I awoke to soft, warm surroundings. I stretched and yawned, trying to remember what had happened. It all came flooding back to me; the cave, the fall, the Sith! I sat up and looked around. Where was I ? What had that witch done to me?
I was in a bedroom. There was no windows and only one door. The bed clothes were very decorative; golden knots woven through crimson and purple. Pictures of mountains adorned the walls. My gear, little as it was, was placed neatly near the only piece of furniture other than the bed; a small, elegant dresser. I glanced at the door, wondering if it was locked. As I did so, it slid open to reveal a small green Twi’lek. She was dressed in a plain but lovely, red robe, tied with a purple sash. She kept her eyes lowered as she entered the room, the door sliding shut behind her. She held a folded pile of material in her hands.
“Good morning, my lady. The Master sent these clothes for you to wear. He requests your presence as soon as you are dressed.
I stretched slightly and immediately realized that I was naked. I pulled the covers tighter around me.
“Where are the clothes I arrived in?”
“They were damaged. They were properly disposed of.”
“I see. Who undressed me?”. The thought of just any person handling my naked and unconscious body was more than unnerving.
“I did, Mistress. I was very careful.” The girl kept her head down, sounding slightly embarrassed. “Please, do not keep the master waiting.”
“Who is your master?”
“You will meet him soon enough. Please come out into the corridor when you are ready.”
With that, the Twi’lek bowed and stepped out of the room.
I stood and walked over to the clothing that she had left for me. The robes were similar to the Padawan robes I already wore, but deep crimson, trimmed in gold. I reached for the clothes and noticed the smell coming from mine. Phew! No wonder they sent me clothes;I smell damp and molded!”
I quickly changed into the robes and made my way to the hallway. The twi’lek from earlier was waiting for me.
“What is your name?”
“Ka’leiah”. She turned and started off at a brisk pace. “This way please.”
As we walked down the hall, I took in my surroundings. The walls were covered with ornate tapestries depicting scenes from long ago. The floors were polished to a brilliant shine. Every so often, a lush carpet broke up the pattern on the floor, adding even more to the oppulence of the corridor. Well dressed servants flitted past and and an occasional maintenance droid could be seen going about its daily business. We took several twists and turns. I made several failed attempts to make conversation with the seemingly nice Twi’lek girl. She didn’t seem to be nervous, only very deciplined and determined to do nothing more than her master had requested.
Our walk ended rather abruptly at a large set of golden doors, flanked by large men in crimson robes. Each had a long ornamental spear which they held at an angle, one guard’s spear crossing the spear of the other. The spears formed a silent challenge to any that should dare to intrude. I found myself slightly in awe of my situation and I couldn’t help but wonder what lay on the other side of these large, cold doors. Who was this “Master”?
The guards shifted position at our approach, their spears lifting to their sides and their bodies becoming even more straight in their stance. The sounds of their movments echoed in the otherwise silent entrance way. The doors opened to reveal a brightly lit dining area. A servant leaned low over a long golden table, carefully placing platters of food. A wide window covered the left side of the room. A tall man in perfectly taylored robes stood gazing out, hands folded behind his back.
Ka’leiah ushered me inside and over to the window. She bowed low. ” My lord, here is the mistress as you requested.”
With that she rose slightly and backed out of the room.
I was left alone with the man. Sunlight streamed in the window, lighting up the room and bathing the man’s outline in a soft glow. He seemed serene. His broad shoulders and dark hair seemed almost familiar to me.
“You will never get away with kidnapping me, you know. My friends will find me.”
“Kidnapping you? I prefer to call it rescuing you.”
His voice was deep and smooth.
“You could have been hurt or killed had my apprentice not slowed your fall.”
“Who are you? What do you want with me?”
“I have a job for you, little bounty hunter. A job that will surely be of interest to you and will certainly be beneficial to us both.”
“I don’t work for the Sith.”
“I am not just any Sith, my darling, as you will soon discover. But enough of business for now, come, let us dine; you must be famished.”
He turned toward me then and I found myself staring into a pair of deep brown eyes. His eyes matched his hair in darkness and his skin was golden tan. He was every bit the tall, dark, handsome stranger! I cleared my throat and tried not to stare. He took two steps toward me and pushed away a strand of hair that had fallen across my face.
“I mean you no harm.” He tilted my face toward him and gave me a heart stopping smile. ” I doubt Aiden would appreciate it.”
My breath caught at the mention of Aiden’s name.
“You know Aiden?”
“Indeed and I must say, I am very disappointed! His description of your beauty pales in comparision to the vision of loveliness you are in person.” He flashed another smile.
I forced myself to look away from the beautiful Sith. A man with his looks, voice and eloquent ways could capture the galaxy without so much as lifting a finger. I had to be careful not to fall under his spell, besides, Aiden would kill me!
He led me to a chair and then sat down at the head of the table.
“You still haven’t answered me. How do you know about me, about Aiden; who are you? ”
The Sith lord took a bite of food from his plate and chewed it slowly before answering.
“Forgive my rudeness, I am Lord Saragus Vinolo; Aiden is my brother.”