Fandom: Star Wars
Pairing: Rey/Kylo Ren
Timeframe: Immediately after TLJ
Disclaimer: Broke as fuck. Characters you recognize do not belong to me. Characters you don’t recognize are mine.
Summary: An exploration of the bond between Kylo Ren and Rey.
A/N: So I was not impressed with either TFA or TLJ. I was all “meh” after both. But after re-watching certain scenes in TFA and TLJ, my beloved Muse decided that she was quite impressed with the good ‘ship Reylo, enough that I’m about to spit out a fic I don’t have time to write. I suppose I should not be surprised.
A/A/N: I don’t know where this is going to lead, so…
1. “Come Back to Me” -Janet Jackson
“We have everything we need.”
Rey looked the general in the eye. It was less than 25 people on board the Falcon. All that was left of the Resistance. So much loss of life…and they lost anyway. Rey didn’t know where they were headed, but it became clear to her two minutes after the Falcon took off from Crait that she knew where she was going. The ship hadn’t even cleared the lower levels of the atmosphere when she felt it—him—deep in her soul.
She couldn’t hide it from Leia. She tried.
“Where are we going, General?”
“Sajava IV,” she said. “A small planet in the Outer Rim. We’ll be safe there. Don’t worry.”
“I’m not worried,” Rey said. “It’s just that…that…”
Leia stared at the girl, closing her eyes. A moment later, she reached out and put her hand on Rey’s shoulder.
“You need to leave.”
Rey looked at the woman. “But we—the Resistance—I can’t just—”
Leia squeezed Rey’s shoulder. “You’re connected to him. I can feel it. Somehow, you and Ben have developed a bond. A powerful one.”
“Snoke did it. He opened us up to one another. We have no control over it.”
“Leave it to Snoke to take credit for something as rare as that. I assure you, Rey, that you and my son had a connection before Snoke exploited it. He couldn’t have used it if it wasn’t already there to begin with. He just magnified it.”
Rey thought back to when Kylo interrogated her on his ship. He tried to extract information from her and she fought him to keep her secrets hid. It felt like he was trying to pull her brain out through her eye sockets. Some of her secrets went willingly. Others, not so much.
She remembered. He had said, “Don’t be afraid. I feel it, too.” And there it was.
Rey trembled at the memory. “Snoke is dead,” she said. “He killed him to save me.”
Leia gasped softly, pulling back to look Rey in the eye. “Ben killed Supreme Leader Snoke?”
“Yes. Snoke was torturing me and next thing I know, he was cut in half with my lightsaber. Ben did that. Then, together, we fought Snoke’s guards. We made it out in one piece…at least I did. There was an explosion and we got separated…”
Rey steeled herself because she did not want Leia to know how much she liked fighting and killing Snoke’s Praetorian Guard. She and Kylo decimated the squad in a matter of minutes. The Force was flowing freely and it felt good. She also didn’t want Leia privy to her and Ben’s last conversation.
Leia squeezed Rey’s hands. “You can’t stay with us, Rey. Not now, maybe not for a long time. You need him. He needs you. You have to go to him.”
Let the past die. Kill it if you have to.
You need a teacher.
You’re not alone.
“I know. I need him,” Rey said. “I need to finish my training.”
She didn’t know how to break it to Finn. Rey didn’t believe she could find the words to convey to her friend that she had to leave. That she wasn’t the Jedi she could be; that she needed more training and there was no one else in the galaxy that could give her the education she wanted. So she got BB-8 to record a message with the instructions to play it for him after she left. Hopefully, Leia could make him understand.
Rey went into the cargo bay. She closed her eyes and tried to focus. She pictured Kylo in her mind. Could she reach him like this? Was it possible that she could train herself to use their Force bond? She had no idea, but she kept concentrating nonetheless. Maybe it would work. She had never tried to reach out to him before.
After what felt like hours and the beginnings of a nasty headache, she saw him. He was on board his command shuttle.
“Are you still on Crait?” she asked.
“We’re leaving,” he said, his voice terse. He really didn’t feel like talking.
“Don’t leave yet,” she said, her voice just above a whisper.
That got his attention. “What did you say?”
Rey rubbed her eyes with her fingers. She was exhausted and her head hurt. “Don’t leave. I’m coming back. Don’t leave without me.”
Kylo stared at her as if she were out of her mind. After that chat on board Snoke’s ship…?
“It took me less than five minutes to figure out that I may have been a bit…hasty… in denying your request.
“You want to come back? To me?” He wasn’t sure he heard her correctly.
“I need you,” she said. “You were right. I need your guidance, your expertise. I am not the Jedi I should be. Sometimes it’s hard to find the light when all I want to do is go towards the dark. I don’t have the control that I want, and in spite of being on board a ship full of people, I’m still…alone.” She knew he would understand.
“How far away are you?”
“Not far. We cleared Crait’s atmosphere not long ago.”
“I will wait for you in the remains of the rebel base. I will not wait forever.”
Rey nodded, closing her eyes. She shook her head, wondering if and when the connection would break. She didn’t have much time. She already had her belongings stashed in an escape pod.
Leia entered the cargo bay to see her off. She helped Rey into the pod and sealed the door before putting in the coordinates Rey gave her. She put her hand against the glass and Rey followed suit.
“Good-bye,” Rey mouthed.
Leia nodded. “May the force be with you.”
