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Ten Years of Rey

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“Load them onto the ship. And don’t drop them,” he says to the other Knights around him, one of whom seals the last shipment and, glaringly, sets it on the ramp. The others make a show of this, laughing and kicking their own boxes of kyber crystals onto the ramp before pulling them on board. They’re all rather young, perhaps a little younger than himself—eighteen, nineteen, all of them, whereas he’s just turned twenty and has the other six operating under his command. But, while he tries to act older than he is, the other Knights don’t quite care. They’re not the ones who’ve earned their way to a new ‘saber, they’re the ones who haul around staves, other double edged blades, sometimes needing nothing but a few blasters lying around on the cargo shuttle.

But, no, Kylo Ren himself is the one who finally—finally!—can put together his a lightsaber. (He tries very hard not to think of the one that he could have had back at the Jedi School. It always brings him disdain and a headache.) Sure, he’s young, perhaps a little too young to manage it, but he’s already come so far, done so much—and he has so much yet to do. There are still Jedi lurking around the galaxy. Jedi who, Kylo knows with a sneer, don’t deserve the power of the Force that lurk in them. Jedi like Luke Skywalker, and the second Kylo's crafted his own lightsaber, the second he can leave—begin his mission for ridding the galaxy of Jedi. 

“Everything’s loaded,” says one of the Knights, lagging behind the others. “We should head back, unless Supreme Leader Snoke wanted something else.”

“All I need are the crystals, Vero,” Kylo says to the other Knight. Vero sniffs. “Let’s go. Those crystals are valuable. We don’t need the whole galaxy on our tail, knowing we have them.”

Another Knight comes down the ramp. If it isn’t for the way he hurries toward him, Kylo wouldn’t have sensed his worry. “What is it?” he snaps, and the other Knight halts, his hands wringing and pulling at his armor.

“There’s something wrong with the ventral deflector shield. We don’t know what it is, and we don’t have a skilled enough mechanic on here to know.”

“Where’s the nearest trade port?” They can't risk hauling all of this through space. Someone would have to look at it—the cargo Kylo and the Knights are hauling is too precious to risk in shuttle with a faulty shield. Though it’s irritating to have to deal with it, Kylo forces himself to be level-headed. It’s getting hard for him. He clenches and unclenches his fists. 

The reply is Jakku, and Kylo frowns. He’s barely heard of Jakku, but it's never escaped him how the Stormtroopers cringed when they were assigned there. Once, in the hallways on their base, Captain Hux had complained about a missing delivery shipment of blasters, which had later been found intercepted near Jakku and stolen for credits.

“Set a course for Jakku,” says Kylo. “Let’s get this over with, quickly. I’m not risking those kyber crystals.”



Jakku is brown all over, filled with sand and dry heat, and Kylo immediately hates it. It’s hot, coarse, with scarcely anything of value. The inside of the ship is tempered against the harsher outside conditions, but none of the Knights look thrilled to step outside of the shuttle. They take off their helmets and masks, ridding themselves of their black and grey cloaks, and Kylo himself stubbornly paces the lower deck of the shuttle, waiting.

“Approaching Niima Outpost,” calls one of the Knights as they descend from the control deck. “Who’s going out there to get someone to repair the shield?”

Kylo rises. “Stay on the ship and make sure no one takes the crystals. I’ll find someone myself. And don’t you dare touch them—Supreme Leader will know.”

One Knight, Vero, scoffs at him but says nothing otherwise. The others just wipe at their foreheads as beads form on their temples, dripping down their chins. Their heavy cloaks and armor are only meant for Starkiller Base and they’re unused to the dredged sun high in the sky of Jakku, and it's no better in the cramped cargo deck of the shuttle among the cases of kyber crystals and the stale scent of Stormtrooper sweat that plagued the deck from previous trips.

Kylo descends from the ramp several minutes later and finds it immediately worse outside the shuttle in the burning sand. Jakku is a planet composed of nothing but sand, sand, sand, and Kylo wants nothing more than to head back to the base. But if they run across any pests on their way back, Kylo knows that losing a single crystal will invite a whole day's worth of pain from his master, so he storms off toward Niima Outpost a few hundred meters away.

