AN: I split the first chapter in two, here is the rest.
Chapter two - The adventure begins
"Wait, hold your fire."
It is Lor San Tekka who comes to their rescue.
The villagers look doubtful but do as he says.
The old explorer walks over to Ben, inspecting him like he is truly seeing him for the first time. "Why did you help us?"
"Lor San Tekka, he still has his lightsaber!" Someone from the village screams like the old man is walking straight into a deathtrap.
Lor San Tekka ignores the warning and stands before Ben who shrugs, turns of his lightsaber and puts it back into his hilt. "It was the right thing to do."
Even though Ben himself is technically unarmed, the villagers do not put down their weapons but he can feel how their tension levels drop down tremendously.
That can not been said about his new ally, the defected trooper, as they are still in a firing range, and the fact that it did not calm him in any way down that Ben unarmed himself rather it made him more scared if anything. So the trooper trembles behind his back like a leaf in a desert storm.
"What made you change your mind?" Lor San Tekka keeps interrogating Ben, who sighs tiredly and looks at him with a puppy eyes, longingly like he wants to go back to the farm where he grew up on. "I just want to go back home."
If the villagers were confused before that is nothing compare to how they feel now. They murmur and whisper in loud voices.
"Kylo Ren is homesick?"
"Does he even have a home?"
"No, this not Kylo Ren." Lor San Tekka tits his head to side. "Is Kylo Ren gone?"
No, I am far from gone. You may have won this battle but I will win the war. You shall see.
"Gone? He's right there." The villagers keep on murmuring while they lower their weapons.
"Is Lor San Tekka becoming senile?"
Ben is sick of this nonsense, as this is getting him nowhere. His eyes meet the ones of the young pilot that tried to shoot him before. The pilot looks to be the one not trusting him the most, judging by his scowling face and the way that he points the blaster at him.
Thanks to the force, Ben knows that man is part of the resistance.
Great...the guy who hates me the most of all the crowd...but that was to be inspected. I'm not really that popular with resistance..
He is my ticket out of here, not the cheapest one and certainly the hardest one to get...but also the only one.
"You, take me to the resistance." Ben points at the pilot, mustering every bit of courage and command technique he knows to ask him...
The pilot becomes livened. "My name is not you! It's Poe Dameron and I don't trust you one bit."
Poe Dameron...the best pilot of the resistance. My luck just turned...that is if I can somehow convince him to help me.
FN2187 gets more confused as the things unfold. He asks, where he is still hiding behind his back. "The resistance...sir, I thought you were going home..."
Ben turns to the trooper. "The general is my mother."
"Oh and so what? Do you want to go back to mommy?" Poe scoffs.
Ben turns back to him. "Yes."
Poe and the others seems to be taken a little aback by the sincerity of his answer. Lor San Tekka only smiles knowingly and strokes his beard, like this had been his plan along.
Damn old coot...he was right about me...
"But most of all I want to deliver that map to her. Where is the map?"
"I gave it to him." Lor San Tekka indicates the pilot who can't possibly hate Ben more than he already does and stand beside him with crossed arms and a fierce glare, that reminds Ben of certain someone in his family...or two certain someones...that Ben will have to face sooner or later...at least one of them...
I can worry about that meeting later...this is now. Okay...so now I have two favours to asks of him...I could try to ask for it nicely instead of commanding him...yeah, that could work...
"You...eh Poe...purr...per...please give me the map."
I haven't had to say please in a very...long time...
For a moment Poe seems to want to laugh at his failed attempt to do what even children know how to do perfectly. But just as quickly as the grin is about to appear, it disappears in rage, far more fitting of a darkside user then a rebel fighting for justice.
"And why should I give to you?! You want to destroy the last Jedi!" Poe spits in his eyes, just in case Ben was getting the wrong idea that there was a tiny bit inside Poe that was starting to like him.
Ben clenches his teeth and wipes his eyes with his long sleeve.
Don't kill him...don't kill him...calm down...damn that Poe is dense...but I can understand that he does not trust me right off the bat...
"No, that was Snoke's stupid idea. I don't answer to him any longer."
Everyone gasp over the fact that he didn't call him supreme leader and to the boot, stupid and also the fact the he hadn't sliced Poe in half after having spit on him, in the eyes no less. Even Poe seems to be shocked to be alive and stares at Ben, like he's not one of the worst person alive but maybe someone a bit more tolerable.