He was sitting behind one of the consoles when she arrived. Rey yawned, fatigue beginning to overcome her. She hadn’t had a good night’s sleep in a long time. The stone beds on Ahch-To did a number on her back and hips. Moving all of those rocks on Crait sapped her of most of her strength. She was exhausted and her head hurt. Rey walked right up to Kylo and extended her hand.
Kylo knew better than to ask if she had decided to join him in the Dark. That conversation would come later. He also knew he had no interest in joining her in the Light. Whatever this was, he was down for it. He took her hand and pulled her close. Rey looked up at him, into his dark, tortured eyes and without thought, used her free hand to caress the left side of his face. Where she cut him with her lightsaber.
A random thought came from out of nowhere. I did that.
“Let’s go,” she said.
When she boarded Kylo’s ship, she was surprised to see General Hux at the command. He stared at her and sneered at Kylo.
“What in the hell is that scavenger scum doing here? She killed the Supreme Leader!! Is that why you had us wait here all this time???” Hux’s face was nearly the color of his hair.
Rey was too tired to give the general anything more than a side-eye. Kylo glared at Hux and raised his fingers in a pincer grip. Hux knew exactly what that meant and turned away. “Can we leave now, Supreme Leader?”
“Yes. I do not wish to be disturbed under any circumstances. The resistance is dead and we have our own casualties to take care of. I leave that to you, but if you cross me or go against my wishes, I will stop your breath permanently.”
Kylo didn’t wait for Hux to answer. He took Rey’s arm and guided her to his private chamber. Rey entered the room and saw a cot off to one side. She headed towards it without a word. Kylo let her go; he could sense her fatigue. Rey sat down after putting her things to the side. Kylo sat in his chair, about ten feet from her.
“Why did you change your mind?”
“I told you. I need you. I’m not the Jedi I should be. I realized I was wrong shortly after I left.”
“I don’t train Jedis,” he said. “I told you that you need to let all that go. Let it die. We have the potential to be so much more beyond those limitations. We can rule the galaxy, you and I.” It was all very simple to him.
“You’re serious about this?”
“I wouldn’t say so otherwise.”
“Did you tell Hux that I killed Snoke?”
“It seemed like a good idea at the time. All that matters now is that I’m the Supreme Leader. He’s going to try something mutinous, I’m sure, but I can handle Hux now that I don’t have Snoke hovering over me.” Kylo had no problems wiping the general off the face of the universe.
Rey rubbed her face with her hands. “I’m so tired.”
“When did you last sleep?”
“Then I’ll leave you to rest.”
“Where are we going, Ben?”
“After we transfer to the Finalizer, we will go to Nubia. It’s in the Corellian system. The First Order, like the Resistance, has lost a lot of lives. There were over 225 million people employed on Snoke’s ship. The First Order was based out of the Supremacy and when the ship exploded, most of those lives and our home base were lost. Factory workers, engineers, communications staff, human resources and technical specialists were slaughtered within minutes. Plus their families. Not to mention the other ships we lost, including the dreadnought. We have wounds too.”
Rey tried to not be moved by his words. It seemed so odd to hear it put that way. The Resistance lost just as much as the First Order had, but truly, the two could not be compared. The Resistance was down to a handful of people, but not the First Order. But loss of life was loss of life. Never mind Kylo’s personal participation in the loss of many innocent and Resistance lives.
“So yes, we need to rebuild. Our headquarters will be based out of Nubia for now.”
“How far are we from Nubia?”
“Around six or seven parsecs. We will be jumping to light speed soon enough.”
“Does the First Order have anything in the Corellian system? If Snoke’s ship was the headquarters, then how can there be anything there for you to use?”
“I made arrangements just before we connected.”
“Arrangements for what?”
“Are you deliberately being obtuse?”
Rey snorted. “No! I’m just trying to understand where we are going and why.”
“Oh, do you plan to spy on us?” She would find it difficult if that were the case.
“Ben, I am not a spy and don’t plan to be anything more than your student and confidant. I meant what I said.”
He stared at her. “That’s all?”
“What else do you want me to be? I’m not a spy. As you said, the Resistance is dead.” Best to think of it that way. If Leia was able to rebuild, Rey didn’t want Kylo to know about it.
Kylo looked at her. His eyes were onyx marbles. “My partner. I told you. We could rule the galaxy. You’re more powerful than you realize, but at least you appreciate that you need a teacher.”
Rey bent to untie her shoes.
“What did Skywalker teach you?”
“Not much,” she said as she took her shoes off. “I need more practice.” In the lonely days when she wasn’t chasing Luke around the Temple remains, she read the ancient texts. The information might actually become useful once she got her fighting skills up.
Kylo smirked, unsurprised. “Your fighting skills are good,” he said, watching her as she rubbed her feet. “Your abilities complement mine. Did you notice that when we were fighting the Praetorian Guard?”
Rey wiggled her toes and closed her eyes. “Not really. I was trying not to die.”
“Well, let that be lesson one. You have to be able to read the entire room and anticipate any number of events and possible outcomes. You have to stay ready when you are in the company of the enemy.”
It wasn’t bad advice. Rey yawned again.
“Sorry,” she said. “I’m really struggling now.”
“No worries,” he replied. “Get some rest. I’ll wake you when we come out of light speed.”
She leaned back. The cot was a standard model, but was loads more comfortable than the rocks she slept on back on Ahch-To. She was asleep within minutes.