought that his daughter, despite the Force-blindness of her mother would be, a Jedi. How very much he had wished himself a child. And had now where his most ardent desire was fulfilled to him, he have to go away. He did not have another choice. The former senator Palpatine had let himself be proclaimed for the end of the Clone Wars to the Emperor. He had hardly torn power as he began his systematically pursuit and destruction of the Jedi. He hated and abhorred the guardians of peace and justice in the galaxy. His willing helper and executor was a former Jedi named Darth Vader. Many Jedi were already his victims. No possibility gave to hide from him. Two standard weeks ago Vader had sought out Ulic on this distant planet in the Outer Rim. And he had felt here, so far away from the Core, safe. But this security was, as he had with frightening to determine, deceitful. Vader placed him before the alternative either give in the dark side of the Force or to be killed. He was only a weak human and consented to be instructed in the ways of the dark side. He hoped, to be able to turn away later from the dark path which he would enter. When he recognized the fact that it would give for him no comeback it was already too late it. Still everything that in him was once good, had not been killed by Vader's training, but the time was not far, where him love, friendship and confidence would mean nothing more. He saw thoughtful on the woman, who would bear his child. Up to now he had succeeded in shielding this point in his consciousness before Vader. But how long he would succeed, if he descended ever more deeply to the abysses of the dark side? There was no way out. In order to protect Silya and his unborn daughter, he had to go, before it was too late. Yesterday he had spoken with his friend Jula Darklighter and had asked to take care for Silya and the child if something happen to him. He felt, how tears dripped on his hands. The agony tore nearly his heart but soon he would not have such emotions any longer. He would be just as soulless then as Lord Vader. Ulic shivered with the thought. He
rose and put on his clothes. It was better, if he went now directly, before Silya awaked. If she would ask him to remain, he didn't have any more the strength to leave and he would endanger the wife and his daughter. Quietly he went into the sitting-room and wrote hastily a
short message on the datapad lying there, in which he communicated Silya that he was suddenly detached to his unit and couldn't wait till morning. Then he went again into the bedroom. His views slid affectionately over the shape of his fiancée bathed in the moon light. He sighed with the memory of how often they had made love in this bed. Then he turned away and went. It was a farewell for ever.

© Claudia Riedel 1998