Conversations in the Sand (Srida Ki’Sro – SWG)
Tatooine winds tossed sand against the exterior duracrete walls of the small home Sridaki’Sro had moved into. The very winds that used to soothe her, drowning out the ideas she was sure to be over thinking, now kept her awake. The sand was speaking to her. Then again, it was likely to be a figment of her imagination. Her eyes fluttered open, bright turquoise orbs slowly letting the dark break revealing the familiar silhouettes of her room.
“You were gone a long time, Sridaki.”
It wasn’t her imagination, but what else could it be. She hadn’t heard voices since she embraced the Force. And even then, she believed she was going insane. With a groan she closed her eyes again, covering her head under her Ikopi hide blanket as she turned over and buried her face against the back of the elderly man who slept beside her.
“You know, he hasn’t been happier since she returned.”
Forget sleep. She wasn’t dreaming of this, it wasn’t her imagination. The small tolian Twi’lek tossed the blanket to the side and sat up, opening her eyes against great protest from her tired body. Her vision was not greeted by the dark peace of her room but the pulsing prismatic energy that she knew to be the Heart of the Library. No longer could she feel the smooth Nabooian silk of her sheets or the warmth from the human next to her. She now stood within the Current and felt nothing. It was a familiar void that greeted her, one she welcomed and often sought, though never when the rare moments of solitude and peace would envelop she and her Mind. Nights when they could sleep alongside each other without the business of the Library bustling around them, without Nasaari crying.
“You’re not a creation of the Current.” Srida tells the Heart with defiance, believe that maybe, her reason would prevail and this would all just be a dream.
“No,” said the Nomad, “I am not,” and presently he was there with her. They were standing atop a broad plateu, wind-swept and dry. It was a place he would be most comfortable, and so it was here that he was being presented. “But what is the current, really?” He smiled. It could almost have been him, in the flesh.
“It is the flow of the Force itself. It neither protects nor heals. It harbors no emotions.“
“And it hides this place. You became the Voice after you became a Fallanassi, Sridaki. But I’m not certain you understand why.”
“I think I do, sometimes.”
“You cannot speak for the Library, for Deson nor his damnable Fool without being the very river that carries their power. You cannot guide my steps without building the roads.”
“But that isn’t-“
“in your job description?” The image that was the Nomad laughed easily. “This is not a job. The Mind didn’t choose you for your abilities anymore than he loves you for your beauty. We do not fight fate. You were born to become the Voice, Sridaki. You were born to hide this place. You were meant to sing; every note that comes from your lips, every verse, has always conveyed the emotions here.”
“I was born a Teras Kasi. I was born of Fire and Passion.”
Nomad afforded a slight grin. “We don’t have an audience, Sridaki,” he says coolly. Even for a Fallanassi, this Voice was stubborn, going on too long to realize that she had failed. The Nomad, as realized by the Heart, would not allow this to continue.
“Look at your life. What draws you back here? Why haven’t you died in your pretentious war? Because that is not your fate, it is merely what you chose to waste your time doing. Twiddling your lekku as if you had better things to do. Toying with a danger that could destroy us. Must I tell you the end of the story for you to understand what you must do, Voice?”
“I… I… “
“You’re uncertain because you won’t aknowledge the truth. Let me be more clear,” he said.
“The Alliance prevails without you. Should you keep fighting, I will have to kill you for bringing war to our home. You will plea to be forgiven, and I will not be unsympathetic. But as Deson’s compassion is boundless, so is my conviction.”
The Voice could not bring herself to speak. She didn’t know if she needed to hear truth or wanted to hear a beautiful lie. The energy of the Heart shifted, this was her reality with all her choice and repercussions being laid out before her.
“If you take the hard way in, but with only half of your spirit, cling to the worldly things in your life which substitute for fulfillment, you will find it. But you will no longer be the Voice; you will lose your ability to speak for anything, let alone yourself. The Fallanassi will come to hate you as much as they dislike your Deson. And you will be alone in the sand. Because you had to have it all.”
“Because I wanted to be a Mother to my child?!” She yelled back at the Heart.
He was impassive. “It is time, I think, for you to decide,” the Nomad said thoughtfully. “What do you do, Sridaki?”
For a moment she struggled. She and her heart had not agreed in some time. Not since Nasaari had brought herself into the Current.
“I remove myself from everything in this world, as Deson has done. To show the Galaxy, not me, but an aspect of myself. A show, put on to carry out an aspect of life that we cannot survive without. If I raise Nasaari, she will only become me and that fate is a travesty to the power that she has building inside of her.” Her throat closes with an onslaught of tears, the idea of giving up her child, of leaving her Rebellion. Change never suited her. “I will become a part of this place, this Current once I have found a Voice with a song sweeter than my own.”
“And that will be your choice?”
“Y…” She swallowed down her doubt, her tears. “Yes.”
“Then you will die in the eyes of the Galaxy. Kasarai’vin will be the woman they come to know. She will be a slave, bought for a high price by one who values her voice. She will be a rarity, even in her clan. You will become a part of the Current when the Father makes love to you. It will be the first time and it will be the last. Sridaki, you’ve given your life and your heart to this place. And you will have given your daughter over to the Fallassai. They will help her to reach her own destiny.”
Srida watches the energy, her heart at peace with her mind and soul over the decision she had made. With wide eyes she knew exactly what she was looking at now, she knew what the Heart was. And she knew what it could be. For now, she knew her choices.