Chapter 1: The Stranger in Green
Going through life you learned some things were more important than others. Money and loyalty were at the top of the list. You'd like to pretend money came first but you knew deep down you were too soft to throw away your bonds for some cash. Freedom came second, though it often came with money. That's how you ended up in your current profession. (Y/C/N) the bounty hunter. You had made quite a name for yourself throughout the galaxy, hunting, killing, and tracking numerous creatures. You were so well known, however, that a larger organization took notice.
"You want me to join the First Order?" You repeated, incredulously. The woman before you, this towering specimen of chrome and muscle, nodded.
"You have proven to be a great asset, you're an impeccable hunter and skilled in the force too. The First Order needs more people like you in its ranks." She paused, perhaps sensing your reservation. "And the pay is very good. We even have dental."
"Well, I have been looking for a steady gig."
Thus you were bundled up and sent to the frozen planet they called Starkiller Base to meet the people you'd be working with. The place was gigantic. It bustled like a beehive as engineers and stormtroopers went about their daily lives. You trailed after Phasma as she gave you the grand tour. And you should be honored, really. The captain didn't do this for just anyone . . . Or that's what she told you. There was your room, the officers mess, a roped off hallway that looked like someone had taken a chainsaw to it, one of your superiors' offices, and finally the war room. It was circular, a large table in the middle and a huge window looking out over a frozen valley. That was where your attention lay as Phasma continued talking at you. You felt the primal need to explore your new environment and wondered how long it would be until you were free to go. Your mind wandered in all sorts of directions as you watched the snow. It was beautiful, calming, and- angry? Emotions swarmed in your peripheral, just far enough away that they were hard to make out. Whoever was projecting them was in a particularly bad mood. Their feelings were causing a mosquito-like hum which you tried your best to ignore. Hopefully they'd get over it before you went crazy.
"(Y/C/N)" You were brought back to reality suddenly as the chrome woman called your name. She was standing next to a slender man with bright orange hair. He stood out amongst the dull greys and whites of this planet. His expression though, that fit right in. "This is General Hux, he'll be your direct superior while you're here."
"It's a pleasure to meet you." You said cordially. He looked you over like an engineer assessing damage on their greatest work. Your helmet, the Jakobeast leather cloak that had seen better days, and your overall demeanor didn't seem to be something he was used to.
"You're the famed bounty hunter I presume." I thought they'd be taller.
You smiled under your mask. "I guess so. And sorry. Next time I'll wear heels."
Phasma turned to Hux in confusion as the general's face turned beet red. "I- I wasn't aware you were force sensitive."
"I don't advertise it that much. Especially after the Order began keeping closer tabs on them. Other than feeling emotions and intentions I usually try to respect people's privacy." You hummed. That and hearing a menagerie of thoughts constantly is fucking annoying.
"Well that makes you much more controlled than our other force user." The annoyance that radiated off him was plain as day and his permanently sour expression turned darker.
"Is that who I'll be working with?"
"Working with isn't the term I'd use. We'd like you to temper his unpredictability as you help him track down Skywalker."
"I'm not a babysitter. I'm terrible at it actually."
"Hux is prone to exaggeration." Said Phasma, oozing exasperation. She must have been through a lot with these two. "He'll be here soon, you can make your own decisions about him then."
It was soon, the unpleasant whine you'd been hearing reached its climax as the door opened.
-Kylo Ren -
Kylo entered the room in a wave of black fabric and angst only to be met with a wall, towering and dark. It wasn't physical, but it sure as hell felt like it. He quickly locked on to its source, the stranger in the room. He couldn't feel anything from them. They were like a ghost, a black hole.
" Who are you? " He asked, frozen to the spot. " What are you?" The stranger tilted their head at him, furred hood casting shade on an emerald green mask.
"Seems like the rumors about you were correct. You really don't have any manners." A low robotic voice answered him. It didn't even take a full second for his shock to turn to rage.
Sensing the impending tantrum, Phasma stepped forward. "Let's try and be civil. Commander Ren, this is (Y/C/N). They're a bounty hunter and tracker that we recruited. You two are going to be working in the same squadron, so I would suggest getting used to each other."
