I own nothing but the plot, and not even all of that.

Nar Shaddaa

It was nearing dawn in the western province of Nar Shaddaa. You couldn't really tell the time by the light, of course. The constant glow of electric light vanished any hint of the night on the city-planet. Like Coruscant, the capital of the Republic, Nar Shaddaa was a city that encompassed an entire world. The entire surface was covered with buildings and streets. But while Coruscant featured skyscrapers with luxurious apartments and high-end restaurants, Nar Shaddaa had crumbling high-rises filled with communal living pods and seedy bars. Instead of senators and politicians, there were crime overlords and the people they preyed upon.

A small disturbance in the air, less even than a breeze, made its way down a street in a less than reputable neighbourhood. It swept into an unlit alcove where a large, duraplast door stood. This was crime lord Jabari Retter's back door. The tip of a thin stick of wood emerged from thin air and pointed itself at the door lock.

"Alohomora," an unseen voice whispered. With a soft click, the door unlocked. The barely visible bit of wood disappeared again. Moving silently on well-lubricated hinges, the door swung open for a moment, then closed again.

In a room deep within the complex, a red light started to flash insistently. A soft beeping drew the attention of a security officer. Seeing the light, he silenced the audible alarm. Reaching over to another set of controls, he flipped a switch. This activated a video camera that was hidden in a lighting fixture on the ceiling near the alarming door. The officer focused the camera feed on the door, then swept it in a 360-degree arc, looking for intruders.

Inside the door was a long hallway filled with small rooms that were clearly holding cells. This was Jabari's personal prison. If you ended up owing him money and you or your family couldn't make the payments, you were confined in here for a month. The only way to be freed before your sentence was up was for someone on the outside somehow came up with the money. If you didn't have the money raised for you, you were 'released' at the end of your sentence straight into the arena. Being released meant you were being sent to the arena to fight for your life. If you managed to survive three rounds, you were actually released. You were then sent a bill for your next payment, which was the amount you owed in full. Another way to find yourself locked in this prison was to be captured while searching through Jabari Retter's personal data files.

Seeing nothing amiss, the guard manning the security panel reset the alarm. He dutifully grabbed a datapad and filled out a report for maintenance.

The slight disturbance in the air currents was now in the hall, having entered through the door. A maintenance man walked towards the door. He had been dispatched to investigate and repair the alarm. The air disturbance entered an unused cell to avoid the man. Even though he glanced into the room and looked straight at the disturbance, all the maintenance man saw was the wall behind it.

The mechanic removed a panel from the door and plugged a probe in. The tip of the probe glowed a solid green. He removed it and plugged into another spot. Green again. Another. Green. The mechanic removed the probe, replaced the panel, gathered up his tools, and left. The disturbance moved back into the hallway as soon as he had turned the corner.

The small sliver of wood appeared in front of the door lock for Cell 217. The voice again whispered "alohomora," and paused as the door unlocked. The door slid open again, and the disturbance entered the cell, the door closing behind it.

In the security office, the officer noted a different light began to blink.

"Another one?" asked a man shown on a video screen above the panel. He was impeccably dressed and spoke in an accented, but meticulously articulated voice.

"Yes," answered the security officer. "The first alarm was for the rear door, now the door for Cell 217. I've confirmed by live and recorded video feed that no one entered while either door was open, and the prisoner is still accounted for in his cell."

"I don't like taking chances," the man on the video screen said with a frown.

In Cell 217, the disturbance approached the man lying on a metal bunk that was welded to the wall.

"What are you doing here, Potter?" a low, raspy voice asked.

Slipping off his invisibility cloak, Harry Potter became visible and released the bindings on the prisoner's wrists and ankles.

"Getting you out of here, Master Amani," Harry answered.

"Obviously," said his lightsaber trainer. "What I asked, though, was why are YOU here. I hardly think Kendet approved a half-trained Jedi whelp for this job."

Amani got up out of bed, painfully. He had taken an uncounted number of beatings over the past week, and he knew they were softening him up to throw him in the arena.

"I was considered the best equipped for the job," Harry answered, slipping his invisibility cloak into a pouch secured to his robes. The cloak was fairly large but fit into the pouch with no additional bulk. "If you'd prefer, though, I can always go back to base and tell them you'd like a different rescuer."

