WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker -- Allegiance, from Ethan Sacks, Luke Ross, VC's Clayton Cowles and Lee Loughridge, on sale now.
Following the end of director Rian Johnson's Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Rey officially became the savior of the galaxy following the apparent death of Luke Skywalker. With the sacred Jedi texts in hand and the remaining Rebels in the Millennium Falcon sped off from Crait with Leia, Finn, Poe and their allies licking their wounds, Rey has to level up to succeed Luke's place as the galaxy's new hope.
Now, in Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker -- Allegiance #1, a prequel to December's Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, we know who Rey's been training with so she can stand up to Kylo Ren and the First Order when they come knocking. However, she hasn't been training with a a human. Instead, she's training a gigantic monster in the pits of Anoat that has a unique link to the Force.
Anoat is a garbage planet, a literal dump where the pollution fumes are so thick, the First Order's tracking signals won't be able to pick up Leia's Resistance camp there. They're trying to secure aid from other planets such as weapons, food and soldiers, but that's no easy task with limited help. Kylo Ren and his second-in-command, Hux, are eliminating anyone they think will help the Rebels, so Leia's short of potential allies.
As Leia formulates a plan to mitigate this trouble, she opts to head to Mon Cala, a longtime friend of the alliance, although, she knows she needs Rey to pilot the Falcon with Chewbacca. This also presents a chance to get the junker off Anoat, where she's been scouring and scavenging for generator parts for the Resistance since leaving Crait -- a respite Leia thinks she desperately needs. With her oxygen mask on due to the unhealthy atmosphere, we see Rey, wielding an upgraded staff, fighting off the pit beast, which comes across as a more bestial version of the Rancor from the original trilogy.
Rey's not using her lightsaber, however, since she's sparring with it, trying to use the Force to take the creature down. She tries to make a mental connection to control it, but Jedi mind tricks aren't working at the moment too. She also attempts to use Force telekinesis but that doesn't work either, which suggests that this monster is more than meets the eye. Apparently, Rey picked the beast, since it seemed Force-sensitive.
If it's not nullifying her abilities, Rey may not able to harness the Force as per The Force Awakens or The Last Jedi here since something inside her body or most likely, mind, is broken. After eventually realizing they're at a stalemate, Rey calls it a draw and the monster heads off to bask in its victory. And Rey, deep down, knows something's off with her tether to the Force.
Nonetheless, Leia makes it clear she needs her away from this routine and focused on the diplomatic mission at hand, hinting Rey's training with the beast is a regular part of what she needs to get back into the groove. Rey admits she had the creature right where she wanted but it's a lie, as Leia jokes about it eating her. This is another hint she knows Rey's connection to the Force isn't at full-strength. Luckily, Rey has the texts and Leia to confide in for assistance. As the pit beast runs off, it's obvious Rey isn't done sparring with it yet.