"Of course, Captain Phasma." (Y/C/N) nodded before turning their black, bionic, gaze to Kylo. "I'm supposed to be helping you find Skywalker."
"I don't need any help." He hissed.
"That's not what The Supreme Leader thinks. He chose them personally to help you, Ren." Said Hux, looking like the cat who ate the canary. "Do I need to tell him there's a problem?"
Kylo was seconds away from removing that smug head from Hux's shoulders. But. And there was always a but. If his master had actually requested this, he needed to obey. He looked at the hunter again. He still couldn't sense anything in them but he had the briefest sensation of cool, soothing, fingers ghosting over his mind.
"Fine." Came the mechanical growl. "If Supreme Leader Snoke has requested it who am I to refuse."
The next day came sooner than you would've liked. You wanted more sleep. All the sleep. But here you were walking to Hux's office, your warmest cloak wrapped around you. You stepped in without knocking and the ginger general seemed less than pleased at your arrival.
"Can I help you?" He sneered.
"This is where we were supposed to meet to discuss our first mission. . . Right?" Hux's face screwed up in confusion, or maybe he just looked like that, before the realization hit him.
"(Y/C/N)?" He asked, you nodded. There was a pink tinge to his cheeks as he cleared his throat. "I wasn't aware you were- my apologies." He relaxed a bit at the easy smile that spread across your face.
"First I'm not tall enough, now I'm a woman, honestly, sir. I could find you a nice masculine, tall, tracker?"
"That won't be necessary." Hux stuttered. Why do I always get assigned the weird ones.
'Why indeed.' You thought to yourself. Hux pointed to a black sofa and you happily took him up on the offer. It was barely comfortable, more for appearances than anything else. But it was still a couch and you were determined to make the best of it. Your cloak made a great cushion, the general had the heating turned on, all in all, it was pretty great.
"So you seem pretty tired of this Ren guy." You mused aloud.
Hux was scribbling away at some papers, his pen stilled momentarily at your words. "Lord Ren is a valuable ally. . . If not a miserable child." Half of these damn papers are expense forms from his temper tantrums.
"Sounds rough." You hummed.
"You don't know the half of it."
You were only half listening at this point, the warmth of the room seeping into your bones. A little nap until Ren arrived wouldn't be too bad, right? As Hux droned on you crept closer and closer to peaceful oblivion.
But there it was again. The annoying whine. You had just enough time to sit up before the dark annoyance himself stepped into the room. He reminded you of a panther. Agile and deliberate, but temperamental as well. Kylo stared Hux down first, maybe he'd heard the man's anti Kylo tirade. But when he turned to you he froze again.
He'd been expecting the figure from before. The deep voice and absent presence. But- There was a girl instead. Warm (E/C) eyes watched as he realized he couldn't sense anything from you either.
"Are you going to do that every time you see me?"
Chapter 2: Hidden Agenda
A bit of a hint into our heroine's past.
Feel free to leave some feedback! I'm not really sure how my pacing is working out so another set of eyes would be great!!
You'd never get tired of this. Stars streaked by the ship in thin lines. The universe was immense and beautiful, being able to traverse it so quickly never ceased to amaze you. You'd been to all kinds of planets in your 23 years. Deserts, rainforests, the frozen Starkiller base, but the endless expanse of space was still your favorite. It was humbling. It spoke of an existence far beyond what you knew.
" Are you even listening to me ?" Your companion hissed. The way you snapped back to attention confirmed you had indeed not been listening to him. The Knight of Ren slammed his fist into the control panel, skillfully missing all the buttons. I can't believe they assigned me this child.
"I was just enjoying the view." You sighed.
"Ignore me again and you can enjoy the view from outside the ship." You'd like to think the threat was empty but Kylo had force choked you in Hux's office when you'd made another snarky remark. You couldn't quite remember what it was, but you could just have a concussion.
You made a show of turning and looking at him pointedly. "What did I miss." Certainly not the tremor of rage that surged through him, couldn't miss that.
"We'll be landing on Agaris soon. When we get there you will follow my lead. You will stay quiet. Is that understood?" Kylo explained slowly and tersely.
