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Saga - Legends "And death shall have no dominion", drama about Krennic´s daughter, a mix of canon & legends

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by AzureAngel2, Mar 24, 2018.

  1. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    interesting history
     
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  2. Kahara

    Kahara Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 3, 2001
    =D= This part really blew me away with the cinematic imagery and the way that it includes things that we saw in the sequel trilogy. I'm really enjoying Cassie's introduction to the world of art and her boundless enthusiasm for the ways that it reflects what she senses about the universe around her. And it's been really interesting to see how she gets along so well with Vader (of all people :vader:)!
     
  3. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    @DarthUncle: Thanks for complementing me on Nagina like this! For this you have won a midnight ice cream because this city is too hot too sleep anyway tonight.



    I hope your dialysis sister is not crossed with me for filling too much sugar into you.


    @earlybird-obi-wan: I had hoped to lure a fellow fanfic artist into this story. Thanks!


    @Kahara: Let me spoiler you a bit. There will be a very interesting relationship between her and Vader in future.

    Okay, I am off to bed, if the current heat wave allows me.

    My husband should be going, too. He is still very exited after his first
    peritoneum dialysis ever.

    Anyway, here we go @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha and everybody who is still interested in this fic:



    "And death shall have no dominion", Chapter 5:

    Under the watchful eyes of my father we continue to look at Alderaanian glass art and a number of mosaics. I sit upright in my hover chair and demonstrate more strength than I actually have left. It is just a question of time until we head home again. Which is a pity for I am enjoying myself very much. But something is eating at my soul. I am torn between happiness and great sorrow.

    Even though Mitth'raw'nuruodo is still in conversation with Ob Kaddor I can tell that he is not missing the slightest detail of the art he is scanning with his crimson eyes.

    When we come into the 'Corellian chamber' the lips of my father show deep contempt. “Street art? Seriously?”

    “I thought you would feel rather at home among graffiti and wall paintings,” says the commodore with something close to satisfaction.

    My father puts his hands on his hips, looking exhausted. “Hey, do I look like a person who would willingly deface power boxes, street lamps, traffic signs and other street furniture?”

    “I think you are capable of a lot of mischief and unsanctioned actions, my dear Orson,” Mitth'raw'nuruodo answers, the eerie ghost of a smile on his lips.

    “Again, for the daft and hearing impaired among us, guerilla art is totally not my thing.” His brows come together. “I am an architect and engineer. My building complexes and battle stations should be enough proof. To crawl through the night for some forbidden kick is not me.”

    “Are you sure?”

    “What exactly has Tarkin... the old stinker... said about me?”

    “You really would not want to know.”

    Oh, au contraire. I insist. Spill the beans!”

    We all come to a halt in front of a wall that is sprayed with figures and signs. There is also a side table with spray paint and a box with gum shields.

    “I cannot believe that they really ask us to do this.” My father is outraged. “This is a call of civil disobedience. I will write a letter of complaint to the art gallery director.”

    “You could simply give it a try, daddy.”

    His nasal wings flutter and his facial colour looks unhealthy. “No thank you,” he says, a hard edge to his voice.

    “I will then,” announces the commodore and takes a spray can containing black colour.

    Within no time he adds grey, white and blue and we behold the perfect image of an Imperial Star Destroyer in the depths of space.

    “Show-off,” groans my father, but picks up a can with red colour.

    When he has finished, the six-spoked symbol of our beloved Empire decorates the wall as well.

    “I'm out,” Ob Kaddor says, his lips turned downward in a frown. “If you would excuse me, gentlemen and little mistress, I have other things to attend to.”

    I watch the Alderaanian artist storm out of the room.

    “Not really a fan is he?” comments my father.

    “Time will tell,” replies Mitth'raw'nuruodo, his eyes glittering. “The change of government concept seems to hit the population of Alderaan very hard. I wonder if this has to do with the Sith Empire of old.”

    My father looks as if he just has eaten something sour and rather unpleasant. “Sith Empire? That is centuries ago.”

