2. Dantooine: Reflections
“NILL!” Shamila’s high-pitched cry sounded through the cave. She opened her eyes wide. The rocky ceiling appeared above her. She lied completely still, almost unable to breathe. Slowly feeling returned to her. Her look carefully moved around. Rock ceiling, rock walls, rock floor beneath her. Rock everywhere. Her eyes widened. Were they, back then? Back in the cave on Zaloriis?! She sat upright. “Nill?” The first sight; a glittering crystal formation in the distance and a single kinrath walking past it. This wasn’t Zaloriis. They were still in their hideout in one of Dantooine’s crystal caves. Of course they were. She let out a disappointed sigh.
“Are you alright?”
Startled, she looked up as a hand touched hers. Jedi Knight Bultar Swan sat knelt down at her side, looking worried. “I’m, I’m fine…” Shamila nodded, unable to suppress a shiver. She felt so cold. The cave brought little warmth and her sweat soaked robes sticking to her body did not exactly help.
“Here.” Bultar took off her long coat and placed it over the girl as a blanket. Shamila smiled and wrapped the coat tighter around her. She felt the silver feather around her neck softly pressing against her chest and closed her eyes. The coat gave her some warmth and comfort, yet, it wasn’t the same. It just wasn’t anything like the large wing that had covered her that night on Zaloriis. How she longed back for that one night… “Don’t worry. You’ll see him again.”
“Huh?” Shamila looked to her side, seeing Bultar had sat down next to her, then quickly lowered her head, her lips slightly pouted. “Y-you knew…”
“Well, if you call out his name that loud,” the woman laughed, but stopped as she saw Shamila lowering her head even further and blushing fiercely. “But it’s alright.” She said in a comforting tone and gently stroke through the girl’s black hair. “It’s alright.”
The young Padawan stared at her feet, sitting there motionless. “But,” she hesitated for a moment. “Is it really alright?” she asked nervously while looking up at the other. “Is it, Bultar?”
Bultar gulped as Shamila’s gaze met with hers. There they were again! Those big dark eyes… Those innocent and beautiful, yet captivating and piercing eyes. Her breath stocked for a moment, then, less than a moment after, she felt completely at ease. It had constantly been like that, ever since they had left Zaloriis and Shamila had looked her in the eyes. Utterly frightening at one moment, and then, within the blink of an eye, more comforting and soothing than any other experience could possibly be. It couldn’t be denied that this girl’s gaze had something special, enchanting even. With them, Bultar was convinced, all but the coldest of heart could be brought down on their knees! Great things could that little Padawan achieve: from bringing the most wonderful blessings to wreaking the most terrible destruction. What is it the Force has in store for you, little Shamila? Bultar thought. And what do you have in store for us?
“Hmm?” The Knight quickly awoke from her thoughts. “Oh. Oh, I’m so sorry,” she laughed in a played embarrassed tone as she quickly recollected Shamila’s words before her thoughts had trailed off. “It’s the Jedi teachings, hm?” Bultar finally asked in reply. “You’re afraid you’re defying them, aren’t you?”
“Hmhm. Shamila nodded softly. “I hadn’t really given it much thought on Zaloriis, but, since we left there, it’s on my mind all the time.” She looked sadly at Bultar. “What I feel, it’s against the Code, isn’t it? So that means it’s wrong for a Jedi, right? I want to be a good Jedi, but, how can I be if I have those feelings?”
“Hmm…” Bultar rested her head on her hand, staring at the opposite cave wall for a while. “I think, Vhiran and I… We feel the same for each other, the same as you feel for Nillanthir. Does that make us bad Jedi, you think?”
“Huh?” Startled Shamila looked down. Pressing her lips together she softly shook her head. “N-no. I, I’m sorry. I, didn’t mean to say it like that, really…,” she whispered in a sad tone. “It’s just that…”
Bultar nodded sympathetically. “It’s frightening, isn’t it?” She put an arm around the girl’s small shoulders.
“Yeah,” Shamila replied, still whispering. She moved closer to the woman and carefully leaned against her. “But, how do you know, Bultar? How is it you know all my thoughts, know exactly how I feel?”