September 3, 2020

Isaiah the Gray, Part 19


Discovering the Catalyst

“What’s a Catalyst?” asks Isaiah who is barely able to contain his curiosity.

Corban remains stunned, not able to speak for a few moments. “I don’t know if I’m the one who answers that question. But tell me, was there another on the surface? Or did this device react to your presence?”

Isaiah and Jimmy look to one another. “Why do you ask?” asks Jimmy.

“It is said by some in the galaxy that there was a…pact among some of our ancestors,” replies Corban. “A…test of sorts of their progeny and their kin. As today, there were spiritual, philosophical, and physical battles over the Light and Dark interpretations of our connections to the Force. It is said that the Jedi, Sith, and even the clandestine Gray fought to a standstill with no resolution.”

Skeptical as ever, Isaiah and Jimmy stare down Corban. They know he’s telling the truth; but still, a pact among ancient enemies seems unlikely. Un-phased, Corban continues his history lesson.

The Ancestor’s Pact

“So the sides came together and did something no other cycle had done: they agreed to disagree, in a manner of speaking. But more than that, the legend says that their agreement was to let the future settle their debate for them, in a test that’s as fair as possible.”

Corban pauses a moment and allows Isaiah and Jimmy to consider his story.

“But no one knows how,” continues the Jedi. “And over the years, a legend was passed down to the Keepers of History of the Jedi Order, and ultimately, to me: that there were once great Force Catalysts, powerful artifacts of hyper-concentrated Force potential, which somehow were tied to this pact our ancestors made. I believe I am seeing one through your memory, hard as it is to believe.”

“And you feel what we experienced on Korriban could have been…an interface with one of these Catalysts?” asks Jimmy.

“Yes,” replies Corban matter-of-factly. “And if I’m right, it could explain some of what’s been happening to you.”

“How so?” asks Isaiah.

Putting the Pieces Together

“Concentrate on your connection to the Force,” says the Blind Jedi. “Does it feel like you? Or something, or someone, different?”

Isaiah clears his mind and focuses on his connection to the Force. “It’s hard to say,” he responds. “I’ve never known anything different. Since Korriban, the connection has certainly gotten stronger, more fluid, more complete in a way.”

Corban pauses, and paces back and forth, pondering for several moments. “If you were to encounter another Catalyst, how do you feel you would react?”

“I didn’t have much of a choice last time,” answers Isaiah. “But, even still, I would react the same. I would take answers from it if it had any to give.”

“Zero-You, awaken,” commands Corban. The assault droid powers back on to life, waking from its forced slumber.

The Next Step

“You rang?” he says.

“Please, come here,” says Corban calmly.

“Anything you say,” responds Zero-You a bit more caustically than necessary.

Zero-You approaches the group. Corban reaches behind the droid’s head, right above where his spine you would be, and withdraws a data chip of some kind. Zero-You doesn’t look particularly pleased at being poked and prodded in this manner.

“This chip may have the location of a second Catalyst,” says Corban. “I was hoping to explore it on my own when I retired. I sense the Light within you Isaiah. I would be honored to accompany you there, if you’ll have me.”

Isaiah takes the chip. “AI, please set coordinates for the location on this chip. Keep us on high alert throughout the journey.”

Isaiah turns to Corban. “The Jedi never cared about me when I suffered. They preach and preach but their words ring hollow to those without the means to live decently. Do not attempt to turn me Corban for there is nothing to turn.”

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