"Cute, Potter," Amani said. "These guards are no joke. They caught me, after all. It took twenty of them, but they have the numbers. What's your plan to get us out of here, or did you just volunteer to keep me company as I die?"

"Can you walk?" Harry asked. "I got in through the back door, which isn't that far from here."

"Which was also alarmed," said an amused, accented voice from behind Harry.

Turning, Harry Potter and Master Amani were confronted by a dozen guards. Standing between the Jedi and the guards was Keyon Hayley, Jabari Retter's personal bodyguard and chief enforcer.

Master Toma Kendet was worried about his Padawan. He had not felt right sending the young boy to infiltrate a crime lord's prison and had objected strenuously to the plan. It was felt by some on the council, though, that Harry's magic was a tool that should be utilized. Others, usually the older, more conservative council members, felt Harry's magic should not be used at all.

Once Harry had demonstrated that not only could his Alohomora charm quickly and easily unlock doors that even the best Jedi slicers had difficulty with, but his invisibility cloak could allow him to infiltrate the prison undetected, the balance of opinion shifted. The council deemed young Harry to be the best option to retrieve the captured Master Amani. Toma had argued for a larger force of Jedi to storm the palace, but it was decided that a direct confrontation would only increase the chances of the captured Jedi being killed before he could be extracted. Harry had certainly wanted to go, and Toma could not argue against the decision of the council.

Harry, however, was now well past his window of operation. He should have left the complex a half hour ago, with or without Master Amani. With no communications from his Padawan, Toma knew that he was almost certainly captured. Knowing the reputation of Jabari Retter, Toma knew a rescue operation would have to be executed swiftly.

Fortunately, such a rescue was planned into their mission profile as a plan B. Unfortunately, the assault squadron of troopers that were supposed to be backing the Jedi up on this mission had been scrubbed on launch due to technical issues with their dropship. No other squadron or dropships were available at this time. The Republic had a very small presence on Nar Shaddaa, which was nicknamed The Smuggler's Moon by the less than law-abiding residents. Deciding that desperate times called for desperate measures, Toma brought his communicator to his lips and whispered into it.

The guards marched the two Jedi down the corridor in the opposite direction of the back door. The prisoners were shackled at the ankles and wrists. They were searched by rough hands. Harry's lightsaber and communicator were hidden along with his invisibility cloak in his Mokeskin pouch, which was concealed in a fold of his Jedi robes, and further hidden with a notice-me-not charm. His wand was also overlooked thanks to the same charm on the wand holster strapped to his wrist. Harry had learned his lesson on securing his gear in the magically enchanted bag. It could hold ten times as much gear as he usually carried with no increase in bulk whatsoever.

Keyon Hayley was all manners and politeness as he ushered the Jedi to the arena floor.

"I do hope this isn't an inconvenience for you," Hayley said to Amani, speaking as if he were a maitre d' who was ever so sorry that his clients' favourite balcony seat was unavailable. "I'm sure you understand, though. Security must be upheld, after all."

The Iridonian Zabrak Jedi Master was not known for having the longest temper, and he was clearly growing annoyed at the simpering tone of the crime lord's key enforcer. Amani never allowed his temper to run amok, however, or to cause him to underestimate his opponent. Keyon Hayley was not a maitre d', and the bodyguard had not risen to the rank he had by playing nice, however polite his tone.

Harry and Amani were led to a large arena with raised bleachers looking down onto the field of combat. Their shackles were removed, and they were shoved out onto the arena floor. Various obstacles were strewn around the dirt surface, and four openings to the service tunnels underneath the arena divided the circular floor into four quadrants. A variety of handheld melee weapons littered the arena. Instead of trying to scavenge for weapons, Harry retrieved two cylinders from his Mokeskin pouch. One was gold with a mirror finish, and the other was longer and a dull grey. He tossed the longer cylinder to Master Amani, who caught it.

That was all the time they were given to arm themselves before the first of their opponents were brought in. There were seven of them. These were volunteers from Jabari Retter's guards who moonlighted in the arena on days off for extra money. They usually fought gamblers who were too far down in the chips or some poor lowlife who had the misfortune of crossing paths with Jabari or Keyon.

"Don't show them any mercy, Potter," Master Amani said to his young student. "They are killers, and they won't show you any."