Perhaps, he is finally realizing I'm not evil anymore...I hope...
"So you have truly defected from the First Order?" Lor San Tekka asks, the only one in village beside Poe who dares to talk to him directly.
"Yes, I have."
Truly? I saved the villagers from execution, disarmed the troopers and made a commanding officer flee...what more to do you want from me?
"This is not just a trick...?" Lor San Tekka asks warily, like he thinks this all one magic trick, ending with Ben going up in smoke and Kylo Ren appearing again and cutting him and Poe in half.
"No." Ben hope that is enough. He has no idea what he can do more to get his trust except maybe break his lightsaber in half but of course he would never do that...
To Ben's great relief, Lor San Tekka only smiles and says:"Your mother will be so pleased."
Ben could only nod to that.
That's why I'm doing it.
All the villagers have starting to relax a bit, making Poe, the pointal dark-side user if he is force sensitive to be the only one, still not trusting Ben, even though he had mercifully spared his life...twice, counting when Poe tried to shoot him for attempting to kill Lor San Tekka.
Poe walks over to Ben in strides, with his blaster aloft. "You...You can't just waltz into the resistance base and expect no consequences. I will have to take you prisoner!"
He attacked me twice, still lives and still does not trust me...those rebel...scum are so damn stubborn in their rightfulness...everything is so black and white to them, no grey area...
Lor San Tekka raises his hand between the blaster and Ben and shakes his head disapprovingly. "The general wouldn't want that."
"I...he's a notorious war criminal...not some cuddly...teddy bear!" Poe yells in frustration. "Has everyone forgot that?!"
From a war criminal to a teddy bear is a bit too much of a stretch...does this guy not have any middle ground in anything? Sure I was darkside once, but not completely and now I'm lightside but not...
"No, that was Kylo Ren. This is Ben Solo." Lor San Tekka says in a tired teacher-like voice, like someone who has tried explaining the same thing, over and over again.
Poe can't believe his own ears over this absurd logic. He shakes his head like he's in some weird dream. He blinks, when one thing seems to grab his attention specially. "Wait, Solo...is your dad...?"
"Don't remind me." Ben snaps at Poe, finally giving a tiny bit into the anger he has been feeling against him this entire time. And when he gives into anger, Kylo appears again, though only in his head.
Yet, you have acted with the same bravado like him this entire time. He would've been so proud...
I doubt he will be as forgiving as your "dearest mother."
I don't plan on meeting him.
Good, as he will undoubtedly "kill" you for all the unnecessary grievance you have cost your mother.
"Where is that map, Poe? I am not returning without the map!" Ben keeps snapping at Poe, who blinks in surprise over his sudden mood change.
You think that will make up for everything, do you? You think your mother will open her arms for you and everything will be forgotten? You're delusional. You life in a dream world.
Poe looks in disbelief at Lor San Tekka who says in encouraging voice. "Go on, tell him."
At last Poe admits defeat. He sighs. "It's in a white and orange BB unit. One of its kind."
"And what is that unique droid called?"
"Like you can talk, Ben...Kylo Ren."
It was Snoke not me! I wanted to be called Darth Grandson or Darth Ben! At least Darth, like grandpa, otherwise what's the point! But no Snoke didn't allow me...
That was kinda jerkish of him. I see that now...
"Where is BB-8?" Ben looks around for the droid.
When Poe doesn't answer him, Ben asks again in a harsher voice. "Where...is it?"
Poe shrugs off handly. "I sent him away."
Ben looks around the village, till his eyes are looking over the horizon, into the burning hot desert.
No! It can't be!
"So what you are telling him is...that it's somewhere...out there...in this endless vast desert?!" Ben points disbelieving into the desert.
No...really? So this won't be as easy as you thought? You poor baby...
"Poe, why did you send it away?" Lor San Tekka rebukes him.
"Hey! How was I supposed to know that Kylo Ren here would turn out to be a boy scout?"
"I'm not Kylo Ren."
Poe grind his teeth. "Fine, Ben...but you are dressed like him."
Ben shrugs. "I happen to like black."
Poe shakes his head. "You're impossible."
FN2187, who has kept quiet so far, points at himself in realisation. "Hey, so that was why you chose me?"
Ben turns from Poe to the trooper, not seeing anything black about the white armour but he doesn't comment on that. "No, I would have chosen you anyway."
You wanted to get away too...