“Sure, I’ll follow your lead. It’s your mission after all.”
What you remembered, from when you had been listening, was that Agaris was an abandoned mining colony. They had one of the biggest Quadanium steel mines in the galaxy. The creation of the Death Star had drained the mines completely and the colony was henceforth disbanded. No one had set foot on the planet since then, and according to Kylo this made it a perfect place to hide. You had taken off immediately after the meeting in Hux’s office, Kylo had piloted his personal vessel with you and a small squad of stormtroopers in tow. He wanted a small team, no distractions, no fuck ups.
You had situated yourself in the co-pilot’s seat, much to your pilot’s chagrin, to watch the stars go by. The scenery had changed now. You allowed yourself a little peek after Kylo’s scolding and saw a small planet with swirling grey clouds. You frowned. It looked damp.
It was damp, and cold to boot. The ground squelched beneath your feet as you followed Kylo across the only flat area not too swampy to land on. Even so, it was still moderately swampy. The biome seemed to be a mix of towering bamboo jungles, red root trees, and piles of upturned rubble. The mining colony had left the planet thoroughly ravaged. It looked like the excavated anywhere they could, leaving the landscape full of weaving tunnels and remnants of the worker’s housing. Greyish moss had begun to creep over anything and everything. Your gaze fell on some tunnels without moss or any vegetation at all. They looked freshly used.
As you got closer to the forest you began to see more signs of tampering. Some trees had deep gouges and cracked lower branches while the ground beneath them had been layered with moss. Your eyes narrowed, some of the moss looked newer. A bright green contrast in the middle of the patch. Accompanied by a few wine colored specks. It was a trap and Kylo was headed straight for it.
"Kylo!" The man faltered, not at the sound of his name on your lips but the surge of panic that overwhelmed his senses. Time seemed to slow as you dashed forward, grabbed him, and threw yourself backwards. Where he had been now stood a cluster of sharpened bamboo shoots, some tinted dark red.
"I don't think this place is as uninhabited as you said."
“You think?” He said from the ground. You were still holding onto him. It was funny, in an annoying sort of way, that you thought you could shield him with your much smaller body. He pried you off him and stood up before the damp ground could soak his clothes. You were a bit surprised when he hoisted you up as well. “. . . How did you see the trap?”
"Oh- well, the moss hadn't totally regrown and there were flakes of dried blood in it." You explained, pointing to the areas closest to the shoots.
The masked man stared at you, expression hidden. After a moment he spoke. "It seems your skills will come in handy after all." He jutted his chin at the forest, a silent order for you to take the lead. And lead you did.
The forest proved to be a worthy opponent. Your survival skills were put to the test at each turn. Pitfalls hidden in the winding roots, tripwires causing arrows and other miscellaneous sharp objects to rain from the trees, and the moss traps from before. The deeper you got the more scratches and mines you found. Kylo stayed quiet, your ever present shadow. He made no indication of seeing anything important and your mind was more focused on discerning what creatures were making these traps.
Your first clue came as the sun slipped below the horizon. You had made it to the hills, broad expanses of excavated stone and tunnels. As you were both submerged in darkness Kylo noticed something in one of the tunnels. It was a faint green light and Kylo was currently running towards it.
'Lightsaber' Was all you caught before you sprinted after him.
"Wait! You idiot!" You called. But Kylo still followed the light like an overgrown black moth. He had just made it through the rim, you hot on his tail, when the hilltop exploded sending chunks of rock crashing down upon you.
You dreamt of your home. The kind of slideshow-like dream you can only get from head injuries.
Faces and noises shifted in and out of focus rapidly.
The ring and the X-wing. A soft kiss to the edge of your mouth.
Fighting and chaos. War time casualties. Countless friends and allies to be buried, if there was anything left to bury at all.
Someone grasped your hand, their face weathered and kind.
“I know this is dangerous. You don’t need to do it. But. . . If you do, please. Please. Bring him home.”
There was a sharp pain in the back of your skull and a heavy weight pinning you down. You drew a ragged breath as you opened your eyes to black nothingness. Were you blind? No, no. Once your eyes had a second to adjust you could see the soft emerald light and the texture of the thing pinning you down. It was Kylo's black robe and judging from the weight, he was still in it.
