This first chapter is short but more is to come! Working on several AUs but this one was voted for most on my Tumblr.
The driver swerves as Mace's body clashes with the front of their speeder. It dips, before finding a way to counterbalance the new weight. The vehicle did most of the work. Its driver spoke with a heavy rodian accent. That along with their panicky, rushed words, it was difficult to understand them. To be fair, he knows few would remain so composed in this given situation. Not all have been trained like Jedi. That knowledge did little to ease his headache, or soothe the throbbing, constantly vibrating electricity numbing his senses. It was a struggle just to close his remaining hand around the front pipes he had landed on. The panicked screaming of the rodian driving was like a metal spike being driven straight through his brain.
"Calm down," his demand came out as a weak plea. With a sore throat the words were hoarse, and probably fell flat long before they could've reached the rodian. His 74-Z speeder bike was losing height. Even if the man himself would not calm down at least he was landing his vehicle. He had lost so much hope in the people of Coruscant that it was actually a surprised to see one pullover instead of flipping his bike to throw the Jedi off. He would have grabbed for his lightsaber if he still had it. The sudden reminder of his lost weapon hits him profoundly. Shoulders sagging, his body finally loses some of its tension.
The Jedi falls off as soon as they land. Hissing in pain, Mace forces his eyes to open. As soon as he catches a glimpse of the lights above his head the screams begin. Thousands of living being crying out in pain, and fear. Hundreds dying in the moments after. The bright red, yellow, and white lights of racers speed up. They run together in a blur. A neon haze fills his head. It blocks out some of the messages, but one voice breaks through. Louder than his strongest vision Depa's voice shakes him. In a different way then the lightning from Darth Sidious, Mace was struck to his core.
"...you must run!"
"Are you alright?"
"The Jedi," The tingly starts to calm. If it was from him finally laying still, or simply due to time Mace wasn't sure. "the Jedi are gone." As if to mourn alongside him, the rain starts. Slow and steady as his former's padawan's nerves had been. She had accepted death, and in return it took her.
"The Jedi?" The calm that had settled over his heart is crushed. This rodian probably new little facts about the order. The public held many misconceptions about the order. Was this man friend or foe? What lies had he heard? Which did he believe? The 'truth' they had thought they were putting out into the world? Or those that the Sith hidden in their midst had planted? "Are you a Jedi?"
"Not anymore." Mace could feel it now. Every second another one of his comrades were slain. Cut down by the ones they had all trusted. Between the lights he could see brief images. Commander Grey raising his blaster, Plo Koon as flames engulf his face, Commander Cody signaling to fire, Commander Wolffe falling out of his ship, struggling to remove his helmet as the lights throw Obi-wan's face at him next. That last one lingers. It lingers like the obvious pain on his face, and longer then the tears he quickly blinks away.
"My arm." Mace shows his missing appendage. There was a yelp. "I need a place to stay. Just,"
"No worries Master Jedi. I know just the place." He takes note of the suspicious change in tone. The rodian may have been trying to comfort him, and he was offering his help. With his wounds, he didn't have any other choices. For now, Mace would have to trust. Trust. It was a hard concept to rely on now. With the visions he had just seen it would seem trust is what caused the Jedi's downfall. Hopefully Depa's last words were not a warning for him.
I'm almost entirely on Ao3 nowadays but will try to crosspost on here more often. I'm tigereyes45 on Tumblr and Ao3.