"Thank you..umm, sir."
Ben picks up the argument with the insufferable pilot. "Then we must search the desert until we find it."
"Wait we? It's my droid. You can just go on our own to the resistance. I think it's wonderful to stroll through the desert in that black attire..."
"Stop saying black!" FN2187 yells desperately, like a little kid who wants get his parents to stop fighting.
"Why?" Poe lifts his eyebrows in question.
"It confuses me...or something. I'm not used to not wearing a helmet and be recognisable...I think..."
Ben knock on his helmet. "You're still wearing it."
FN2187 jumps up. "Oh...I...you are the one not wearing helmet...sorry got confused...everything is so confusing."
Indeed it is...
"Take off your helmet." Poe says, not commanding but more in a curious voice.
"I'm allowed to...sir?" FN2187 turns to Ben, who just nods.
The trooper slowly removes his helmet, like it's a holy ritual instead of something done each day after work. He reveals his young, sweaty dark skinned face and dark hair, flattened after the helmet, a stark contrast from the white but dirty stormtrooper armour.
"Hey, you're much cuter than I thought!" Poe blinks him teasingly.
"Uh...thanks..I guess." FN2187 looks to Ben for help who only shrugs.
That pilot probably flirts with everything...
Poe looks sharply at Ben and points rudely at him. "But you! You can do whatever the hell you want, as long it's far away from me!"
"I'm not leaving without that map!" Ben shouts in commanding voice, that would make Darth Vader proud. Or at least he hope so and it didn't sound whiney. He wasn't used to order people around without his mask...
Wait...why do I still care about what Darth Vader thinks?
He was cool.
Yeah, he was...despite all the killing...
The killing made him cool.
I don't agree with that...
You never agree with me anymore..
Are you really crying?
"Poe, you better give up." Lor San Tekka scowls at him, like Poe is the one making trouble for everyone but not Ben.
"Okay, fine. I hope my X-wing will be able to be repaired or there will be hell to pay!" Poe jumps to his x-wing and checks the damage out. He tisks in annoyance when he sees the smoke coming from the engine, no doubt after the blaster shots from the invading troopers before.
"You can always find a new ship..." Ben rolls his eyes over the drama.
Poe turns to him with a frown. "I am going on my x-wing or we will walk...You can't really talk, your ship is still over there." He points in envy at this command shuttle, the only ship left from the First Order in the area.
Ben looks to his ship and back to Poe. "It may have been broken..."
Poe lifts an eyebrow.
"By me..." Ben shamefully admits and turns away from him, so he can't see him blush.
Or rather Kylo Ren...I don't do things like that...
It was still your fault...for pissing me off! You are still doing it!
"Figures. And what about you, are you also coming with us? There are only two seats in my x-wing and I would prefer you waaay over him." Poe starts repairing his x-wing while occasionally casting a glance to the now helmetless trooper.
"Me?" The trooper points at himself, he looks at his helmet in his hand, hands it over to Ben, possibly for safe keeping and walks over to Poe. "I guess so...yes...I'm coming with you...I think..."
Poe looks up from his repairing. "So you are not taking your orders from him?" Poe points at Ben, like he's some dirt under his shoes instead of a human being with feelings.
"I..I don't know...sir?" FN2187 looks once more for help from Ben.
He probably doesn't even know who you are any more...do you know who you are?
Ben just stares at the two helmets in his hands. He throws the trooper one the ground but keeps his own.
It could be useful later on...
FN2187 is still waiting for answer from him but Poe answers instead while wiping sweat of his brow: "Well, I say you're not! You're free now! What's your name?" He wipes his oily hands on a handkerchief before giving him a handshake.
"Wow, that's a handful, I'm gonna call you...Finn." Poe smiles and puts a hand on his the shoulder.
"F-N...Finn...?" Ben scoffs.
"Shut up." Poe snaps at him.
"Finn, I like it." Finn smiles happily.
"Welcome aboard kid." Poe puts forth his fist and they fistbumb.
Finn then turns to Ben with a smile, ready to give him a fistbumb as well. Poe however looks annoyed that Finn is replicating his gesture with his former enemy.
Ben is startled over the camaraderie shown by his former trooper. He hesitates for a minute but then he gives him a fistbumb, with his helmet free hand as well.
I'm finally going home...
Ben smiles for the first time in years.
Or at least...this will be one hell of an adventure...
Next up: Meeting Rey.