The duel between Master and Apprentice continued as the temple began to crumble around them. But to the two Force users, only the flashes of her white blades and his red saber mattered.
For so long Ahsoka had fought the knowledge that Darth Vader was her Master, Anakin Skywalker. In her mind she knew it was true, but her heart struggled to accept it. Anakin had been her annoying older brother, and in a few rare occasions a father figure. He had taught her to be strong, to believe in herself. Who she was, was partially because of his teachings.
Distantly Ahsoka felt Ezra and Kanan's Force signatures moving, flying away from the temple and a part of Ahsoka was relieved that they had escaped as she continued the duel. That is until the deteoration of the temple could no longer be ignored. The lightening from the key hole began to spread, forcing the two Force users to break apart, red and blue light flashed all around them. Ahsoka felt it in the Force, a warning of the inevitable. Everything went still for a moment before Ahsoka's vision was blinded. Light so intense poured from the key hole as it exploded, knocking Ahsoka to her feet.
The ceiling above her began to crack and crumble and pieces the size of gundarks began to fall around her. Looking up, Ahsoka could only register a large piece coming directly towards her. She couldn't react fast enough to stop it. A sense of acceptance filled her, ready to face death like the Jedi she once was, without any fear.
But to her shock, the stone was stopped from crushing her by bare millimeters. Sitting up slightly she was shocked to find Anakin standing over top of her, with his hands over top of his head. He was using the Force to protect both him and her from the falling debris. Ahsoka immediately copied his example, helping to share the burden like so many times in her past.
Walking away from the Order, walking away from her Master was the hardest thing she had done in her entire life. Before the fall of the Republic, there wasn't a day that went by that she did regret doing it. But after Order 66 was carried out, Ahsoka was thankful that had left. Or she would have been one of thousands of Jedi that were slaughtered.
You may never see your future if you remain his student! The words of her vision echoing in her mind as she battled Vader. It was a statement that had haunted her since it had occurred. Sweat began to fall down her face as she held up the stone, as the temple continued to crumble around them.
After what seemed like an eternity the rumbling finally stopped, and the only sound that could be heard was stones settling. Above her Vader began to rise from his knees, the stone following his movements. When he was fully standing, he casted his hand away from him, and the stones followed his movements.
Ahsoka was shocked at the power Vader possessed, he had not even this powerful when he was her Master. But she did not allow this observation to distraction.
The crisis adverted for the moment, Ahsoka knew that Vader would soon turn to finish what he had started. She reached for her lightsabers that had fallen to the still intact stone floor. But as her fingers touched the hilts, they were forced ripped from her hands and a black booted foot slammed into her abdomen. Ahsoka immediately curled inwards protecting her vital organs. Turning her head to look up she met the gaze of Vader. It was harder to ignore the fact there was an actual human in the suit as his yellow eye glared at her as he struggled to take in enough air.
In his hands, he held not only her lightsabers, but his as well. As she watched he once again activated it and she knew at that moment that this was the end. She struggled to her knees, she would not take death lying down.
Ahsoka did not plead for Vader to spare her, did not flinch when he pressed his lightsaber close enough that she could feel her skin burning. All she focused on was the yellow eye that studied her. As she watched, he began to raise his saber.
"You promised you would never hurt me" she whispered breaking eye contact and bending her head in defeat.
She did not see Vader hesitant, for the briefest of moments his sickly yellow eyes change to a cerulean blue. She didn't know the memories of that fateful day when Anakin promised Ahsoka that, broke through the cloud of anger and for a moment the man who used to be her Master surfaced. That man drunk in the sight of his fully grown Padawan, how beautiful she had grown.
While the Emperor had nursed his hatred for his old Master and the rest of the Jedi who had betrayed him. Ahsoka was not included in that group, and she had understood when others did not.
The Emperor had ordered him to kill the remaining Jedi, but the Troguta before him was not a Jedi as she had reminded him. Just this once he would show her leniency, in memory of the man he used to be. A man who she once called Skyguy. Slowly he lowered his lightsaber and deactivated it. He did not look back to her as he turned and began to slowly limping out of the rubble. The coward Maul had stolen his ship but activating his emergency beacon he only had to wait.
Ahsoka opened her eyes at the tell-tale sound of Vader's light saber being deactivated. Raising her head Ahsoka was sure she would see a pair of binders in his hands. That he had changed his mind, instead of killing her he would take her back to the Emperor. But she was shocked to see the retreating back of Vader limping away through the smoke and the rubble.
Ahsoka slowly stood up with an arm wrapped around her bruised mid-section and began to walk wanting to put distance between her and Vader if he changed his mind. She didn't understand why he had just left her, why he had showed her mercy?
But the ruins of Sith temple did not answer her as she stepped through the doorway and into the darkness that lay beyond that