    “For some planets the past plays an important role in current political decisions.”

    “Gah, that is too far fetched. You over-analyse this, blue fairy.”

    “Mark my words, there will be more systems that need to be aligned. All has happened before and all will happen again.”

    I move my hover chair away from them and investigate a strange looking street installation.

    It is a number of badly damaged speed gliders that are piled up to some sort of tower.

    Their sight reminds me of something, but I cannot put a finger on it. I have never been to Corellia before, but I do like what I see in so far.

    Then my eyes catch something funny. Somebody has knitted a scarf like shape around a pipe. It has all the colours of the rain bow. Attached to it are doughnuts and tea cups, also done with wool.

    “Yarn bombing,” I read the explaining sign. “What a funny idea, daddy!”

    “It is vandalism, Cassie.” There is a raw edge to his gaze, that tells me that I have stepped out of my league once again. “And nothing more!”

    “But it would make Coruscant a much brighter and more cheerful place if we had some of those, too.”

    Casually, my father leans against a column.

    Suddenly, all the lights go off, but not for long. LED installations flash on instead.

    “Only these lights here can be seen as art as long as they are sanctioned by the authorities,” he says smugly. “Otherwise they are evidence of damage. And mind me there are high prison sentences these days, when state property gets compromised.”

    “But what about artistic freedom?” I demand to know.

    “We have been here too long,” I can hear my father's voice in the semi-dark. “It is time to go home.”

    Two red lights with a life of their own come closer to us.

    With some time delay I notice that it is but the commodore joining us again.

    “We only have seen twenty-five percent of what the Coruscant Art Gallery has to offer,” he points out.

    My father is not happy. “Nobody has warned me that museum pedagogues have infiltrated this place. It is all about participation out of a sudden.”

    “I kind of like this style.” Mitth'raw'nuruodo sounds enthusiastic. “It turns art experiences into real experiences. This is one of the best galleries I have been to in so far.”

    “Just two more rooms for today,” I beg. “Daddy, please! I will even take shooting lessons from Uncle Alex, just as you asked me one week ago.”

    The light flashes on again.

    With haunted eyes my father replies, “Fair enough, little soldier! We have a deal.”

    *******************************************************************

    The 'Mandalore chamber' is but a large weapon arsenal and at first I do not like it. Just looking at them makes me uneasy. Each of them is designed to kill. Besides, they lack the beauty of Lord Vader´s flame sword.

    Then I spot a collection of helmets, once worn by the loyal Clone troops. The individual markings win my interest.

    My father guesses spot on what I am wondering about. “These either show the rank or unit they belonged to.”

    “What are those?” I point at something that looks like wings on one of the helmets.

    Giving the remnant of war a thoughtful gaze my father picks it up. With a long, yet thin metal chain it is fixed to the exhibition table. He turns it around in his hands. “Behold, jai'galaar'la sur'haii'se,” he says. “Better known as 'shriek-hawk eyes' to those who are not fluent in Mando'a.”

    Fascinated, the commodore stares down at the helmet. “Do they have a deeper meaning?”

    Proudly, my father answers, “They serve as a mark of honour, awarded for particular acts of bravery.”

    “It is always good to learn something new.”

    My father places a hand on Mitth'raw'nuruodo´s shoulder. “Then come and meet the Mandalorian cubism.”

    He leads the way towards a row of paintings. As far as I can see they are done with acrylic colours.

    “Most Cubist works can be immediately recognized.”

    “I see what you mean.” The commodore builds up before a portrait. “This is bold and innovative at the same time. No wonder that you like this art form.”

    I join the two men and look at somebody called Duchess Satine. She is a blond human woman with blue eyes and a large head dress. Her face looks funny though. I have never seen anything like it.

    The commodore nods to himself. “All the forms are broken up into angular and geometric shapes. This gives her a flattened, nearly two-dimensional appearance.” He narrows his eyes and takes one step closer towards the canvas. “The colour scheme also strikes me as odd. It is somewhat simplified.”