"Yes, Master," Harry said, steeling himself for what would shortly come.

Standing on a raised balcony above the audience was the crime lord Jabari Retter himself. Keyon Hayley stood by his side. The crime lord addressed the crowd which filled the stands.

"My citizens, welcome!" he called out. His voice, amplified by a PA system, was accented very similarly to Keyon Hayley, but without the simpering politeness.

"These two criminals were caught infiltrating my palace," he accused. "The man was captured in my personal data centre, rifling through my private files. Showing they are truly nothing but criminals, the Jedi then sent a child to rescue him. This boy was caught in his compatriot's cell, preparing him for escape." Retter threw his hands out wide. "My daughter, the gem of this community, has been kidnapped! Taken from her loving family by my greatest enemy! Only 19 years old and just starting to spread her wings!" he despaired.

"What do the Jedi do?" he asked the crowd. "Do they help me retrieve my jewel? No! They sneak like thieves into my home to ransack my files and steal my prisoners!" He lowered his head and his voice as he pronounced his sentence. "For this, there can be only one punishment. The only punishment is it within my authority as the leader of this community to sentence them to. Death in the arena!"

With that pronouncement, the guards advanced on the Jedi to the roared pleasure of the watching crowd. All were armed with vibroswords, and one also carried a mace. It was clear that execution in the arena was intended to be slow, bloody, and painful.

Harry depressed a switch that was flush with the handle of the golden cylinder in his hand. A bright, ruby red blade of light erupted from the handle with an electric snap. The sound settled into an ominous hum as green and gold gems of light chased each other through ribbons of light in the depth of the blade. Master Amani held the cylinder Harry had tossed him horizontally in front of him, and some of the guards shivered in fear as first one, then a second indigo blue blade slid out of the handle. Harry held his lightsaber in a defensive posture with his left hand and readied his wand with his right. He knew that once the fighting started, he would not likely get another chance to attack at range, so he targeted the guard carrying the deadliest looking weapon and fired a tickling hex. The guard went down, laughing uncontrollably and twisting this way and that to escape the unseen fingers. The other guards stared at him for a moment, then charged at the Jedi.

Master Amani was whirling and dodging, blocking attacks from three of the guards as the remaining three focused on Harry. The young Jedi, now with both hands grasping his lightsaber, defended against his assailants. He moved between them and threw their attacks off. It was quickly obvious that two of of the guards had Cortosis-Weave Vibroswords, but one had only the standard model. The standard model, not lightsaber resistant, was now a smoking ruin, and it's wielder soon followed. Back and forth, parry and lunge, he alternated strikes against both his remaining opponents. One of the guards took a step back to gain some distance. Harry positioned himself between his opponents and switched from defence to an attack stance on the closest guard. He drove the man back, and thus increased his distance from the first guard. The man who had stepped away was not retreating, though. He removed a bulky, short-barreled gun from his belt and aimed it at the young Jedi's back. Pulling the trigger, he fired a rocket-propelled razorwire net at the Padawan.

Alerted to the danger by the Force, Harry leapt into the air in a force enhanced backflip that had the metal net pass safely underneath him… and straight into the guard's partner. The net swept the man off his feet, and the rockets propelled him into the wall. Barbs on the rockets dug into the wall and began retracting the net. The man screamed as the wires dug into his skin, leaving a gridlike maze of red on every visible bit of skin. The screams soon stopped. The remaining guard stood and stared in horror as the net he had fired killed his partner. Harry, landing behind him, took advantage of the distraction and dispatched the distracted guard. He turned to see Master Amani finishing off the last of his opponents. They regrouped in the centre of the arena, listening to the jeering of the mob as bets were taken and argued over. The two Jedi assumed a defensive posture again, knowing more opponents would soon be sent their way. They didn't have to wait long. A fresh group of guards ran into the arena. They noticed with alarm that these were more heavily armed and armoured. There were also twelve of them. They readied themselves for battle. Without warning, blaster bolts flashed from behind the Jedi, and half of their opponents dropped dead! The remaining gladiators stopped their advance in confusion and stared at the Jedi, thinking they had done some Force magic on their fallen teammates.