"Hey?" You said hoarsely, dust coating your throat. He didn't budge, even when you jabbed your elbow into him. You wiggled out slowly, almost free when a drop of warm blood hit your forehead. Needless to say, your escape became a bit more frantic after that. Once you were free you used all your strength to prop him up against the rocks. There was a large dent in his helmet that was leaking a slow trail of blood.
'Well. . . This isn't going according to plan.' You thought to yourself as you gently tugged at his bucket-like helmet. It took a few tries but eventually you pressed the right button and the contraption hissed open.
Seeing his face just strengthened the emotions swimming in your head. He looked just like he had in the picture you'd been shown.
Ben Solo .
Pale skin, pouty lips, and ears that were impossible to ignore. His time with the First Order hadn’t been good for him though. There were dark circles under his eyes and a few scars peeking out under his collar.
With a resigned sigh you reached into the pouch at your hip, retrieving a flask of water and a can of bacta spray. "You know," You mused aloud as your hand cupped his cheek, holding his head steady as you started cleaning the wound. "You're a real idiot
His brown eyes fluttered open. Blearily focusing on your face. "I heard that."
"Good, means you aren't comatose or dead." You were basically on his lap at this point, much too close for his comfort. He tried to push you off but his strength hadn't yet returned. Kylo winced as you retaliated with a stinging spritz of bacta. He huffed but didn't move again, sitting still as you made sure the gash was taken care of. The warmth of your hand and the breath on his skin was a pleasant contrast to the frigid tunnel. Or maybe he was simply touch starved.
"All done. Think you can stand?"
"Of course," He sneered. The man hobbled up ungracefully, but he did stay on his feet. "We need to find Luke. I saw the glow from his lightsaber. He's here."
". . . Alright." You said reluctantly. The light grew brighter and brighter as you trekked along. Before long you were met with something that was definitely not Luke Skywalker.
Green glow crystals. They'd be beautiful in any other circumstances. But Kylo was staring at them intently. Ragged breaths shook his body as his rage boiled over.
The silence was broken by Kylo's scream and the whine of his saber. Crystal shards went flying in every direction and you fell to the ground.
It felt like a heart attack at first. You felt your chest tighten and contract as fat tears streamed down your face. But it wasn’t from natural causes. It was him. His emotions were flowing straight into you and you had no idea how to stop it or how it was happening.
"Calm down- nngh! Fuck! Calm down! Calm down! CALM DOWN !!!" You sank to your knees, the pain in the back of your skull rising to a crescendo. Desperately, you reached into his mind, clawing at any peaceful memories you could reach. He slumped against the wall with a cry of his own.
The look he gave you was murderous. "I told you before, stay out of my head ." You couldn’t even be bothered to be frightened by the crackling lightsaber thrusted at you, you were too busy taking in gulps of air.
"I'm trying!" You hissed. "You think I want to be crying on the floor of some cave because you're having a temper tantrum?"
"You've made your mind impervious to any kind of mental attack but blocking out someone's thoughts is too hard?" He asked incredulously. His confusion was outweighing his rage, which was much better for your health.
"Well if you're so good at it, why don't you just-" You stopped, eyes unfocusing as a new presence barreled towards you. "Something’s coming."
To his credit Kylo didn’t hesitate to step in front of you, red saber illuminating the tunnel as the creature came closer. It’s mind felt simple, small. Focused only on its territory and survival. The closer it got the more you could hear the skittering of its legs. When it dashed towards Kylo you saw what it was.
“They’re Tarcs.” Said Kylo as he removed his blade from the newly flayed bug. “This should be easy at least. Get up. Let’s get this over with.”
True to his word the massacre was short lived. Every foot of the tunnel had to be filled with dismembered Tarcs at this point. Those that tried to run were allowed to, enjoying the night sky one last time before they were slaughtered, their job of leading you out finished.
Kylo didn't speak another word to you on Agaris or the flight back. And with the dull feeling of a mission unaccomplished you crawled into bed, ready to sleep away the stress of the day.