    I go through all the pictures while they remain in front of the duchess, discussing like old friends for the first time.

    All portraits are like images from people being inside a house of mirrors. Distorted and barely recognizable.

    The markings of the Clone trooper helmets were more to my liking and spoke a much clearer language.

    *******************************************************************

    (To be continued!)
     
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  4. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Wonderful exhibits and commentary ;)
     
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  5. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    artwork described beautifully
     
  6. DarthUncle

    DarthUncle Jedi Master star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Oh, Í haven't commented on here, only IRL as you were writing, I think.

    Nice how this shows the attitude of all three of them :)

    Respect (with admonition that Krennic is maybe a bit too unsubtle at times?) from Thrawn, accepted for what it is by Krennic.

    On the whole, great descriptions of what makes the planet's/cultures art unique, and impressive how you show the individual characters of the three through their reactions to it.
     
  7. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    After we saw so many art exhibitions together the past years, dear husband @DarthUncle, it was worth a try.

    Thanks for still sticking to this story together with @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha and @earlybird-obi-wan. Occasionally, @Kahara and @Cowgirl Jedi 1701 find time to comment, too, despite leading busy lives.

    Okay, I am off soon, still ill with my inflamed larynx and a nasty cough. But we have gotten new kitchen windows and somebody, preferably the one without a tube in the belly, has to clean the place, before:

    a) the people with medicine boxes for dialysis will arrive

    and

    b) our long announced guest for the "Runrig" concert tonight will arrive here.


    (Still Chapter 5!)

    *******************************************************************

    Reading the sign of the next chamber makes my heart beat faster. For it promises the water world Mon Cala, home to the Mon Calmari and the Quarren. Both alien races are amphibious and aquatic.

    Fact is, I am sort of aquatic, too. For I love water. I know it sounds crazy, but for me it is like returning home. The very place I ought to be.

    Occasionally, my father jokes that he has to check for webbing between my fingers and my toes. For possible gills alongside my neck, too. Just to be on the safe side. Social services would have given him the documents for adopting a human girl, not a little mermaid. He would hate to bring me back to the pet shop or were ever mythical creatures belong to.

    My fingers reach up for the door mechanism, but to my disappointment nothing happens. The entrance remains sealed.

    “It has started,” my father sighs, light regret in his voice.

    “What, daddy?” I wonder.

    “Cleaning, Cassie.”

    “In the middle of the day?”

    Our MSE-series droid Fluffy used to clean at night. One time my father hurt his right ankle, when he tripped over it. Ever since we have a real person doing the floors and much more.

    “Give it up, Cassie.” My father's gaze is warm and friendly. “Maintenance must still be going on inside. Perhaps one of the aquariums broke and they want to be extra careful with the splinters.”

    Mitth'raw'nuruodo says nothing, even though I can feel he would like to. Instead, he stands to attention.

    I give the winged doors a considerate look. “Then we come back later. The Mon Cala chamber cannot be closed down the entire day. That would be stupid. Everybody adores the Mon Calamari and the Quarren. I certainly do.”

    The commodore and my father exchange a knowing look.

    “I would like to see the Ryloth chamber now,” I suggest, wondering what is going on between them. Their silent agreement worries me more than their lively discussions.

    “This chamber is under maintenance as well,” Mitth'raw'nuruodo says and I cannot help to detect pity in his voice.

    “Kashyyyk?” I prompt.

    My father shakes his head, his gaze hooded. “It appears that they closed that particular chamber down completely.”

    There is a whisper in my head. It is meek and faint, yet it is telling me that something is wrong in this gallery. That all those chambers should be open to the public.

    “What about Tatooine?” the commodore suggests.

    “Why should someone want to gaze at sand and scum?” my father snaps back. “Do you miss your space pirates so much? Have a break, gundog.”

    “The Falleen chamber?” Mitth'raw'nuruodo adds for consideration.

    “Oh yeah? If I want to look at funny lizards, I rather go to the zoo with Cassie. There she can at least feed them”

    While they argue where to go next, I move on with my hover chair.