The junkyard port is full of lifeforms Kylo doesn’t want to deal with. As he stalks through it, he gets numerous stares, some bemused, some a bit scared—some even eye his mask with interest, as though inspecting it, wanting to take it apart. Sure enough, he soon realizes that he sticks out—horribly—among this wretched place on this wretched planet, in his dark garb and masked face. And, despite the tatters on the ends of his cloak, he’s clean. Too clean.

“I need a shield,” he says sharply to one of the traders, a Melitto who breathes heavily in response. “Where can I get one?”

The Melitto makes a noise and shoos him away, breathing something about Unkar, and Kylo fights the urge to turn over the damn trader’s booth. Damn shield, he thinks bitterly to himself. I could’ve been well on my way to finishing my ‘saber. Where on this miserable planet was this Unkar?

But after several long minutes, Kylo learns that Unkar—rather, Unkar Plutt—is not hard to find. Actually, he’s horribly easy to find, and Kylo averts his eyes from the Crolute and the layers of lard that coat his body. Unkar Plutt is a junkboss, the likes of which Kylo would personally not want to deal with, but the likes of whom he has to, and Kylo’s irritation spikes as he sees the line trailing from Unkar’s sheltered shack. A bead of sweat trails between his shoulders under his tunic. Kylo straightens and, uncaring who or what is waiting for their turn, cuts into the front of the line and kicks sand away from his boots.

There’s an indignant, high-pitched “Hey!” behind him, but he doesn’t care, and apparently, neither does Unkar Plutt. “I need a deflector shield for my shuttle. The main ventral one's malfunctioned,” he says, raising a gloved hand and pointing out of the shelter toward his ship, which is half a mile away. “Something that works—I don’t care what—with that ship down there. Have someone come look at it.”

Unkar’s nonexistent brows rise at the sound of Kylo’s masked voice. He hmms to himself, the great fat beast. Something is tugging on Kylo’s cloak and he shakes it off, unconcerned, adding to Unkar, “I’ll pay, of course.”

Ugly, gross Unkar wrinkles his large nose in thought. “Oh? If you’ll pay . . . you will need to find a proper shield. . . .”

The tugging starts on Kylo’s cloak again. Kylo snarls and twists around, expecting a droid, a Kyuzo, something other than what greets him.

What does greet him is a little girl whose hand is wrapped so tightly around his cloak her knuckles have gone white. She’s shaking his heavy cloak with a furious frown and grit of her teeth, glaring at him with squinted eyes. And, most surprisingly, she has a large bag trailing from her left hand which clinks as she tugs on his clothing.

He wrenches his cloak out of her small hand and she huffs again. “Keep your hands off me,” he says, and at the moment he’s so frustrated he thinks he might just turn the whole place up in fire. Why can't he just blast the whole place down and get back to base?

“You cut me,” she cries, the little rat. “I was in line first! Don’t you know you can’t cut in line? I’ve been here for a whole quarter hour and I want my portions! You can’t cut lines! Move!

The need to blast all of Niima Outpost dissipates as Kylo opens his mouth, closes it, stares at the little girl who has her hair tied in three buns, one, two, three—they line the back of her head before the third and largest rests against the collar of her tunic. Is this what it’s come to, then? He’s being reprimanded by a girl who is, perhaps, barely half his age? Probably younger? A moment passes as he struggles to say something. It only occurs to him a second too late that he’s wearing his mask and the girl has no idea what he’s doing behind it.

She pushes past him with a very audible HMPH and bends down to her bag, pulling various parts (fuel pump, droid lenses, radios, the like) out of it and reaching up on her toes to put them on Unkar’s booth. Suddenly humiliated, Kylo steps aside and pulls her bag up onto the booth just as she reaches down to get another part.

He scours through the bag as she tries to pull his hands away, but he’s way too tall and she’s far too short. “Surely you have some sort of shield in here, little scavenger,” he tells her as she hangs off his arm. What a damn pest. “You must know what you’re doing to have gotten all this.”

All that took me three weeks! And what are you talking about, a shield? If I found a shield I'd have portions for a whole month!” she snaps. She turns to Unkar then, obviously having done whatever she's currently doing before. “How much do I get for these, Unkar? I’ve run out of my portions two days ago. . . .”

Kylo has no idea what the portions are, but he thinks, perhaps, it might be some form of money. He pours the other parts out from the bag and onto the booth, looking through them, seeing if he recognizes their form. Unkar Plutt takes one of the parts and turns it over in his hands. Then his eyes move from each part on the booth to the others as Kylo looks through them and puts them aside. “Two and a half portions,” says the Crolute as Kylo notes in frustration that there’s nothing he recognizes in the parts on the booth.

