He had wanted to die on Starkiller, wanted to be absorbed into the scarlet infinite of the universe, to be consumed by the astral expulsion of matter, the ultimate ascension into perpetuity, to be forever sublimated as energy from the galaxy’s greatest weapon, the fearsome child of his own making swallowing him back up into the great, gaping, maw of its event horizon.
He had tasted the metal of the blaster against the flat of his tongue: sour and bright. He had closed his eyes and tried to think of a crimson wave of light. Instead, he had seen a field of snow.
His wet-eyed, shaking, paralytic silence is his refusal. Ren is correct: he is a disgrace. He blinks, drops his gaze.
“Coward,” says Ren.
“Get fucked,” he says. (His voice breaks. It sounds so weak.)