    The winged doors of the Tatooine chamber are wide open.

    I do not even look back.

    *******************************************************************

    It does not really surprise me to find Lord Vader standing in the middle of the room. He has never left the building after our first encounter. All this time I was able to feel him with overwhelming clarity. He even has been spying on me, but I did not kick him out of my mind. The loneliness inside him, his hurt speak a clear language to me. This man needs some cheering up.

    “Are you familiar with Tatooine, my prince?”

    A short shiver goes through his body, even his breath seems to be faster. Then he says, “You should go back to them before they start missing you.” With a strange twist in his voice, he adds, “Cassandra Krennic.”

    “But you are not well,” I insist.

    My words make him turn around. “This should be none of your concern,” he states somewhat sternly, but I hear the underlying wonderment in his words.

    I give him a bright smile. “Our cleaning lady says that a day without laughter is a day wasted.”

    The sound Lord Vader makes behind his mask is close to a huff. “I seldom laugh.”

    “This is perhaps the problem.”

    He comes closer.

    One of my favourite bedtime stories is the one about 'BFG', the big friendly giant. I wonder if I will ever get an invitation to Lord Vader's castle. As a prince he surely has one. I imagine it to be situated right next to a beautiful lake. Like the one from my dreams.

    “There need to be rules between you and me in future,” he clips out. “Rules that keep you safe from my wrath.”

    “Then don't give in to it. This wrath of yours.”

    I am not even blinking when the Imperial prince kneels down in front of my chair and takes my hands into his gloved hands. “Hate is all that I have left. That keeps me going.”

    I tilt my head. “You should learn to control it. Ttry out an anger management course. Daddy did one around the time he took me in. It helped him immensely.”

    “Why do you hope so much, child, when all is lost?”

    “There is always a new hope.” I stare straight into his optical lenses. “The light comes back every morning.”

    “What if there was eternal night, Cassandra? If sunlight would never return to you.”

    I shrug. “Then I would start looking for ways to befriend the night.”

    “How?”

    The words come out of nowhere. Like a wall of fire they race through my head.
    Darkness is a friend, an ally. Darkness allows us to understand others, to see what they value when they believe no one else is looking. It allows us to be honest with ourselves, to express those values that we would disavow in the light. The light blinds us. It is only in the dark that we see clearly, and there is a great dark hidden among these worlds.”

    He lets go of me and rises to his full impressive hight. When he puts his right hand on top of my head it is like a benevolent blessing.

    “Cassie!”

    There is more than alarm in my father's voice.

    *******************************************************************

    (To be continued!)
     
  8. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Happy wriggles, Azure! Your Vader interactions continue to be amazing with Cassie's innocent profoundness of insight. =D= And somehow she finds a vulnerable spot in him, while her Dad has all kinds of fits over it! [face_laugh]
     
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  9. Nehru_Amidala

    Nehru_Amidala Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Aha, SHE is Nagina's clone! Right? Loved Thrawn's commentary, of course he would be an expert. The whole experience sounds like something he and Minerva would do on a date night. Aw geez, and Vader!
     
  10. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Vader and Tatooine, that gives him the creeps
     
  11. DarthUncle

    DarthUncle Jedi Master star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Woot, Cassie channeling her inner Nagina, done well. Though Anakin and Nagina seemed to have a, well, difficult relationship, Vader seemed to have found more to be intrigued about (I guess being in the misery of the dark side does that to a person?), and he might also grow to appreciate Cassie, spooked as he is about her now. Not to mention how spooked her father must be to have Vader interact with her, the guy he knows was around Nagina shortly before she died.

    About the cleaning; I seem to recall we both cleaned, since, while I have this chronic illness, you are in fact at home bc. you have an active viral+bacterial infection ... Anyway, the stuff is here and ready to use from tomorrow; and Runrig was great fun.
     
  12. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha: Then my plans are playing out fairly well! Mission accomplished.