The girl drops from Kylo’s arm and stands on her toes again, hands and fingers outstretched, waiting for something. Unkar disappears from the booth for a second before he reemerges with several packets in his hands. The girl takes them and shoves them into the sack around her shoulder, as though she's afraid she'll lose them, but—for the briefest moment—Kylo sees the portions. Portions of rations. Rations. Of food.

This girl had gone without food for two days.

She wanders away, the empty bag trailing on the ground behind her.

“Never mind about the shield,” he tells Unkar Plutt. “I’ll find one myself.” And he leaves Unkar Plutt grumbling in his booth as the line moves forward.

The girl is wandering through the trading booths, moving as though she knows exactly what she’s doing. Kylo follows her halfway out of annoyance, halfway out of curiosity, and he’s even more irritated that he’s curious about her. She’s heading somewhere in a short trot, her eyes set forward, not needing to look at her surroundings. She’s used to this life, the life of a scavenger.

Kylo is sure she’d appreciate some amount of food.

It takes no effort for him to catch up to her quick steps—his legs are long enough to cover five of her minuscule ones, and in a matter of seconds, he’s got her cut off and she runs straight into his stomach.

The girl stumbles away and peers up through the sun to see him staring down at her through his helmet. “What?” she demands, shaking baby hairs from her forehead. “I’ve got things to do, y’know. Parts to get. Food to eat!”

“I need a shield,” he tells her. The voice that comes through his mask doesn’t faze her in the slightest.

“I don’t have one. You think I was lying? If I did, I'd have portions for a month.”

Kylo crouches down so he’ll be level with her eyes, though she can’t see his. “You see the ship in the distance? I need a working shield. I need it quickly, scavenger,” he adds as her eyes trace his ship half a mile away.

“Unkar’s probably got three or four,” she says. “You should’ve just paid him for one.”

His lips barely quirk behind his mask. At least she knows who has what here in this junkyard post on this wasted planet. “But you know which one he has is the best. You won’t waste my time and give me something cheap.” He adds something in his words—a little push, a little meaning, a little Force. Only a little.

He can’t tell if it works on the girl, though, because she says, “Yeah, I know which are pretty good, but I’ve only been scavenging for a couple years.” She frowns at him. “And I won’t do it for free.”

“Of course not,” he agrees. “No, little scavenger, you’ll get twenty times more than what Unkar Plutt will ever give you.”

Her eyes light up and, without another word, she leads him back to Unkar Plutt’s booth.



Distracting Unkar Plutt is easy. Kylo doesn’t even have to use the Force to keep him occupied. Unkar pulls out a couple of shields, all of them rusted, large, and faulty, trying to sell them to Kylo as shields that will last his way back to Starkiller and more.

“I’m not spending that much on it,” snaps Kylo as he stares at the lumbering, fat Unkar Plutt. “Surely you have something that won't go down the moment a particle hits the shuttle. I’ve been on this awful desert planet for an hour, already, and I can’t have you wasting my time with this.”

Unkar Plutt grumbles at him as he reaches down below the booth and acts like he's looking for another one. A movement behind the great big ball of slimy lard makes Kylo’s lips upturn slightly in appreciation. With Unkar still mulling around his shack, the shoddy deflector shields still sitting on top of his booth, he’s distracted enough not to notice the girl disappearing into the shelves in the back of his miserable hideout before running out. “This is the best one I have that will fit with your Lamba shuttle,” says Unkar Plutt. “All or nothing.”

“Waste of my time,” snarls Kylo. “It looks as if it’ll fall apart in my hands. Forget it, I’ll make do with a mechanic, someone who knows what to do.”

Unkar makes a heavy noise in his stomach. Kylo turns away and hears the shack’s booth door slide closed. There’s another tug on his cloak and he looks down to see the girl with a huge grin on her face.

She flashes him a small glimpse of a similar shield in her large sack, newer, relatively untouched. One Unkar Plutt would never bother selling. He crouches down again, flips the fabric of her sack over it to cover the shield, and says, “Good. Let’s go.”