Chapter 3: Bonding
Time for the un proof-read, over 2000 words, chapter
A large chunk of the base had been devoted to the Supreme Leader’s chamber. It was gargantuan. It was a room with one use. It didn’t need to be pretty or comfortable. Dark stone walls had been carved out and smoothed down. There were few lights and, surprisingly, no floor. As Kylo walked across the single platform he wondered how far he’d fall if he took one wrong step. As he reached the end of the walkway a blue light illuminated the room. Flickering into view was what resembled a man. A towering figure of sloughing skin and robes. Even if the hologram wasn’t over a hundred feet tall the sheer pressure the man exuded would still be overwhelming.
“Master, I went to Agaris but Skywalker wasn’t there. He keeps evading us. The First Order must have combed through half the galaxy by now and we still can’t find him.” His voice rose as his anger grew and grew.
The hologram looked down at him emotionlessly. “You must do what Darth Vader failed to. Starting with killing Luke Skywalker. How do you expect to surpass him if you cannot kill a single Jedi?”
“I know, Master. Phasma has even hired a bounty hunter to track him down, like I couldn't do it myself." He fumed.
“Bounty hunter?” Kylo seized up as his master’s force gripped him. Visions of yesterday’s events were plucked out one after the other. “Hmm. . . I see. Phasma has recruited an interesting ally, hasn’t she? Perhaps this is someone who can succeed at something I have not."
"Sir?” He asked, still dazed from the sudden attack.
"Your mind is strong, but it lacks control. Emotions are what power us, keep us driven. . . But they can also be our downfall. Your rage needs to be kept inside, where the enemy cannot use it to their advantage. . . I suggest you learn what you can from that girl."
"But she's just a mercenary! What am I supposed to learn from her?!" Kylo exclaimed. "I doubt she's even had basic training!"
"Silence." Snoke hissed. Kylo's jaw snapped shut and he took a small step back. "You forget yourself. This matter is not up for discussion. Now leave before you test my patience any more."
". . . Yes-" The hologram cut out before he could finish, leaving Kylo cold and alone. "Sir."
Your bed was your only friend on this planet. Your bed didn't wake you up at the crack of dawn. Your bed didn't drag you outside without the decency to give you any breakfast first.
Your bed was much nicer than Kylo Ren.
"Where are we going?" You groaned.
"The Supreme Leader seems to think you know something about the force that I don't." He said, words dripping with venom. "So we're going to train." He apparently had spares of his trademark helmet as there was a dent free one on his head. Kylo led you through multiple hallways, taking so many turns you doubted you would be able to find your way back before sundown.
You squinted at him, brain still hazy with sleep. Shaking your head clear didn't help at all. He had really said that, hadn't he? "What could I possibly teach you?"
"I've been asking myself that all day. . . You seem to be able to completely wall off your mind and your presence. The Supreme Leader deems this a. . . Necessary skill."
"I'm not really the teaching type. 'Sides, isn't the "Supreme Leader" your master? Shouldn't he teach you something like this?"
"He has more important things to do with his time. You were hired to help me find Skywalker. Don't you think he'll be able to sense our intentions, our presence?" His mind was set and his tone commanding. He stopped, causing you to almost crash into him. Kylo had led you to another cold and dark room, the base's standard. From what you could see it was a small room with a mat placed in the middle of it and countless gashes on the walls. "This is where we'll train. No one will bother us here."
You chewed your bottom lip as you thought it out. Waging a mental war against yourself. On one hand, you couldn't teach a member of the First Order anything dangerous. . . But, you can't just feign ignorance with him. And maybe it would stem the flow of angry thoughts constantly flooding your brain. You could teach him how to at least control what emotions he let seap out of him, couldn't you?
"I can try, I guess." You said after a moment. "No guarantee it'll work." Kylo kicked the lone mat towards you, in a surprisingly gentlemanly move, as you resigned yourself to the situation. When you looked up Kylo had sat himself far away from you. He wasn't keen on this either, but if you were going to help him he'd need to be more relaxed.
"Take off your helmet. And sit closer."