    @Nehru_Amidala: I could give you story links if you want proof of your theory. ;)


    @earlybird-obi-wan: It does indeed.


    @DarthUncle: @};-
    There must be a place
    Under the sun
    Where hearts of olden glory
    Grow young [face_love]

    Now the finishing touch of this chapter!


    (Still Chapter 5!)

    *******************************************************************

    For the sixth time in a row, my father pauses his spoon and says, “And he just came back to ask you for the address of Mistress Billilo?”

    My Wookie cookie ice seems to have lost all its taste. “He confirmed it to you, daddy, didn't he? Why do you keep pushing me?”

    Mitth'raw'nuruodo remains a silent witness once more. I cannot even hear him drinking his Joghan berries milkshake through his straw. He just sits glued to his chair with a face hard to read.

    It feels bad lying to my father. He raised me to be truthful. There is a code of honour within the Krennic household.

    We have an Imperial identity that we live by. I am an officer's daughter and that means that my father is also my superior. But Lord Vader is next to the Emperor and I am supposed to honour the head of state.

    My father looks at me, shakes his head and stares on. I am sure he will not finish his ice café today. “No physiotherapist will ever be able to help that creature,” he remarks with a raised index finger, trying to make a point. “From my point of view Vader is a lost cause.”

    “Nobody should be left behind,” I argue, my cheeks heated. “Certainly not by our beloved Empire.”

    “Too late for that, I am afraid. Vader looks like the leftovers of a rancor meal, carelessly squeezed together into an ancient armour.”

    “We do not know what is underneath his mask,” I warn my father.

    “A cripple, that is for sure.”

    The commodore puts his milkshake down on the table. “Speculations about His Lordship are dangerous.”

    “Because Vader is the pet toy of the Emperor?” my father sneers, his face all of a sudden ugly.

    “And they call me a disgrace to the fleet.” Each word that comes out of Mitth'raw'nuruodo's mouth is full of reproach. “You should reconsider your verbal ammunition, Orson.”

    “Says the art nerd giving his environment an image analysis all the time. And if there is no painting at hand, weapons, jewellery and other items of daily use get scanned by his laser brain instead.”

    “At least my fixation with art delivers good results. It does not annoy people overly much like a little architect and engineer who feels left out by the entire galaxy.”

    “That's what you believe, firefly. There is talk. Many are not overly happy about the favours the Emperor bestows you with.”

    It is amazing that grown-ups can forget about children, when they argue with one another. Uncle Alexsandr is like this, too. My father always tickles the worst out of another man. But than again, he is awkward around women, too.

    I continue eating my ice, sure that a lot of “classified” things get discussed right in front of me.

    The ice parlour is quiet at this time of day. We are the only ones upstairs. Most people sit outside on the plaza, but my skin and my eyes are too sensitive for direct solar radiation.
    I start hoping that my existence will never be a shadow life like Lord Vader has. His war injuries make it necessary for him to wear his armor. Protective as it is, it is a cage though. I feel sorry for him, even though this is the last thing he wants from me. Pity will not help him in the least. It only angers him.

    ********************************************************************

    With the promise to visit us soon, Mitth'raw'nuruodo departs from us right in front of our apartment building. My father is strangely quiet on our way up. Even in the bathroom he goes through all the motions without saying a word. Normally, he sings for me.

    But things go from bad to worse.

    Instead of bringing me to bed, he carries me into his office and places me down on the visitor chair.

    “I would like to have a word with you, Cassandra,” he says and walks around to face me from the other side of his desk. Even in his under-shirt and with his trousers he is impressive. The air of a high ranking Imperial officer radiates off him.

    “Of course, daddy,” I gulp, awed and fearful at the same time.

    “I know you cannot help being yourself.” His face is emotionless, a smooth surface really. “But what you did today on many levels threatens this family unit. Can you comprehend that?”

    I sink my head and nod, not able to stand his gaze any longer.

    “Please look at me when I talk to you!”

    Even whispered his words explode in my ears like thermal detonators.