They reach the ship, finally, and Kylo thankfully notes that none of the other Knights are sitting in the cockpit, but it doesn't matter much, because the girl takes things into her own hands. She’s only nine, but more knowledgeable about ships than he thinks he’ll ever be, and he tells her, “Fix it and you’ll have your food.”

She doesn’t need to be told twice. A small tongue pushes from between her lips as she works on replacing the shield. He stands, watches, if only for the fact that she’s a child and she might actually do more harm than good. For all he knows, she could’ve stolen the earlier bag of parts like she’d done with the fuel pump. Every once in a while her footing threatens to slip and she nearly falls back into the large pilot chair, but straightens herself out and gets right back to work.

But it’s clear five minutes in that she knows her way, at least in a basic sense, around a ship. Kylo feels himself relax as she works on replacing the deflector shield. Her small hands aren’t quite able to manage all the tasks before her, and so he finds himself having to hold parts steady as she clinks them together.

“And this,” she says triumphantly, “plugs straight back into the concussion shield . . . right there.” Her hands drop to her sides as she looks at her work. “All done, I think. You should test it out.”

As he leads her away from the upper deck and outside the shuttle, he notes her arms and tunic are covered with grease and oil. She looks at him after a moment, frowning at his mask and heavy cloak through the blazing daylight. “Where d’you come from?” she demands. “You’re definitely not from Jakku. Not if you’ve got a working ship. . . .” She looks envious all at once. “What’s your name?”

The scavenger’s just a little girl, a nobody from this wasteland. It wouldn’t hurt. “Ren,” Kylo tells her, opting for the name everyone formally calls him. Though the second he says it, there’s a noise from the ship and the sound of the boarding ramp opening.

The girl, though, tilts her head to the side, and says, “Ben. . . ?”

“N-no,” says Kylo suddenly, through gritted teeth, because that’s not his name, not at all, damn her. “No, it’s not—”

But the girl's eyes have glazed over, as though seeing him differently. Her hands twitch. Her lips tremble. “It sounds familiar,” she says, not listening to him as his breathing starts to go haywire, and at once, her eyes are wide, her hands are grasping at his cloak for the third time that day. “Do you—do you know my family? Do you know them? Do you know if—”

“My name is not Ben!” Kylo pulls her off his clothes and drops her into the sand. “My name isn’t Ben—how dare you, you little scavenger scum?”

The girl scowls at him, the marvel of it fading away. "It’s not a big deal. Fine, your name isn’t Ben. Why are you so—”

But his mind is in hyperdrive, now, and he can hear the other Knights behind him coming out of the ship. She knows his name, she called him Ben, how dare she? She knows too much, and he can’t let her remember this, remember any of it. He’ll give her her food. He’ll give her what she needs, but suddenly he hates this little scavenger who called him Ben, because can’t she see it? He’s not Ben. There’s no way, she knows too much

He raises one hand and crouches toward her, and suddenly she shrinks back. “Wh-what are you doing?” she says, scuffling back against the sand. Her hands are red from the contact to the ground. The sand is too hot, too unbearable. “Don’t—stop it!”

“You will forget this,” he says, and at once every ounce of the Force is behind him out of his fury. His name isn't Ben! “You will forget this day. You will forget fixing this foreign ship’s ventral deflector shield. You will forget seeing me and my Knights on Jakku. You will take your food and go back to Niima Outpost, and you will not speak a word of what happened here.”

And he reaches for her mind, stretching her memories open, memories of only a couple years past, a ship rocketing toward the blue sky above Jakku, a voice screaming for the ship to come back, blurred memories of parents and the spirit of a withering, faintly recognizable old man who fades in and out of her memory—and then a barrier, and suddenly she’s screaming at him, telling him to get out of her head, that she won’t do it, and then he sees the pulse of light in the deepest part of her mind.

He gasps, withdrawing, sees her with tears staining her small cheeks. “I don’t want it,” she wails, pushing herself from the ground. “I don’t want the food—I don’t want any of it, not from you, you monster!”

The other Knights behind him, Kylo feels, are shock silent. Kylo himself raises shaking hands to his mask, feeling too confined, too confused. The girl stumbles and her teardrops make wet blotches on the sand beneath her feet. “Go away!” she screams at him. “Go away!”

