Chapter 9 The illusion of guilt
The current crew of the Peacekeeper had took of from Tython's surface from the Jedi Temple's Hangar Bay and left for the Smuggler's Moon, Nar Shaddaa. Atton set the ship on autopilot and relaxed for a few minutes from piloting. He hasn't been there since he was the pilot of the Ebon Hawk. He had reflected on the days spent with the captain of the Ebon Hawk before learning that she had to leave him and the rest of the group that she had help form to stop the corrupted remnants of the Mandalorian Wars. Those that survived that war had likely became a Sith, but they weren't the true Sith. The true threat out there. The last captain of that ship, along with it's previous captain, were said to be the only ones in the galaxy that could stop this threat that was hiding in the shadow's in the Unknown Regions of known space. Atton wondered if they had succeeded and if so, why was it taking so long for Revan and Meetra to return? His thoughts and worries had made him see Jacob's thoughts and feelings without him meaning to. He quickly tried to get away from him but Jacob's voice sounded in his thoughts.
Don't leave. He sounded real hurt. More memories of him and his short time with Meetra Surik had surfaced from the shadows of his mind. He could feel that Jacob was also hurting, like she was. A different wound, but the same intense feeling of pain.
So Atton Rand and Jacob Alexander had started a conversation with their minds. Jacob first told him everything, how his adventure began with a friend that had to disappear because of the evil presence of that part of the universe had disappeared, too. How he had learned powers that not even any Jedi or Sith could ever learn. How he had most of his powers stripped from him thanks to Joshua escaping from the confines of Jacob's heart. How he met a friend who was forcibly turned against him for a fight to the death. How he thought he killed Tye and lost control of himself, nearly giving Joshua free reign over him. How Joshua kidnapped Tye and gave the tiger over to Chaos so that when Jacob and Chaos would fight, the archdemon's final trap was set for both Jacob and Tye. Jacob would try to save Tye by sacrificing himself to the realm of darkness that the four of them, Jacob, Burstrion, Tye, and Chaos would be sent to after Jacob's and Chaos' final battle. The battle that decided the fate of all of existence. Jacob had managed to protect Tye from fading into nothingness while trying to find a way out for both of them. He had heard an old woman's voice and a portal back to the Realm of Light had suddenly appeared. Jacob chose the noble option and let Tye live. But now Jacob was contemplating if that was the best of the options that he had at the moment.
Ouch. It must be harsh, going through all of that... Atton said, trying to comfort Jacob.
It is. Imagine that you just saved the entire plane of existence from total annihilation forever and saved a friend from a terrible fate. Only to learn that you only made things worse for him by saving him. I keep getting the feeling that no matter how close I get to him, I won't ever be able reach him again. Maybe the choice I made at the void, the Realm of Darkness, wasn't the best one after all... Jacob said, his resolve was wavering.
Don't think that... Atton said. He never liked it when he could hear or feel that someone else was feeling like giving up.
Why shouldn't I? Jacob asked. I said it was my fault that this happened to him, didn't I? Clearly he was beating himself up for what Fate had in store for him.
No, it's not your fault. Bao-Dur had joined in on the conversation. It's only the illusion of guilt eating at you.
Are you sure? Jacob asked him.
I've had the same feeling before, when I made the Mass Shadow Generator to crush the Mandalorians and anyone else on the now destroyed planet, Malachor V. I made shields to protect innocents from the Mandalorians, they destroyed them. I made weapons, the Mandalorians died. Crushed by gravity's fist. I felt so angry at myself for having to make that weapon and use it, even if it was necessary to do so. Then the General made me see that it wasn't real guilt, but an illusion that my mind conjured up. Your feeling of guilt and self-loathing is exactly that, too. Bao-Dur sure knew a lot about how Jacob was feeling about the situation.
Don't let illusions blind you to the truth. Fate, or for us the Force, set this in motion. Don't fall victim to it. Mical advised Jacob. Instead, let Fate be your guide through this dark time. Force it to see you and your convictions. Make it see that you aren't going to give up and then keep moving forward towards your goal.
Jacob thought about all that everyone had to say and saw that they had a point. It wasn't his fault at all. All of this was meant to happen. And he wasn't about to let Fate throw anymore curveballs at him without him sending a few to Fate's way.
Thank you. I'll reflect on this. Jacob told everyone and he had started to go into meditative state. Unlike the Jedi when they meditate, Jacob sat down Indian-style and started to make his currently unsealed powers fly around him. Doing this had unsealed the power of time. Jacob has regained the ability to bend time to his will and a gray orb had started to join the others.
A few minutes later and Atton gave the call on the intercom that they had reached Nar Shaddaa and was preparing to land.
"We're going to be landing in Refugee Sector so we don't attract any attention. Much less traffic there, too." Atton said, turning to Jacob. "If you have any questions, let me know. I know this place like the back of my hand." Jacob looked at him and nodded.
"Ok." He said as they touched down and opened up the loading ramp and the four of them left the ship to explore Nar Shaddaa.
Unbeknownst to them, Joshua had anticipated their arrival in the Refugee Sector and was staring at them from atop a skyscraper.
"Hmph. So it begins." Joshua said, leaving the skyscraper. No doubt to return to Tye and tell him that his failed savior has come for him.