As Kylo Ren extended his hand, Rey paused. She could end generations of strife and agony and possibly bring balance to the Force once more, were she willing to take this step. Yet, she worried that by agreeing, she would compromise all that the Jedi stood for. She teetered in this moment upon the knife’s edge of a decision that would change the future of the galaxy. In that moment of indecision, she saw herself refuse Kylo Ren’s offer; she watched as war spread across the galaxy; she saw planets go up in flame; she saw the division that marred the Force remain unhealed for a thousand years. The raw hope in Kylo Ren’s eyes shook her, and she realized that her pride could not be allowed to prevent her from avoiding a thousand years of unnecessary pain and bloodshed.
Slowly, surely, Rey placed her hand in Kylo Ren’s outstretched palm.
With this action, she felt no fateful shock; instead, it was as if a roiling calm had filled her, sweeping away any remaining doubt with the knowledge that this choice, this balance had been her destiny.
“I apologize for my insensitive comments regarding your parents,” came Kylo Ren’s halting apology. “It is the truth, but there was no need to speak it with such rancor. For us to make this – agreement – work, we shall have to put aside such petty differences and past perceptions and be willing to embrace something new and better.”
Rey, slightly taken aback at his apparent sincerity, replied, “The knowledge of my family’s abandonment is still a painful part of my life, and I cannot speak of it now. I will forgive you this once. Because you are right. We must put aside the past and start afresh.”
“The first order of business must be stopping this pointless conflict between the First Order and the Alliance. I shall direct my troops to a ceasefire with orders to return to the ship.” Kylo’s clipped tones belied the urgency with which those actions must be taken.
“Then it is my duty to return to General Organa and inform her that you wish to meet with her regarding this new peace.” Rey countered.
Kylo Ren looked pained but resolved. “Yes. That is how it must be.” He cleared his throat and looked longingly at the lightsaber that rested between them. He nodded from it to Rey. “Please take good care of that lightsaber. It was my grandfather’s.” With that, he turned and strode to the door, already yelling orders to any stormtrooper unlucky enough to be waiting nearby.