". . . It's been a long time since I've done this." You began, explaining things slowly and patiently. "But if you're making me show you how I erase my presence you need to relax and be open with me." He paused, unmoving. "Maker's sake! I've already seen your face, Kylo!"
With a (childish) huff he pulled off his helmet, thick black hair popping free, and set it down beside himself. The circles under his eyes were darker. He must not have slept last night. Kylo flushed as your eyes moved over him. He felt exposed and weak. He didn't like it. Kylo wondered if you felt the same way as his eyes devoured your every feature.
Getting you out of his head wasn't his real priority, it was getting into yours.
"How's the cut healing up?"
"It's fine." The 'thank you' died on his tongue.
The two of you tried to relax as the session began. You started to show him the first technique you had learned, building a mental wall in your mind, laying down brick after brick. A “I’ve already learned that.” accompanied by a spike of irritation prompted you to try something else. The second trick was harder to explain and apparently harder to learn. You needed to imagine an ocean of cold black water surrounding you, encompassing you. the meditation wasn't going well. Your mind kept picking up on all of Kylo's thoughts and emotions. Kylo kept shifting around, brow furrowed, as he tried to simultaneously block off his mind and invade yours. After a few hours your sore butt and empty stomach were all you could concentrate on.
Kylo's eyes shot open as you stood up to stretch. "We're not done yet."
"We're not getting anywhere and I'm starving so yes, we're done."
"Well maybe if you'd let me in, let feel anything from you, this would work." His jaw was set and you knew he wasn’t going to give up without a fight, or surrender. Though, maybe you could use his apparent obsession with getting into your mind to your advantage.
"A compromise, then. You let me go get food and sleep. I let you into my head." You felt the little twinge of excitement run through him and knew you were going to get your way. You sat back down, knees touching his at two burning points, and made him a door. He surged through it immediately, reveling in the presence that had been hidden from him all this time.
You had opened the gateway just a bit for him. It was like a fenced in yard for a dog. He knew there was more out there but he had his own space and his own corners to sniff around in. He was able to catch images, stray thoughts, or feelings. And more importantly, he was able to feel you. You were no longer a ghost, you were a real, tangible, woman. If everything was simple and clean, Kylo would have been content with his little “victory” and you would have gone to the caf alone. However, Kylo followed you to the officer’s mess like a dog on your heels. He sat next to you, watched you eat, watched you put your tray up and leave, all while roaming around in your head.
You thought he’d get bored by now or at least realize he wasn’t getting anything else out of you. But he just wouldn’t stop. You had put up with through your dinner/breakfast but now you were trying to sleep and it was getting rather annoying. You didn't have a second free from Kylo's insistent poking around in your head.
Finally, you’d had enough.
"What is it?" You projected. "Why are you still dicking around in my brain? It's like. . . Gods I don't know what time it is. But it's late and I want to sleep." Kylo wouldn’t admit it but your voice made him jump. He was alone in his room, like you, getting ready for bed and not at all prepared for someone else’s voice in his head.
His reply came fast and clear. "Why are you still hiding things from me?"
"Maybe I enjoy some semblance of privacy. It's not like I go digging around in your mind."
"That's a lie. You always know what I'm feeling. Even when I don't want you to." He bit back.
"You're an open book. Not my fault I can pick up all the emotions spilling out of you." You felt the prickles of his anger like pins and needles on your skin. "Like that, for instance. I'm not trying to pick your brain, I just can’t stop your head from shoving all your emotions into me.”
Kylo took a few deep breaths to steady himself. That, and your soothing presence, slowly calmed him down. "You. . . Bring them out of me. I don't understand why."
“Wish I did.”
“. . . Me too.” He trailed off for a second and you almost slipped into blissful slumber. “I’m surprised you haven’t shut me out again.”
" I’m surprised you’re talking to me. Well this is the chattiest you've ever been. And the most civil."
"You’re just bearable for once." You laughed at that, soft and warm. He heard you so clearly he felt that you had to be right next to him, when he opened his eyes he imagined he could see you sitting in your bed. But… Wait. He could see you. The wall across from him was gone, in its place was an entirely new room. And there you were, leaning against your headboard, real, present, and tantalisingly unclothed. He had just enough time to drag his eyes away from your chest and catch the shocked look on your face before the connection was severed. He jumped out of bed immediately, chest rising and falling as he tried to make sense of what happened. Kylo tried to reach out again, desperately, but you were hiding.