    “You let Thrawn and Vader enter our little world today. Alexsandr will have a freak when he hears about it and I am not too happy either.” He leans on his desk and I have trouble not to shrink back from him. “I have many secrets, Cassandra. Your safety depends on most of them. I could get executed for some of my actions in the past.”

    Tears well up in my eyes and I hate myself for being such a crybaby in front of my father.

    “I have no clue where we go from here. Thrawn and Vader are a league of their own. To understand them is difficult. Anything can happen now.”

    I bite my lip.

    “Our only chance is that both men are impressed by you. It might be an advantage to survive all this. But please, show more consideration in future. Not every high ranking officer who serves our Emperor is automatically a good person. I told you so before. We are only humans and seek our advantage for survival. The weak will be wiped out by the stronger ones.”

    To follow his line of thought is difficult, but I try my best.

    “Do not trust foreigners with all your heart, Cassandra. Deceit is at the core of most human beings and Thrawn is not even human. As for Vader...” He throws up his hands in the air. “… he is but an invalid with dangerous Force powers.”

    My heart hurts in my chest. “Will that be all, daddy?”

    “I feel like making you write down the sentence, “I am far too trusting with others.” for at least a hundred times.” A little smile surfaces on his lips. “But I doubt that it will help my course overly much. You are a very wilful little lady.”

    We do not gaze at each other too long, because I pipe up, “Can we please hug, daddy?”

    My father rushes into my waiting arms eagerly. “You will break me apart,” he whispers. “I don't know when and how, but you will.”

    It makes me sad that he would think so.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2018
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  13. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Adored this opening quote:
    There must be a place
    Under the sun
    Where hearts of olden glory
    Grow young...


    Gave me happy, happy chills! [:D] @};-

    My gracious! Orson and Thrawn do snark with low blows! :eek:

    Cassie has the compassion of youth, which I hope she never loses, but there are realities that constrain what changes Vader can and cannot experience & secrets that are better not revealed. :oops:

    =D=
     
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  14. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha: Thanks for your compassion for fanfic and your motivating feedback. Plus your voluntary beta work. [:D]
     
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  15. DarthUncle

    DarthUncle Jedi Master star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Heh, great characterisation of Krennic there, poor daddy.
    Oh, yeah, that's the central external tension of this story, isn't it. And then there is
    ... because as Krennic alludes too, he's not really one of the good ones, even if he's also one of the 'impressed by you' ones too - ironic in a way, he warns her for men like him (just ask Jynn Erso!); he's right of coure, but still.
    ... but, that's her strength, as it was Nagina's, too see their potential for good in them, if only they'd make the right choices. As he did in rescuing her.
    Aww. Crushingly sad, but sweet too. These are precarious times for the brave little girl, and the self-styled father by choice.
     
  16. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    a woman can see the good in all
     
  17. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    @DarthUncle: Thanks for giving me the "crushingly sad, but sweet" comment! I like to entertain you, husband of mine. [face_love]


    @earlybird-obi-wan: Cassandra is not a woman yet, but a little girl. This is why Krennic, Agent Kallus, Thrawn and even Vader are so overprotective like MV nanny droids to her.

    Okay, here is the update, because I am going to a con with @Cem_Fel this weekend and @DarthUncle stays behind. Girly weekend with German audio plays. Have fun reading @Kahara, @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha, @Nehru_Amidala, @Cowgirl Jedi 1701 and @DarthMarly.


    "And death shall have no dominion", Chapter 6:

    When I wake up in the morning I am hot and uncomfortable. I give my best to look healthy, knowing that my father has an important day ahead of him. He has to make a presentation at the office.

    Unfortunately, Mary does her duty and, before I can stop her, she reports my status immediately.

    With the purposefulness of an AT-AT Walker my father enters the room.

    I smile at him. “Good morning, daddy!”

    My father gives me an acknowledging nod. “Hi there, little beauty!”

