There were three more (large!) piles of droid parts waiting in her work room when she rose at dawn. She hadn’t yet made it through all six of the piles that had appeared yesterday. And the day before that. Kel'ani Sol sighed dramatically and nudged a dented power converter with her foot.

“Those Padawans really need to stop kicking the crap out of my droids,” she muttered.

Really. Disarming a droid that was programed to admit defeat at the appropriate time was one thing. Kel'ani could forgive the practice blade scorch marks. But was it necessary to hack an arm off? Or hew a leg away just because? Mostly it was the advanced Padawans learning the Marks of Contact like Cho sun or Cho mok that sent her droids back to her in pieces. But still. Master Liam Dentiri encouraged all Padawans to abuse the droids. Kel'ani would just rebuild them anyway.

She had been like them once. She had been told she’d been born on a poor planet torn by civil war. A visiting Jedi Master had come across her just days old and taken her from her birth parents because she had been Force sensitive. She was raised in the Temple on Corusant, studied and trained with the younglings. She had worked hard during her years as an Initiate. Harder than most because her link to the Force was tenuous and weak. She had held on to wild hopes that she would make Padawan one day, but logic convinced her that she should probably pick up another hobby to feed herself.

When she wasn’t training, she was in the Temple’s massive library. She eventually settled on slicing and technology, finding those topics raptly held her interest. She taught herself from the Temple’s archives, even going so far as taking apart Master Syo’s lightsaber once when his head was turned. She’d put it back together, mostly, and after that day, Master Syo looked at her differently.

She had been nine when the Sith attacked Coruscant and annihilated the Temple. Even on that day she hadn’t really relied on her Force affinity to locate and escape with 18 younglings and an injured teacher. She had sliced protocol droids and serving units, overriding their core programing and turning them into protectors and distractions. Malfunctioning doors opened for her, then closed and locked again to keep tormentors off their tails. They escaped mostly unscathed and she had been praised for her ingenuity.

But that didn’t mean she had been able to pass her Initiate trials. Master Syo had placed a comforting hand on her shoulder after her failure and told her warmly that the Force had other plans for her. So now, she still lived within the Temple, now on the ancient Jedi homeworld of Tython, but her contributions ranged mostly to fixing Master Liam’s droids and maintaining what library had been salvaged from Coruscant.

This couldn’t be all the Force had planned for her, could it?