That only left one option.
A minute later he was at your door, fists crashing against the cold metal until you opened it. You were there, dressed only in a loose robe. You stared at each other in dazed silence, brown eyes searching yours. Kylo broke the trance, stepping into the room and pressing into you. His hands gripped your arms as you were pushed back against the wall.
"What was that?"
"I could ask you the same thing." You whispered, eyes not leaving his. "That wasn't a vision you were- you were there , weren't you?"
"I think so. I could see you," He paused. Gaze roaming down as he licked his lips. Kylo looked back up, noticing how close he was to you, how your cheeks were tinted pink, and he pulled back as if he'd been burned. "This must have something to do with our training. Maybe we-"
"You finally let me in today. Maybe that's what triggered it." He mused, strolling past you into your room and pacing about.
"Alright then." You muttered. "Guess we're doing this." You walked over to Kylo, putting a hand on his arm. "C'mon, you'll wear a hole in the floor. Sit. I'll make us some tea."
The First Order, while being a bunch of murderous bastards, was apparently quite generous when it came to "senior officer's" housing. You technically had three rooms, the lounge/kitchenette, bathroom, and your bedroom. Though, currently, you wished you had another wall or two to get away with Kylo's gaze.
"Why are you so calm?"
"I'm not. I just don't think it would help right now if I was all," You waved your hands wildly in the air. "You know?" He took up most of your small couch but you squeezed in next to him. The tea you gave him was met with a questioning raise of his brows. "It's chamomile. With a bit of honey that I stole from the kitchen."
"When did you do that?"
"In the millisecond you stopped probing my noggin during dinner." The glower was back but he did drink the tea. You let your head drop back against the cushions, steaming mug held in your hands. You were too tired for this to be happening. Too tired to think about the repercussions whatever this bond could create. “Has this ever happened to you before?”
“No. You?” You shook your head and the man slumped back in response.
“. . . There’s an abandoned Jedi temple on a planet close to here. . . We’ll go tomorrow.” Kylo told you, his voice slower and softer than normal. A quick glance over revealed that he had fallen asleep on your couch, the dark circles, and chamomile, finally winning out. It was easier to see him as a man like this. Not some monstrous casualty of war. You were starting to like him too much. Far past what was appropriate for your job. And the worst part? You could feel every strong emotion he had so you knew he felt it too. You sighed as you plucked the mug from his hands.
'Forget about blocking out his feelings, I should just block out my own.'
You threw a blanket over him haphazardly before climbing into your own bed. You were almost asleep when you felt the bed dip down, a warm weight settling next to you. You didn't say anything, neither of you did, your mind was too preoccupied trying to convince itself you were still okay. That this mission wasn't starting to spiral out of control.
Chapter 4: Remembrance
Sorry this is pretty short! I didn't want to give everything away at onceee
slight trigger warning for child abuse/mental abuse I guess, it gets a little heavy with reader's parents
Before bounty hunting, before the resistance, there was Hosnian Prime. Your parents had been two well respected members of their army. Your father a strategist, your mother an engineer. They were overjoyed when they had you. A perfect baby girl to continue on both lineages of military careers.
They raised you on a strict diet of boot-camp esque training and large tomes of military tactics. Needless to say, you weren’t all that popular. Your childhood dragged on without much variety, the only changes were the rotating parties you were dragged to. Each one a new opportunity for your parents to show you off and put words in your mouth. Apparently you were ecstatic to continue on the lineage of war heroes and military geniuses, you loved your home schooling so much that you insisted to be put in night classes as well, and you had taken apart a drone and reassembled it in five minutes flat. The stories your parents preached were far from the truth.
While military strategy was interesting to you, you never saw it as a career. You wanted to explore the other things the universe had to offer. You wanted to travel and explore planets without worrying about setting up a colony or wiping out a hostile force. You wanted to write, take pictures, maybe even try your hand at painting the rolling fields on Grange or the snow-capped mountains on Hystia.
