18th Nov: We've switched servers and will be updating the old code over the next couple months, meaning that several things might break. Please report issues here.
Luke Skywalker had told us that at the moment of Alderaan's destruction, his master, Obi-Wan Kenobi, had said he felt "a disturbance in the Force." Anyone who could label what I felt a "disturbance" could think of Hutts as cuddly. The hollow shock one feels when told of a close friend's sudden death slammed into me at lightspeed. My conscious mind searched in vain for an identity to attach to that feeling, finding a way to contain it, but the hollowness opened into a bottomless void. Not only did I not know who had died, but I would never have a chance to know them, and that seemed the greatest tragedy possible.
Flashes of faces, snippets of dreams, laughter aborted and the sweet scent of a newborn's flesh undergoing a greasy transformation into roast meat all roared through me. Thousands upon thousands, millions upon millions, these images and impressions came in a whirlwind that screwed itself down into my belly. Hope melted into fear, wonder into terror, innocence into nothingness. Bright futures, all planned, proved the ultimate in morphability when a fundamental truth in these lives proved wrong. For these people there had never been a question of whether or not the sun would rise tomorrow, and yet in an instant they were proved wrong, as the sun reached out and devoured their world.
I heard Streen screaming that there were too many voices to handle before he slumped to the floor. I envied him in that moment. The same clarity of recall I cherished seconds before meant I watched a vast parade of dead flicker through my consciousness. A mother, acting on instinct, shielded her child in the nanosecond before both of them were vaporized. Young lovers, lying together in the the afterglow of the moment, hoping what they felt would never end, got their wish as they were torn into their constituent atoms. Criminals, triumphant in some small success, were reduced to fearful puling animals as their world evaporated.
You always sense a disturbance in the force. But yeah, I sense it too.