Compassion is a trait in many that has become seemingly rare. I have written an in-depth history of the struggles your father and I have faced in the past weeks. Today, I can only seem to say that those struggles are behind us. The war is not over but the battle has been won. By the grace and power of a man named Anetho Dawnpride, I have been pardoned of my supposed crimes against the State.
The Inquisitor does not have the power to put me on trial again for some time.
OOC Note: This story was written with the incredible Stephen Renn.
The Lantern crackled with the lightning that overloaded it. It wasn’t the shock of the elemental power that lead her to drop the lantern, it was the state of the room. Even with her damaged eyes, it was clear that something catastrophic had occured. Zulfi’Marou Adjassou had never been inside of the Ravalta estate. There had never been a reason and the Troll was loathe to travel into the spiritually empty lands of Quel’thalas. The Ravalta’s as she had come to know them did not strike her as people who would live in such destruction. And the evidence pointed to destruction akin to a small seaforium charge going off. Books, papers, scrolls, jewelery, clothing, bedding, and all manners of things were torn asunder and thrown in all directions. Everything save the heavy bed against the back wall of the room had been blown outside a six foot radius. This puzzled Adjassou greatly. In the center of this destruction was the family Ravalta.
There are too many goodbyes. Too little time. For a Troll who has lost time, irony fails to be lost. This life, my life, has been odd. Quite so. Little remains of my mind, it atrophies inside my head. No, not atrophy. Something else. The Ebon Ravalta called it a Temporal Distortion Syndrome. What I did, what I do and what I will do it leads to that. How can it not? I am Darkspear. As Darkspear, I did the impossible.
It wasn’t so long ago that your father and I were only friends with a set time and place in which we met daily to discuss whatever thoughts were in our minds. There were days when those conversations would begin with the sun high in the sky and end with the moon hanging over our heads. Both of us were grizzled veterans, carrying the weight of our pasts and mourning those we had lost. Neither of us sought to move past this, let alone did we seek romantic companionship.
I remember a song my father once sang to my sister and I, out of all my memories of him, it is the one that shines brighter than the rest. The song was about a woman, battered and beaten by life who found solace with a simple man. When she healed, she departed not knowing yet what she had left behind. In time, the woman would return to the simple man and together they would die having known true happiness.
Armide was returning to Mandalore. The thought of venturing to see her had passed through her mind, when Zeke looked up at her from the repairs they were performing on Eltich’s Vigo, she knew the same thought had gone through his. They both shrugged, whether they would do it or not remained to be seen. The Twi’lek climbed down from the wing and slipped out of the hanger, there was too much work to get done for her to take too long of a break, but something was changing. People were returning to their roots and life was going on. The war was over. Through the datafeed of her cybernetic lekku, Aay’han could hear the muffled snores of her son and the breathing of her husband. She didn’t know how to look back over the time that had passed, what lead from the small laboratory she ran in the pits of Lok to Mandalore. None of it made sense. Chaos rarely did. It was one of the failsafe lessons, there was a beauty to chaos once you recognized that while it could be understood, it would never make sense. Her lekku slinked over her shoulders to curl and twist around each other as she looked up to the stars.
Part 1: Writs of Passage
She was going home. No, not home, it hadn’t been home since she and her husband stood before the Sunwell to exchange vows of devotion. The Ravalta Estate in Quel’thalas had become her home or so she continued to expect it to. Padija Ravalta had never been able to settle into the sprawling manse, she had never nested to make it her own. Her home was destroyed, now infested with the very abominations that sought to its demise. In the time since she had fought to make her home among the men and women of the Argent Crusade and it was to them that she was returning.
I got pinched. This mynock got me by my lekku and hauled me to this shady little Hutt run cantina on Hutta. (Aren’t they all shady and Hutt run there?) Now, mind you, I was passing off this load of glitterstim as ryll. I knew it wouldn’t hold up with any knowledgeable buyer, but that’s part of the grift. The con. You find the peedunkys and move the frotzin’ bolshit. Anyways, the entire situation had gone bad and wasn’t what I’d call one of my best moments but everyone screws up sometimes. By getting caught, I lost it all. My ship was sold out from under me (it was a piece of shit anyways), my freedom was offered up to the highes— why lie? The lowest bidder. This is how I got introduced to the life of slavery in a gilded cage. I say gilded because in all honesty, it wasn’t too bad. Shake my ass, gasbag with the customers. The servicing spacers and mynocks wasn’t that grand, but everything has a trade off. All I had to do was keep my lekku straight, I couldn’t even do that. Not when I met him at least. He’s how I got into trouble. Again.