 “You—” He can’t finish the sentence. He doesn’t know what to say. How could there be a someone such as she, a little scavenger girl, with the power of the Force like that, here on Jakku? Did he miss something? Did he—

She’s still crying, screaming, doing something in between; she gathers her sack in her arms and stumbles through the sand, her feet sinking as she stomps past them, and Kylo has to physically shake away the sensation of power she left in his mind. “Get back on the ship!” he commands the Knights, barely able to withhold the shakiness in his voice. “Mind the crystals. Do not leave!”

They clamber back onto the ramp, looking just as stunned as Kylo feels, and Kylo has a quick decision to make. A very quick decision. He knows instantly what he has to do and why he has to do it. He raises his hand and freezes the girl in place, moving in front of her, his cloak billowing around the sand as he does.

She stops, dropping the sack onto the sand. Her small body shudders with the Force holding her in place. Kylo purses his lips in effort as he holds it over her—he hasn’t had much practice with this trick yet, but he’s glad he knows it enough for this. “Look at me,” he orders as her wide eyes dart away from his mask. “Look at me, scavenger.”

She doesn’t look at him. She shuts her eyes, wrinkling her nose in effort to pull out of his grip.

Clearly, this person with the mask over his face does not have the trust of the young child in front of him. Kylo slowly pushes his hood down and feels for the edges of his mask, hoping that the face beneath will calm her slightly. A human face, one that looks like her own—one that, perhaps, she can read. He unlatches his mask and feels the hot air of the desert fill his space in front of his jaw. A moment later, his mask is off and his helmet is in his arms. “Look at me,” he repeats, leaning forward, voice soft.

At the sound of his unfiltered, non-distorted voice, the girl freezes and her eyes shoot open. He sees the girl’s eyes clearly now. Wide, a tinge of green in an otherwise grey-brown pair of irises, and observant despite her fear. She says nothing, swallowing, but Kylo takes the chance anyway. He releases her from the Force hold and says, “Do not run. I’m not going to hurt you.”

Still, she says nothing, but instead glares at him so sourly he has to catch himself.

“What is your name?”

“I won’t—I won’t tell you,” she says stubbornly, though she ends up holding up a hand to block out the sun from behind his head. He moves over slightly, effectively casting his shadow over her eyes. She drops her arm and scowls.

“Tell me your name,” says Kylo. “You have a great power in you. You’re untrained, but you have such potential . . . I can help you tame that power.”

“I can’t leave Jakku!” she says to him, and her eyes well with tears. “I can’t leave. Not with anyone, and not with you."

"Is it that ship I saw in your mind?" he says, his head cocking to the side ever so slightly, and a tear trails down her left cheek. "Are you waiting for someone? Family, perhaps?" Why waste your time with family, girl?

"They'll be back," she says shakily. "They will. They have to."

This scavenger, this girl who only comes up to his stomach, is stranded on a desert wasteland without a family and only a sack to her name. This scavenger, this girl whose name he does not yet know, is without food and has been for the past two days. This scavenger, this girl who is in front of him with red eyes, a stuffed nose, and a sore voice, is Force sensitive and completely ignorant of it.

He has to do it, though. He can’t let her stay here, can’t let her grow on a world with nothing—can’t let that wretched Resistance find her when he already has. “I’ve seen them,” he says, and her wide eyes go wider. “I’ve seen them, in your mind . . . I can help you find your family, if you come with me.”

“You can find. . . .” A small laugh escapes her, tiny, almost inaudible. She’s more breathless and shaky, but his words have ignited something. “You—you know them? You can . . . you’ll help me?”

“If you help me,” he tells her. “We will both be helping each other. You can learn so much. You can see your family again if you spend your time training with me.”

“Do you promise?” she says, her voice hoarse from her earlier screams.

He’ll promise anything if this girl comes with him and leaves this life behind. If she’ll become his student, his padawan, so the Resistance can’t have her. “I promise,” he says.

The girl’s lips stretch over white, small teeth. He notices one is missing and a larger tooth is growing in. A child, this child he thought was a pest. This child on this desert planet is Force sensitive. She’ll be training with him. He can hardly believe it when she nods her head, when she asks if she can just take some things she has back at Niima outpost, when she pulls him along to come with her. He can hardly believe it, that he found such a child to train. . . .

Kylo thinks to himself that he might, perhaps, impress Supreme Leader Snoke when he gets back to Starkiller Base.



“What a find,” says one of the Knights. “What a kid. Hope she doesn’t scream all the way back.”