The guards quickly came to the realization that their opponents were no longer outnumbered when at least thirty heavily armed men and women came pouring out of the tunnel access points! They all had shaved heads with red chevrons tattooed on their skulls, sending a message to all that they were members of the Red Skulls. This rival gang had a blood feud with Jabari Retter and his family, and they were here to extract payment.

Additional Retter troops came running to bolster the numbers of the guards who were now seriously outnumbered as more and more Red Skull poured into the arena. Half of the audience panicked and scrambled out of the stands. Harry and Amani used the distraction to position themselves behind cover. It looked very much like a blood bath was in the making, and they didn't want to be caught in the middle.

As the last of the Red Skulls filled the arena and aimed their weapons at the Retter forces, Toma Kendet strode into the throng. He was yelling for both sides to put their weapons down, that no more blood needed to be spilt this day. It was clear that the Red Skull, while not hostile to him, were not going to listen to his calls for peace. The Retter forces were even less likely to throw down their arms. Generations of bad blood took precedence. Both sides were yelling at each other. Yells that ranged from wordless screams of rage to calls for vengeance for fallen comrades, to shouted declarations calling into question the legitimacy of their opponents birth were exchanged. The situation quickly reached its boiling point, and one shot was fired from a Red Skull combatant. The red energy bolt erupted from the blaster rifle and flashed on its way to its target. It was passed by ten answering bolts of blue energy heading the other way as the Retter forces returned fire.

Then, without warning, the world stopped. The first energy bolt froze in mid-air and then just stayed there. The answering blue bolts also stopped and stayed hanging several feet above the dirt floor of the arena. Not one blaster bolt from either side travelled further than 20 feet before they just stopped, hanging in the air like a Wookie Lifeday decoration. Both sides fired again, and dozens of blasts of energy travelled across the divide between the two forces and then just stopped. An angry buzzing noise zapped and sizzled as the bolts of energy struggled against the unseen force that prevented them from completing their journey. All attempts to fire quickly ceased.

In the middle of the arena stood Toma Kendet. His face was a stoic mask of concentration. His hands were extended out to either side of him, making him look like he was stopping traffic to let school children cross. Everyone, audience and combatant alike, stared at Kendet. They then turned their gaze to the bolts of energy that were clearly struggling to keep flying forward. Then back to the master Jedi who was calmly violating at least two known laws of physics. Weapons lowered to the ground as everyone stared in awe at this show of power.

One person in the audience broke into a run for the exit. This triggered the remaining crowd to exit the stands, many of them losing all composure and stampeding out! Everyone on the arena floor who was in the path of one of the deadly bolts of energy slowly shifted out of the line of fire. No one wanted to trust that the Jedi could hold all of the shots back indefinitely, nor that he would. Once everyone was out of the direct line of fire, Toma released the bolts of energy! They leapt past their intended targets to explode against the walls in a shower of sparks! All of the combatants stood without speaking, not sure of what they were supposed to do now. This was definitely outside of the scope of their training.

"Always knew how to make an entrance, didn't you?" Master Amani asked Toma. Toma Kendet did not answer. He was staring up at the platform above. Jabari Retter still stood at the railing, looking down in disbelief.

The crime lord shot a nervous glance to where his bodyguard had been standing, but Keyon Hayley had suddenly remembered an appointment he was dreadfully late for and was nowhere in sight. Jabari looked back down to where the Jedi Master was still glaring at him.

"Jabari Retter!" Master Kendet called out. "I wish to have a word with you!"

Jabari Retter sat at his seat at the conference table. He was waiting for the other participants to arrive. It was quite disconcerting, dealing with these Jedi, he thought. He was a kingpin in his trade, a leader in his community, and the wealthiest man he personally knew. One encounter with a Jedi and he felt like he was an errant schoolboy waiting outside the schoolmaster's office to be disciplined. Jedi Master Toma Kendet sat at the other end of the conference table with his arms crossed, staring at Jabari. Two schoolmasters, actually. That Iridonian Zabrak Jedi was staring at him, too.

That was even worse, Jabari though. The man just looked like a devil with those horns and tattoos, and the glare that spoke of all the things he'd like to do to take revenge if he just let slip his control a little. He still felt justified in imprisoning the Jedi Master. He had been caught red-handed rummaging through private files. Surely he had some rights to privacy in his own home, didn't he? It was not likely the Jedi would see it that way, he thought.