You wanted to live.
You were supposed to enroll in The New Republic's School for Military Planning and Development that summer. There was a month left before you were shipped off and you knew this was your only chance to voice your mind. You were scared, but your parents loved you. You knew they would support you if you explained how much pressure they were putting on you.
You doubt you’d ever forget what came next.
You’d sat through dinner, shifting nervously in your seat and nudging at the vegetables on your plate, waiting for the right moment to make your move. As you helped your mother wash up you decided it was time.
“Sooo, I’ve been meaning to talk to you guys about something.” You started. Your mother hummed, attention still on the dishes. “I know I’m supposed to be heading to the Military school next month but. . . Well- I was wondering if I could . . . not?” She stopped mid scrub, sink still running.
“I just- I want to go see the world. I’d rather go to the art school here or on Grange, honestly. I’m just not passionate about the military.” You said, nervously. Your hopes for a peaceful talk were crushed.
“All we’ve done, we’ve done to get you here! Do you realize how hard we had to work to get you into this school?” She snapped.
“But I don’t want to go, I never have!” You were shocked at her reaction. While your mother had always been controlling, she’d never screamed at you like this. You were starting to get scared.
“Now let’s calm down-” Your father tried to intervene but your mom was too far gone. She held her hand up, silencing him.
“How dare you be so ungrateful!” Your mother threw the dish she was holding down and you winced at the sharp sound of shattering glass. She took a step towards you, then another, until you could feel her breath on your face. “Why would you even want to waste your time on this crap. You’ll never be an artist. You’re not good at it, all you have is this opportunity and you are going to take it, maker help me. You should be thankful that you’re even allowed to go to this school. Do you know how hard it was for me? For your father? How hard we had to struggle to get where we are, to give you this life?”
“I’m not you!” You cried. “I don’t want to be like you!”
Her eyes narrowed. Mind lost to rage.
Your mother drew her hand back to strike you and you felt the fear take over your body. Every molecule in you burned with energy as you pushed your hands out, desperately trying to stop the impact. She never touched you, and surprisingly, your hands never met her either. Instead the feeling of pure, panicked, energy surged through your arms and sent your mother flying. Her body slammed into the wall and she slumped to the ground like a cloth doll. Your father shared your terrified look, both sets of eyes glued to her unmoving form. Finally, he snapped out of his stupor.
“What did you-” He cut off, chest heaving. “. . . Go to your room.”
“Now!” He shouted. You stepped back, hot tears searing a path down your cheeks, and ran to your safe haven.
As soon as the door clicked shut a sob wracked your body. You fell to the floor, holding yourself close. However, the embrace was short lived as you remembered just what those hands had done moments before. This was how your father found you hours later. Stock still, staring at your hands like they could tell you what had just happened. What you had done. He looked at you with pity, sorrow, and apprehension.
“Well you’ve got your wish. You’re not going to military school. . . You’re force sensitive, (Y/N). We can’t teach you how to control it here, or at the school.”
“What do you mean?”
“It’s too dangerous for you to stay here without learning to control yourself.” He said as two men entered the room behind him. Your confusion turned to teror, terror turned to cold emptiness, as the men advanced on you, pinned you down, and stuck something into your neck. As your vision dimmed you tried to catch your father’s gaze but he wouldn’t look at you.
That was the last time you remembered seeing him. When you awoke you were alone in a cold canvas tent. The opening swung in the salty breeze and you watched it waver as your mind struggled to comprehend what had happened. You couldn’t feel the tears or the bite of the cold. You just felt. . . Lost.
Suddenly, your eyes snapped open and you were back in the present. The shifting of your bed pulled you out of a dream you hadn’t had for many, many years. You were in a cold sweat and your brain was still foggy with sleep but you managed to piece together where you were. In the dim light of the room you could make out Kylo standing in the doorway. He stayed there for a moment, lips parted as if to say something, a strange softness in his eyes. Vulnerability, perhaps. But in the blink of an eye the moment was gone and so was he. You let yourself fall back into your pillow with a sigh, wondering if sleeping was worth it if you’d be dragged through the brambles of your life.