    I ache at the sight of him. There is shaving foam on his face still. Modern technique cannot tempt him. He prefers his cartridge razor. For him, it's an aesthetic journey back to the root of his male essence, to real mastery. Once I overheard him telling Uncle Alex, “If shaving isn't the most invigorating part of your day, then you're doing it wrong.”

    Today my father did something unusual though. He cut himself. There is a deep gush on his chin. But he does seem too care for the blood that slowly runs down his throat. He walks up to my bed, his left palm coming down on my forehead.

    “38.8 degree Celsius,” he repeats the MV nanny droid's diagnosis. Then he shakes his head, his eyes as determined as his pose. “There is no way that I can go to work and leave you behind like this.”

    “That meeting of yours, you need to go, daddy,” I protest, knowing how many sleepless nights have been spent on that particular presentation.

    “Meetings come and go.” He shrugs. “I just have one daughter.”

    “You have worked so hard for it,” I say, not able to restrain an edge of impatience with him. “Everybody will be there.”

    My father huffs, his eyes narrowing. “Everybody.”

    I watch him turn away from me, smearing the foam off his face. In slow motion he wipes his hands clean on his thighs. Fortunately, he is in his pyjama trousers still. The Gaberwool of his Imperial uniform is difficult to clean from cosmetic products of any kind. I know because we tried before with skin lotion of mine.

    “Everybody,” my father repeats in a tone that makes me shiver all over.

    “Are you okay, daddy?” I enquire softly, seeing that he is the opposite of okay. He looks like the lost little bantha calf in one of my favourite bed time stories. Much louder I repeat, “Daddy?”

    He does not answer, just stares out of my bedroom window, breathing in an odd rhythm. Then his lips move, but he is not speaking to me. Instead sings with a throaty voice,

    “Everybody knows that the dice are loaded
    Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed
    Everybody knows the war is over
    Everybody knows the good guys lost
    Everybody knows the fight was fixed
    The poor stay poor, the rich get rich
    That's how it goes
    Everybody knows”


    Sometimes my father has moods like that. They never last long, but make me afraid for his well-being. There is chaos deep inside his beautiful mind.

    “Everybody knows that the boat is leaking
    Everybody knows that the captain lied
    Everybody got this broken feeling
    Like their father or their dog just died
    Everybody talking to their pockets
    Everybody wants a box of chocolates
    And a long-stem rose
    Everybody knows”


    His voice booms forth with its warnings and mischievous wit.

    “Everybody knows that you love me baby
    Everybody knows that you really do...”


    My father stops abruptly and hammers against the glass. Over and over again.

    I wince with each hit, worried that he might break his hands.

    Finally, he hangs his head and leans his brow against the window.

    “It does not matter, Cassie.” His voice seems to come from the other side of the universe. He might as well stand on Dantooine or Endor. “My project is doomed anyway.”

    I can see his shoulders becoming even more tense with every word that leaves his mouth.

    “First those damned Geonosians, then Galen stepped off unannounced for a hiatus. We were on the verge of greatness.”

    He lets out a mighty roar.

    “We were so awfully close to providing peace and security for the galaxy.”

    Now he bangs his head against the glass. Once, twice.

    “Daddy?” I whine.

    He spins around and gapes at me for several seconds.

    “But you said, that he made up his mind when you visited him on Lah'mu.” Frowning, I hold on to my bed cover. “That the project is back on the track.”

    Suddenly, he starts tap-dancing through the room, but he looks pretty grim.

    “You are back on the track right, daddy?”

    My father starts singing again with his voice drenched in darkest sarcasm.

    “Give 'em the old razzle dazzle
    Razzle Dazzle 'em
    Give 'em an act with lots of flash in it
    And the reaction will be passionate
    Give 'em the old hocus pocus
    Bead and feather 'em
    How can they see with sequins in their eyes?”


    He scoffs.

    “What if your hinges all are rusting?
    What if, in fact, you're just disgusting?”


    Having sang thus, he drops to the floor with his arms and legs stretched out wide.

