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Riptide

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Jhonnen was dozing on the couch when it happened. He felt it first: an impending darkness that forced him off the couch and to his feet a few seconds before the front door exploded inwards.

“Jhonny!” his mother screamed his name and Jhonnen threw his will forward like he was knocking over cans in the back alley with Kira and bowled the invading soldiers over before turning and darting to the back bedroom where his mother was calling for him.

Isixia jerked the door closed and took a half second to smooth her hands over her son’s face like he was younger than his thirteen years. “The window.” She pushed him towards it.

“What?”

“Go out the fucking window,” Isixia hissed, shoving him forwards. Jhonnen would remember the scent of death sticks and flower perfume for the rest of his life as they reached the glass and she pushed him through it.

He hit the ground and groaned for a moment before rolling to his feet. He had to run but he wasn’t sure where. He wasn’t even sure who was breaking into the house. Cartel soldiers? Maybe? All he knew was that his mother was terrified, and that she’d shoved him out a window to protect him.

He couldn’t just leave her though. He was gifted in the Force. If he could protect her he had to try.

He heard a scream.

“Mom!” He shouted back. He staggered to his feet and came around the front of the building.

They weren’t cartel soldiers.

Jhonnen took in their jet black uniforms with defiance in his pale grey eyes.

“Halt,” one of them pointed their blaster rifle at him. “You’re coming with us.”

<< Suck hutt nuts in hell, >> Jhonnen spat back in Huttese. He threw them out of the way with the Force, grunting with effort as he did. “Mom!”

“Jhonny!” Isixia’s scream was heightened on the end with sounded like pain. “RUN!”

He froze, terror making his knees knock. “I’m… I’m not afraid.” He lied. “Let go of my mother!”

Something cold dripped into his stomach as the apartment door opened and a tall, familiar. man levitated Isixia down the the steps by her neck. “Behave,” said the pureblood Sith lord holding her captive. His tone was calm and icy. “Or I will snap her neck.”

Jhonnen swallowed. It had been nine years but he remembered the man’s face. The proud, haughty bearing. The silver eyes that had been passed to Jhonnen.

“Run,” Isixia croaked again.

He knew the story, how she had fled to protect him. How his gift in the Force was why they lived in a Nar Shaddaan slum and not the lap of luxury. How she had wanted to protect him from everything that being Sith entailed.

Jhonnen was very, very still.

Isixia was dropped in the street.

Jhonnen felt Kira’s thoughts snake into his, she must have been nearby, he tried to warn her to go away but the thoughts remained. Like their grubby hands gripping each others.

I’m here, Kira promised through the Force.

Jhonnen clung to her as Isixia rose up on her knees. “He’s a child Fen—Vitreous,” she corrected to the sith name. “He’s our child. You can’t just—”

Vitreous silenced her with an armored backhand that threatened to split her jaw. “He’s my son, Isixia. Did you think I’d let you steal my legacy and squander it? Living here like a common Nar Shaddaan whore?”

Jhonnen clung more tightly to Kira. He reached out to his mother, knowing that without Force Sensitivity she couldn’t reach back.

“The boy needs a lesson about how life will work from now on. You robbed him of an early start, but perhaps the first lesson needs to be the most poignant.” Vitreous drew and ignited his lightsaber in one fluid motion. Jhonnen screamed as he felt the death snick through his thoughts and the fire that had been Isixia Lief was extinguished.

“I’ll kill you,” he screamed. “I’ll fucking—”

Strong hands gripped his jaw and forced his head up. “Someday, perhaps. Now you will come quietly, Jhonnen, or I will find the friend I sense and I will teach you two lessons about weakness in one day?”

Kira squeezed Jhonnen's thoughts, trying to shield his mind with her whole being as he was lead away.

Their connection failed as Jhonnen boarded the ship to Dromund Kaas, the distance prying them apart and leaving him with only his mother’s death to occupy his mind.