He had come into the cantina, not to watch the dancers – I’m sure that was a perk – he was running a con. I know a fellow grifter when I see one. His game was simple and frotzin’ brill. Huttball, the game was taking place but he wasn’t registering the bets he was taking. He took thirty bets and paid out for five. The folks in the cantina caught on pretty quick, sure. By the time they did, however, he was out the door and he had me with him.
Shancolo Marsol. That’s his name and it was the name tossed into the pool of mynocks right alongside mine. After a few years together, and a few marital vows, I’ve learned a thing or two about Shan. He can’t run a con for shit. He can find the best cheap cargo loads for us to make into something worth turning around, however. And he might just make the best plant in a crowd. Or pimp… or announcer, sometimes he even plays the victim.
That’s the trick with us grifters. We have roles to play, it ain’t like everyone else in the Galaxy. No one likes a con artist, not unless they’re turning profit for them. We’re usually on our own and the black is a big place for a couple of folks like us.
Ain’t that long ago, while Shan and I came across this barve who said he might have a crew we’d fit into. Shan doesn’t believe it. He’s been on his own a lot longer than I have with this shit though. I’m willing to listen, I’m willing to talk. Sooner or later the mynocks will catch up to us or worse. And when that day comes, it’ll be good for someone to have our backs. Or, in the surprising circumstance, for us to have someone’s back.
OOC Note: I’ve been developing a new character via RP on Steam. She was originally meant to be my TOR character, but I brought her up in the timeline and decided to change things a bit. See where she went. So far the RP has been fantastic. She’s even brought out things in my other character Aayhan Ahi that I wasn’t sure were there. I hope you enjoy the story, there’s a few holes in it that call for questions to be answered and I hope to do that with future shorts.
OOC Note: Another story written with the fucking incredible Steve Renn. Posted with permission.
Looking between each other, the shaman were uneasy. A storm had gathered here, a vicious swell of tumbling gray clouds sheared by the winds high in the firmament, walls of clouds curling in and eating themselves like some starved otherworldly thing. They belched lightning and wept rain, forming as a dark mist in the distance as that great mass approached the jungle.
(Metamorphosis Part 1)
A human player from the Coruscant bolo-ball team weaved the ball in and out of the collection of players from the Tralus team. They raced after the player, designated as number eleven from his mesh jersey. Eltich Ahi cursed quietly in Mando’a, not wishing to wake his wife as she slept; her head reading against his thigh. The long, shapely tendrils of her lekku wrapped loosely around the arm he had draped over her side. She mumbled quietly in her sleep as she always did, her lips barely moving. “…used to represent our ignorance of the states of systems that are actually in one or another pure state, and although this has seemed to many to be an adequate way of interpreting mixtures in classical contexts, there are serious obstacles to applying it generally to quantum mechanical mixtures.” He looked away from the game, a faint hint of amusement in his eyes as he looked over the lithe form of the Tolian Twi’lek who had surrendered herself so completely to him. He wondered for a brief moment what was in her head, why she always spoke in her sleep. It was a thought that drifted back to his subconscious mind when he returned his attention to the game, just in time to see Tralus snag control of the ball from Coruscant. “…it occurs in a situation where quantum mechanical effects should describe these actions due to the extremely high density and therefore particle interactions. To date it has not been possible to combine quantum and gravitational effects into a single theory. It is generally expected that a theory of quantum gravity will feature black holes without singularities.”
(Ayy’shiri felt reborn after a certain point in her training. This marks that transition.)
Her gloved fingers raced over the commands to manually push the engines into overdrive. Twenty three hundred.
With a quick motion and a gleeful laugh she yanked the stick to the right, forcing the light craft to roll up and over an incoming asteroid. She was free and more importantly, she knew her name. Aay’han. It was how she was born into the life of an asr’manda. It was how she lived each day. In speaking with her Hibi’buir only a few hours previously, the realization had dawned upon her. A lesson on Aay’han after a night of sheer joy. The Tolian would not take a name until she became verd and she had told him that much. What she didn’t tell him was that she never wished to be adopted as his daughter.
She didn’t understand why, knowing the pride and honour it would bring her to not only become verd but part of the aliit Ahi. She wouldn’t presume to know, nor would she presume that it would be her place. It had, afterall, only been a week; another fact she could hardly believe. It felt like she had been doing this for years.
As she passed through the asteroid field she brought the engines down to idle and manuovered the little starfighter so that she could stare down at the planet below.
She had a home now. She had a family now.
The twi’lek smiled as she leaned back in her seat and watched the weather patterns spiral over the planet’s surface.
