Chapter VI- Battle of the Mind

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The three Jedi sprinted on for what felt like hours, making sure to get as far away from the base and their captures as possible. The blood-red sun beat down on them relentlessly, making the equally red sand boil like hot coals. The desert was a harsh desert, and Anakin would much rather spend a week out on the wastelands of the Dune Sea on Tatooine, than survive through Moraband.

However, the planets heat and terrain were not the only problems. With each step Anakin took, the Dark Side clawed at him deeper and deeper. Moraband was most definitely giving off an intense evil energy, slowly luring a certain Chosen One towards the Dark Side and away from the Light.

Since neither Obi-Wan nor Ahsoka could feel the Force, they couldn't feel the darkness. They both knew, once Anakin said the word, that the planet was in fact Moraband, yet the Dark Side didn't seem present to them. It was almost like a burden had been lifted off of their shoulders. They didn't have to fight to resist it. They didn't have to stay focussed towards the Light. They were in complete spiritual harmony.

Anakin however, was not...

He felt the powerful lure towards the Dark Side, and the struggle to stay on the Light. It was like a war raging on inside his head. It was almost like a game. One side repelled the evilness that was Moraband's presence, yet the other pulled him closer and closer towards it. All his life as a Jedi he had fought the resistance of the Dark Side, but never before had the temptation of it been this strong. The Dark Side was a voice inside his head calling to him. It would taunt him, and press further into his being, until he could no longer fight it.

The internal battle within his mind, made his head throb. All of his power and concentration was on staying loyal towards the Light, because there was a tiny voice from the Dark Side whispering: 'If you surrender yourself to the Dark, all of the struggles will end. The fighting, the pain, the conflict. If you join the Dark Side, you will gain unlimited power, strength and abilities. The Jedi are weak. The Sith are strong... The Sith are dominant... The Sith are mighty... The Sith are where you belong.'

He didn't even realize that he was on his knees in the burning sand and his hands were grasping his aching head, until Obi-Wan caught his attention. "Anakin, are you alright?" The question seemed rhetorical, for the answer was obvious, yet Anakin gathered the strength to shake his head. He focussed on Obi-Wan's voice, to drain away the demonic speaking one that was imbedded into his own thoughts.

"The Dark Side, it's so..." —Anakin looked for the right word— "intense, here..." He said softly and through raggedy  breaths. He looked up, only to see the other two Jedi looking over him in concern. Their faces had worry written all over, but something about them made Anakin notice instantly. The evil energy wasn't attacking them, like it was attacking him. "You don't feel it, do you?" He asked quietly.

Obi-Wan gave a grim look, then shook his head slightly. That meant he was alone in this battle. Anakin looked over to Ahsoka and she stood with the same sad look. "The drug that they injected us with---it's purpose is to stop Force-sensitive beings from using and manipulating the Force, for a while."

Anakin's face furrowed with confusion. He knew he was injected with it, yet he could still feel the Force. Even stronger than before. What was weirder was that Anakin could feel the Force through them, not only himself.

"But I can still feel it." He looked up and met Obi-Wan's gaze. "I don't understand how you can't. I've never felt the Force so strongly in my life, same with the darkness."

"It seems as if your reaction towards the drug, was significantly different to that of Ahsoka's and mine." Obi-Wan stated.

Anakin looked back at the ground, pondering. He always liked being different, yet this was almost frightening. He didn't know why though. Maybe it was because no Jedi had experienced it. Maybe because of the pull towards the Dark. Maybe it was because he was even afraid of his own power.

A small approaching sandstorm was starting to brew. The red sand whipped around the three Jedi, and stung when it collided with their skin. "Storms coming." Said Ahsoka, changing the subject.

Ahsoka didn't mind the heat —being a togruta and all— yet flying sand was definitely something she did not enjoy. She made a 'ugh' sound when the sand storm intensified, and picked up wind. "Well SkyGuy, you grew up on a desert. What do we do?" She tried to lighten mood with dry humour.

"Well, Snips," He retaliated. "Seeking shelter would be a good start." Anakin pointed out the obvious.

Ahsoka tried to open her eyes, but the sand just got in the way of her vision. "I can't see anything!" She had to yell, because the rapid wind was making it hard to hear.

The Light Side of the Force called to Anakin once again, telling him to close it eyes. He obeyed, since he didn't have any other options in this storm.

He concentrated deeply. From his closed eyelids, he could almost see everything off into the distance. The desert stretched on for miles. He could also see the base that they had fled from. However, something peculiar was in his line of vision. A abandoned temple-like structure, stood among the sand, far off from where they were standing. He doubted it was possible to see it with his regular eyes, but with his Force-guided vision, he could see a very clear building.

•••

A/N

Will the Dark Side lure Anakin? Or will he remain on the Light? Can they get out of the sand storm? And what is this 'temple-like' structure? (Bonus rhetorical question: Will Anakin complain about the sand?)

Vote and Comment if you like this chapter :) Feedback is most appropriated. Comments and Votes make my day. If you have any suggestions as to where this story will go in the next few chapters, feel free to message me. :)

I also have a new one-shot out for the 'Big Change' WattPad FanFic competition. It's called 'The Clone Wars: Just Like That'. Description- One mistake in battle, an incidental stray blaster bolt, a miscalculated Force jump, a single lightsaber swing or a miscommunication through comm-links could change the outcome of everything, and also mean the difference between life and death.

Things can change throughout the long raging battle, or as quickly as a heartbeat... Just Like That

QOUT: 'I find your lack of faith disturbing' - Darth Vader | Star Wars: Episode IV- A New Hope

May the Force be with you

-CyanGalaxy

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