Then there was the boy. He stood at parade rest beside the Zabrak. That boy had somehow passed into his fortress-like a ghost. He had watched that same small boy jump 20 feet in the air as if it were nothing. The same small boy he had sentenced to death.

Jabari looked up as the conference room door slid open. To his shock and anger, Nic Strul walked in. The red chevron tattooed on his shaved head was outlined in gold, showing all who saw him that he was the head of his clan. Xeth Strul, Nic's son, accompanied him.

"Must I sit at the same table as the scum that took my daughter?" Jabari snapped at the Jedi. As soon as the words left his lips, his daughter Jaszu walked in. Her beautiful hair had not been shaved, as he had feared when the heathens took her, and she looked as if she had been treated well.

"Jaszu!" he cried out as he rose from the table. He ran to her and held her in his arms. "Are you alright, my jewel?" he asked.

"I'm fine, Papa," she answered.

"You see?" said Nic Strul, "She's fine. Just as I told you." His voice was low and sounded like he was talking through a mouthful of gravel. Nic looked at Jabari with a critical eye. "You're not looking healthy, Jabi," he noted. "You should take better care of yourself."

"How can I when you go stealing my only daughter!" Jabari accused.

"Stealing?" Nic asked, with a look of complete innocence on his face. "That's a pretty powerful accusation, Jabi," he said. His voice sounded extremely disappointed.

"Scrap it, Nicky," Jabari snapped. "I know you took her, just as I know you want something to give her back. Name your terms!"

"I honestly have no idea what you're talking about," Nic countered. "We didn't take her. She came to us. Of her own free will, no less."

Harry, watching the back and forth between the two clan leaders did a quick visual scan of Jaszu Retter. She was a short, attractive girl with long black hair. Her violet eyes were quite striking, and very nearly glowed with their own light. It was those eyes he saw dart over to Xeth, Nic Strul's son. Glancing over to the young man, Harry saw an anguished expression on his face for a moment, before the gangster prince schooled it back to one of indifference.

"She would never!" denied Jabari. "She has been warned since birth to stay clear of the likes of you traitors!"

"There you go again," sighed Nic. "There was a betrayal between your family and mine, Jabi, but it wasn't us that did the betraying. It was your grandfather who negotiated the contract with SyntheTech, and your grandfather who left us holding the bag when he skipped off with the shipment."

"We lost everything that day!" yelled Jabari.

"And you think we didn't?" Nic returned. "SyntheTech wanted their shipment, and he had provided them falsified shipping transfers that said we had it," he accused.

Toma closed his eyes for a moment and took a breath.

"I think we can all see that there is a history of bad behaviour, likely on both families parts," the Jedi Master said. "It happened two generations ago, and it is time you both moved on."

"May I ask a question?" asked Harry "Jaszu, did you run away, or were you taken?" The Padawan had listened to all of the bickerings between the grown men as he was going to and felt like cutting down to the meat of the issue.

Jaszu looked scared to be asked so directly, but glanced again at Xeth and steeled herself for the outburst she knew would be coming from her father.

"I was not kidnapped," she answered.

"There, you see?" said Nic. "She came to us of her own free will, and that is totally legal."

"Jaszu?" Jabari said with a stricken look on his face. "What do you mean?"

"Xeth," Harry called to the young man. Xeth, like his father, had a red chevron tattooed on his shaven head, but his was surrounded by a silver band, indicating that he was the heir apparent.

"Yes?" Xeth started. While the shaved head and tattoos made him look like a tribal prince, he didn't command the presence that his father did. He sounded very young.

"How long have you been in love with her," Harry asked.

After the yelling died down from both parties, where each clan leader denied that their progeny could possibly be involved with the other, Xeth was finally able to answer.

"About three years," he said. The arguing suddenly stopped as both men stared at the young man in disbelief.

"What is this?" growled Nic. "You said you were just friends with the girl."

"I wanted to tell you," Xeth exclaimed, "but I knew you wouldn't listen."

"This is your mother's fault, I swear it," grumbled Nic. "She poured all that 'romance' syrup down your throat when you were a lad, and you've been soft on it ever since."

"Listen, Father," Xeno said. "We used to be legit. We used to be respectable. You used to be able to walk down the street, and people would shake your hand and thank you for the good you did to the community. You and Grandfather. I want that again."