He told her to take all the time she needed to think on the lesson in patience and silence that he had taught her. They both knew she’d not be up here long. She couldn’t stay away. Not from her training. Not from him. Time and time again she reminded herself that she was his student and she was in mourning. She also knew that she wouldn’t allow herself anything. Too much had happened and too much needed to be done was her constant reminder.
It held strong.
This face looks back at me. It’s cold and mechanical, I can tell I wasn’t sure if I was building another of my Pit Droids or something new. She is new. She is me in an odd way. RU-N4N is the moniker of identity I’ve given her, Runan is what she’ll be called. A remote controlled droid unit with no obvious ties to me. She has two A.I. processors, one is a dummy unit should she get into a situation that would infringe on her remote operation. The second is entirely disabled until a time when Punkal, Arazil and Kal can activate it. I hope that day never comes. And I hope that they take the precautions to safeguard those keys they have in case anything happens to them. Though, that’s a day I hope I never see.
He sleeps so peacefully beside me, holding onto me as if I were Mister Bantha. It makes it difficult to continue my work, but I have no desire to move. This was never a place I expected to be in my life and perhaps that’s the reason I’ve decided to keep a personal log of my research and adventures. If they could even be called adventures…
Perhaps in time we’ll adopted a clutch of snotlings and this will serve a purpose in telling them the story of their psuedo-parents. Perhaps it’ll just be a datachip that is eroded over time when it is dropped and forgotten. Perhaps, even in my worst nightmare, it’ll be found by Imperials when I have finally gone too far. Though, should that day come, I’ll wish them luck on breaking the encryption.
Maybe I’ll just leave it unlocked…
I’ve got this feeling that if I ever go down, it won’t be for the petty salvage that Arazil and I clean up and peddle. Or the contracts I take from time to time to serve as a simple spanner jockey for the Rebellion when they need an expert eye on their crafts.
Something tells me it’ll be for something that I haven’t even seen coming up on the horizon. Which only goes to tell me I need to step up my game. My job requires me to keep my record pristine. A smiling face to represent Quantum Mechanics. Legitimate credits to back a not so legitmate employer. I’ll never forget the look on Punkal’s face when I told him I could make ships in the name of the Glaston’s. Then again, I love getting him to make that face. Watching as his brain processes if what I’m saying is even possible, then the light to his eyes when he realizes that he’s talking to me.
I specialize in the improbable.
And the impossible.
Which is why she stares at me right now.
I think Kaliper was a little more than distressed when I put her down beside the edge of the bed.
RU-N4N. A little joke of what I’ve become. I wonder how many will get it and understand my walking, talking, “Kriff off” to my own culture. I think it’s because of that, that I choose to leave behind the ‘da’ in my name. I am no longer the second of two, in reality, I’ve always been solitary. My twin died the day we were born. I could go further and say that I’m not really a Shiri anymore either, but that would be a lie with my father so close to me.
Kriff, my father… I don’t want to see his hotel bills from West Carova…
OOC Note: Kwade Demar aka Oranbega is responsible for the Mythosaur and Mando’a in the center of the battle ring.
OOC Note: With SWG going down on December 15th, I figured it was time to show off some of the decor I’ve done ingame. This particular structure was a large generic. It was the first decor project I’d done since my return to game in Feburary and it served as my character, Ayy’shiri’s (later Aay’han Ahi) office.
[Holofeed Activated. Alema-4]
Doctor Ayy’shiri gave the mans hand a firm shake as soon as she pocketed the credit stick he handed her. “Was a pleasure doing business, Mister Benim.” She set her hands together just below her chest and bowed down deeply before she stepped back to stride to the back of the shipyard and raise the doors.
“And if your modifications do—“
(These are the collected journals of a character I played for a short period of time named, Ven’shiri.)
SO! I get off the comm with my ex-wife, Shavi… she’s a piece of work, let me tell you! But she’s not the point. The point is, I paid three credits to have this Rodian man fellatiate me in the back of the Mos Eisley cantina. I never expected their snouts to feel so good!
Best two credits I ever spent!
(Written by a good friend, Orange Bagel aka Oranbega and I. Reposted with permissions.)
The mucus-petina’d body of Xenku Ral rose from the edge of the river bank–body brazen and toned around his loin cloth, besmirched only by the soil smeared about his torso from the afternoon’s task. He carried in a suction-cupped hand a river phraple, snapped at the neck, as he stepped strong and purposefully up the bank gazing out toward Crusher’s Junction. Tossing a sack of supplies over his shoulder he slowly made his way back toward the junkyard, casting glances to and fro an the fall foliage that surrounded him.