In a world filled with desolate workhouses and vast farms, a young girl named Daal yearns for an escape from her mundane existence. Brimming with determination, Daal confides in her closest companions, Baython, Quinn, and Keena, about her bold plan to explore the mystical Screecher’s Reach, a cavern shrouded in rumors of ghostly apparitions. The group embarks on an adventure, traversing the barren landscapes aboard stolen land speeders before eventually setting up camp.
While Quinn and Keena revel in the joyous freedom of their journey, Baython imparts a nugget of wisdom upon Daal: the importance of seizing opportunities whenever they arise. Encouraged by her friend’s words, Daal and her companions make the collective decision to continue their expedition on foot, forging ahead towards the mysterious Screecher’s Reach.
A Haunting Encounter
Upon their arrival at the fabled cave, Daal, clutching a treasured necklace, exhibits an air of detachment, as though a hidden force pulls her away from her companions. As they venture deeper into the cave, the group stumbles upon a chamber where an ominous presence lurks—a ghost that emits spine-chilling screeches, triggering an unexpected cave-in. Despite Keena’s valiant attempts to convince Daal to leave, Daal commands her friends to escape, determined to confront the menacing ghost.
To Daal’s astonishment, the ghost is unmasked as a Sith, brandishing a crimson lightsaber. Desperately seeking an escape route, Daal channels an unexpected surge of power from within, utilizing the Force to bring a massive boulder crashing down upon the seemingly untouchable Sith. Trembling with fear yet emboldened by her newfound strength, Daal seizes the fallen lightsaber and defeats her adversary.
A Life-Altering Revelation
Emerging from the treacherous depths of the cave, we learn Daal’s necklace is a communication device that summons a colossal starship to their location. As the immense vessel descends, a formidable Sith Mother materializes before Daal, unveiling the truth behind the harrowing ordeal: it was a test, specifically designed to assess Daal’s mettle and conviction. Proving herself worthy, Daal is rewarded with the coveted lightsaber, a symbol of her liberation from the shackles of her former life. However, the Sith Mother forbids Daal’s friends from accompanying her on this transformative journey.
Daal’s friends are left wounded by her choice to leave, unable to fathom the depths of her conversion. In response, she reminds Baython of his advice, “Never look back, right?” And yet, as Daal steps aboard the Sith Mother’s imposing ship, bidding her companions a bittersweet farewell, she casts one final wistful gaze back at the friends she leaves behind.
Assessing the Journey
Daal’s mission, bestowed upon her by the Sith Mother, demands her to venture into Screecher’s Reach and eliminate the Sith lurking within a treacherous cave. Although the full extent of the test may have eluded Daal initially, the weight of her responsibility becomes evident as the story progresses. The Sith Mother, shrouded in an aura of light that blurs the line between good and evil, dismisses Daal’s request to include her friends. It becomes clear that Daal’s selection stems from her unique affinity for the Force, while her friends lack such abilities. The Sith Mother harbors intentions of grooming Daal as her apprentice, presenting her with a crucial decision that will shape her destiny.
As Daal bids her friends farewell, one cannot help but wonder if this moment signifies the birth of a young Sith coming into her own. The words she utters to the Sith Mother—“You said the test was in my mind”—linger in the air, making it clear Daal discussed this with the Sith Mother earlier. Likewise, her parting words to her friends—“She promised me another life”—carry a sense of determination and anticipation. Curiously, Daal did not to disclose the true nature of her encounter with the Sith Mother or her subsequent plans to her friends. This omission raises questions about her intentions as she departs. When she announced she was going to Screecher’s Reach, she did not invite her friends; they invited themselves. Did she intend to bid them farewell or simply vanish from their lives?
While some may question the soundness of Daal’s decision, it is crucial to consider her longing for a fresh start, as promised to her. The absence of inquiries about her future or the expectations placed upon her may hint at her unwavering resolve to embrace a new life. Symbolic foreshadowing occurs as Daal first enters the cave, leaving her friends behind. It becomes evident that her focus lies solely on her own needs, without much empathy for her friends’ well-being. Did she intend to safeguard her friends by urging them to leave the cave, or did she seek to sever their ties altogether? What will happen to her friends when they get back to workhouse, missing for days, with stolen land speeders?
In contemplating Daal’s choices, one cannot dismiss the possibility that she possesses the inherent qualities befitting a Sith. Her resolute abandonment of her previous life suggests a strength of character that aligns with the Sith path. Moreover, her singular focus on personal fulfillment at the expense of her friendships points to an individual driven by self-interest. These traits, while seemingly callous, may be the foundation upon which her transformation unfolds.
The mysterious nature of Daal’s choices leaves me yearning for updates on her saga, eager to witness the extent of her evolution and the trials that lie ahead.