"We can't have that anymore," yelled Nic, "and that girl is part of the reason why!"

"She wasn't even born when that happened, Father," Xeth retorted, "and neither was I!" Xeth looked down at his lap for a moment, considering if he should continue.

"What?" his father asked. "What is it?"

"I got an opportunity," Xeth said, softly.

"On what?" Nic asked. "If you're going to tell me you're gambling now..."

"No, it's not like that!" Xeth protested. "It's a legit business. I got word that TerraTech is planning on renovating a lot of the older housing stacks in the Western Province. They're going to need storage space and warehousing in this area."

"So?" said Nic. "You don't have a warehouse."

"I can get one," Xeth said. "When old Luc Tikov died, the textile plant he ran went out of business. It was going out of business anyway, but the whole company collapsed when he died. It's empty, all the machinery was liquidated. It's owned by his old lady, but she's got no use for it."

Nic looked thoughtful at this news.

"Under the housing renewal act," Xeth continued, "all abandoned or unused buildings of that size will be seized when TerraTech starts work next month. They'll be able to claim it under eminent domain and use it for free. If I buy it from old lady Tivok and set up a workforce, I'll be in the prime location for providing warehousing and cheap labour to TerraTech and make a fortune."

"How much does she want for the building?" Nic asked.

"30 peggats," Xeth answered.

"If you two are finished doing your business in my house," snarked Jabari, "you can tell me what any of this has to do with my daughter."

"We're going to get married, Papa," Jazsu said. "I can help him with the accounting part of the business, he can handle the labour and equipment. We'll be together, and we'll be a family."

What followed could only be described as a shotgun wedding. At Toma's suggestion, Jabari was convinced to provide 40 peggats to Xeth as a bride price for Jazsu. Jabari also demanded a fifty per cent share of the warehousing business as the money would go towards the business startup costs. Harry and Xeth were able to talk him down to twenty per cent.

For his part, Nic insisted on paying an additional 40 peggats to the couple as a down payment on twenty per cent of the business for himself, as well. After Xeth paid the 30 peggats for the building, that left plenty for equipment, labour, and some hasty renovations on the facility.

What had started as the continuation of a blood feud had very nearly escalated to a massacre. That the Jedi, who had been threatened with death in an arena, were then able to negotiate the situation into a marriage and profitable joint business venture for all sides was nothing short of amazing to the family heads. The wedding took place that very afternoon on the floor of their new warehouse.

"You did well today, Harry," Toma said.

"Thank you, Master," Harry acknowledged. He was sitting at the mess hall table on the transport ship taking them back to Coruscant. The Jedi had not stayed after the wedding.

"I hope Xeth is able to keep that business on the legitimate side of the law," Harry said. "It'll be hard with both his father and his father-in-law being involved."

"Yes, it will," said Toma. He looked over his Padawan with a trained eye. "Harry, I know you are bothered by what you did in the arena. I'd like to talk to you about it."

"I keep seeing their faces every time I close my eyes," said Harry in a hoarse whisper. "I keep seeing that one with the net. I know I'm going to dream about them."

"It was not your fault, Harry," Toma said, comfortingly. "You did what you had to do to survive in a very dangerous place."

Harry looked down and closed his eyes. He had been involved in fights on missions in the past, of course, but save for hitting Yaxley with the reflected killing curse on Christmas, it had never escalated to deadly force before.

"Let us meditate on this," Toma said. "I want you to begin by clearing your mind."

The Jedi were not only diplomats and ambassadors, but they were also warriors. Taking life in the line of duty was, unfortunately, a requirement in the life of a Jedi. They were often assigned to the worst areas in the galaxy. They had, over the many years of their order, come up with strategies for helping those who had taken a life.

It was a well-honed system and employed a psychological understanding of the specific Jedi it was targeted to. Toma had Harry write a report detailing every aspect of his mission, and paying special attention to the combat he was involved in. This not only informed the Jedi Council of exactly what had happened, but it allowed Harry to get it all out of his consciousness. This was intended to help keep him from replaying the incidents in his head, over and over. With the help of the Jedi Medical Corps, he would soon be alright.

A/N - Thus begins Part 2 in my crossover take on Harry Potter and Star Wars. This will cover Harry's second year at Hogwarts.