“You’ll act toward her with utmost respect,” Kylo says, and the Knight stutters for a moment. “She will be my student when she is old enough to control the Force within her. It will take time, but she’s a guest.” No, that’s the wrong word for her. “She’s one of us. Understood?”

“A Knight?”

“If she wants,” says Kylo, and he thinks to the girl, who he feels arranges her sparse belongings within her large sack in the lower deck of the T-4a shuttle. She’d grabbed some sort of helmet, a canteen, and a number of rusted tech parts that he’d seen her put together before he left to secure the kyber crystals. He has no idea what she brought along with her, but he thinks it can’t matter too much. There’s a weird giddiness in him. He’s going to have his own apprentice, someone to train himself, someone who will look up to him—appreciate him—maybe even—

He shakes himself out of it. “She can be whatever Supreme Leader wants her to be,” he says. “Whatever she wants to be. It doesn’t matter. She’s with us, now.”

Kylo tells Vero and the other pilot Knight to start them back to Starkiller Base before descending from the upper deck of the shuttle and unlatching his mask from his face. The hyperdrive lurches them space as he finds the girl in the cargo deck in the corner with her belongings spread around her. The other Knights are sitting far away, quiet. “Hi,” she says to Kylo, her eyes alight, her hands splayed over a small worn keypad.

Once more, he crouches in front of her, making sure his mask is to his side, that she can see his face. “What are you doing, scavenger?”

“You don’t have to call me that, you know,” she says, her head bowing down again as she clicks against the keypad. “I’m a scavenger, but my name is Rey.”

Rey . . . her name is Rey. The girl’s name is Rey, this little scavenger from the desert, the little nobody child. The girl with the talent of taming the Force deep in her mind, covered in light—and her name is Rey. His little apprentice. Rey. Her name is Rey.

How fitting, he thinks, and the thought runs through his head naturally until he feels his brow draw into a frown. Fitting because . . . because why? Rey. . . .

“And you’re . . . Ren,” she says, carefully, and he exhales despite himself.

“Kylo Ren, to be precise.” Her mouth forms into an ‘o’. She tries it out on her tongue, before she decides calling him “Ren” will be enough, and she hopes “Rey” is enough for him.

“You don’t know your family name at all?” he asks her.

She shakes her head.

“You will,” he says. “It might take a while, but you’ll know.”

She gives him a smile as bright as the sun.



Rey doesn’t meet Supreme Leader Snoke when she gets there, and she won’t until she’s old enough to start training. At least, that’s what Kylo himself is told. Supreme Leader Snoke will test her from a distance, will inspect her abilities and teach her from afar—but until then, she will not train. She’ll simply spend time learning about the First Order. Learning about herself, her abilities . . . spending time with Kylo. . . .

She seems to have no qualms when he says she can’t start training just yet. She is content to follow him around like a pet, happy to receive full rations of food, excited to see the technicians around the base doing repairs in the hallways. It gets a bit frustrating, having her follow him around so much, but he isn’t complaining, not when Supreme Leader is so impressed with him, not when he is finally, finally able to make his lightsaber.

They have no specific place for her yet. She sleeps in a guarded room down the hall from Kylo. She can’t sleep with the other children on the base—she’s too special for that, handpicked from the wastelands of Jakku by Kylo himself. So she sleeps in some makeshift room, but a room nonetheless, and it has no sand, and it’s lit at night, and she gets food, and she’s happy.

Sometimes, at night, Kylo can feel the Force—awakened a bit within her when he’d tried to trick her on Jakku—whisper to him as she dreams in her room. Little innocent dreams that keep him up sometimes as he meditates on the kyber crystals in front of him. Dreams of an island in the middle of an ocean. Dreams of faceless parents, faces that vanish the older she gets. Dreams of a spirit of a man whose face she can no longer see, who whispers in her mind. “These are your first steps,” says the spirit, and it’s the only thing that remains in her dreams even when the man is no longer recognizable. These are your first steps. These are your first steps.

The little scavenger remembers none of it in the morning. What she does in her spare time is fiddle with the parts she’d brought from Jakku, which he later learns is a flight simulator she tries to put together herself. He offers a real one for her to work with, but she only ignores him, that little tongue poking out from her mouth in thought as she latches the parts together and tries to get them to work.

Each night, the Force beckons to him a little stronger. A little brighter, like a star in the night. Kylo thinks, in a year, she might be ready to take her first steps.