Leia and the Force: “War is Coming”

“Strong the Force runs, in the Skywalker line. Only hope, we can. Until the time is right, disappear we will.” – Yoda ‘Revenge of the Sith’ novelization by Matthew Stover.

Once again I am consumed by the words of Matthew Stover’s literary adaptation of ‘Revenge of the Sith.’ Maybe I’m just biased or perhaps, it’s something much more than personal preferences.  Anyways, I think I’ll side with the latter. But enough idle chit-chat, let’s SkySpan the Skywalker Saga, and take a closer look at the “Chosen One’s” only daughter, Leia Organa.

As you know, there is so much ambiguity surrounding the Skywalker family legacy and their connection with the Force. And now, with the dawn of the sequel trilogy and all the new literary tie-ins the story group has given us, we have witnessed tremendous character growth in Leia Organa. Honestly, out of all the Skywalkers Leia is the one who is left to endure the pain of  her biological father’s past and eventually, she has to embrace what that knowledge brings to her entire family and the galaxy as a whole. In other words, one gigantic cyclical continuum of endless repercussions.

Leia, unlike any other Skywalker so far has upheld many roles. She’s been a prim princess, a member of the galactic senate, an active and vital leader in the Rebel Alliance, a daughter, a sister, a wife, and a mother that would later become a General in the Resistance against the evil First Order. Yet, underneath all of that, she has the Force. That’s some pretty big boots to fill, and she’s only 5 feet and 1 inches tall!

But, as a wise Jedi Master once said, “size matters not.” That being said, I’d say it has more to do with heart and it’s been said that “the strongest stars have hearts of Kyber.” If that’s true, then Leia has the purest of hearts and brightest light of all the stars in the galaxy far, far away. After all, she has the biggest cross to bear and she carries it with the utmost dignity – she never wavers. Yet, she doesn’t pursue the ways of the Force. Why?

As you may or may not know, there have been some great literary additions to the saga i.e. The Aftermath trilogy (Aftermath, Life Debt, and Empire’s End) by Chuck Wendig and Bloodline by Claudia Gray.  These books have given us an inner mindseye view of Leia’s character growth between the years of Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens. That view has shown us the changes, choices, and the costs Leia has had to face and she has had to face them, for the most part, alone.

The Rebellion may have won the battle on Endor, but for Leia, and the mysterious Force that runs rampant through her veins, the war is far from over.

The Force, yes, it’s strong in her family and yet, Leia chose a different path. The reasoning on this is unclear, murky even, but she can still feel it, growing inside her everyday.

War is coming (an excerpt from Empire’s End by Chuck Wendig)

    But her baby boy? Him she can effortlessly feel inside her. Not just the way that all mothers can feel the living creature within, but she can feel him with the invisible hands of the Force: With it she senses the margins of  his burgeoning mind, she knows his mood, she can tell that he’s healthy. He is a less human-shaped thing and more a pulsing, living band of light. Light that sometimes dims, that sometimes is thrust through with a vein of darkness. She tells herself that it’s normal – Luke said to her, Leia, we all have that. He explained the brighter the light, the darker the shadow.

My son is alive. The future is bright.

It’s an interesting moment to ponder and reflect upon. Especially when trying to rationalize why Leia would have opted out from learning the ways of the Force. From this passage alone, it’s possible that she feared its innate power and the responsibility that came along with it. After all, look what became of her father.

To be clear, I’m in no way insinuating that Leia feared her call to duty or the call to take up arms. Even if it led her to the frontlines of war. But I do believe she feared a war within herself, a war between the light and the dark side of the Force. So, her act of stepping aside and away from the Force was a noble one.

All in all, Leia was troubled by what she was feeling and felt. She could never understand the Force and so, she walked away from it. Putting an end to an era and starting a new one. Or so she hoped …