    “No, I don't need no bantha poodoo today. Nor do I want Tarkin looking down on me with his gang for not having finished yet. I might as well call in sick and spend the rest of my week with you.”

    I prop myself up on my elbows. “You never reported in sick, daddy. Not for a single day the past four years.”

    “How would you know, young lady?” he exclaims in a gossipy way.

    “Uncle Alex said so.”

    He makes a briefly disgusted noise. “Spying on me, has he?”

    “No,” I stress with my cheeks heated. And it is not the fever doing that. “He just answered my request.”

    My father gets up to his full impressive height of 1 meter 80. That makes him much smaller than Lord Vader, but to me he will always be a giant. Recently, I tried his military boots on and they were like a fishing boat.

    “The roles in this household should be kyber crystal clear.” He makes himself comfortable at the edge of my mattress. “I am the grown-up around here, little soldier. That makes me your commanding officer, does it not?”

    There is but mockery and tenderness in his words and I relax a bit. Not too much though. “But as your daughter it is my duty to make sure that you can serve our Empire. And to be honest, sir, you...” I consider hard, but gather the necessary courage anyway, “… you suck pro-pro… hum… profoundly in taking good-care of yourself.”

    “Is that so?” he asks in a subdued voice.

    I nod.

    His smile is crooked. “My life style is perhaps not ideal at times.”

    “Unhealthy,” I offer.

    “But I fear that I need to finish that space station for the benefit of the Empire. Including you.” He looks down at our mingled fingers. “This galaxy will be safer with the light and insight that my construction will bring.”

    “Then everybody will know how clever and talented my daddy is?” I ask.

    My father gives me a quirky smile, the one that melts my heart so easily. There are times when he can look like a mooka puppet.

    Quickly I add, “Even the Emperor, who never shows up for those meetings will find out how great you are.”

    To my astonishment, he starts singing again. Much softer than before.

    “Baby I've been here before
    I've seen this room and I've walked this floor
    I used to live alone before I knew you
    I've seen your flag on the marble arch
    But love is not a victory march
    It's a cold and it's a broken hallelujah”


    ********************************************************************

    We are in the middle of breakfast, huddled together in my bed with an overloaded tray and Mary switched off, when Uncle Alex jumps into the room like a raiding party.

    “I hate to interrupt this unique father-daughter moment,” he says sarcastically and takes off his ISB combat helmet, “But there is a room full of thirty people waiting for a certain project manager.”

    My father gazes back at my godfather. “Since when does Tarkin list you up for a suicide commando? He knows exactly where I live.”

    “Be glad that it is just me, Orson. The viceroy wanted to come along.”

    “Are we talking about Sate, the old misfit, or the horned blue beast who degraded me some years ago?”

    “Argh, stop making jokes and get dressed!”

    Uncle Alex starts to drag away my blanket unceremoniously.

    “Whoa,” warns my father, pointing his blaster pistol at his comrade. “Don't you dare expose my feverish child to cold air!”

    Blinking, Uncle Alex stares down at us. “Just because Cassie is ill, you stay in? Is that right?”

    My father secures his blaster again and puts back on my night stand.“The nanny droid is incapable to take over from me.”

    I can see a lot of emotions flashing over Uncle Alex' pretty face, before he suggests, “I can take it from here.”

    “Negative. This is my parcel.” With that my father puts our tray away and places a protective arm around my shoulders. “You, Agent Kallus, would only make things worse.”

    “Cassie will not die from a mere fever, Director Krennic.”

    Each time they start to address each other with their military title, things go from bad to worse. They both have the temper of reeks during mating season.

    “Cassie, dearest, you would never willingly die on me, would you?” my godfather asks sweetly.

    I giggle.

    “Good.” Uncle Alex nods, seeming somewhat satisfied with my cooperation. “And now do me the favour and push your old, useless dad out of that bed. Use that blaster if necessary to poke him. Oh and tell him that the Empire always comes first. Not personal indulgence.”

    ********************************************************************

    (To be continued!)
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2018
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  18. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Excellent post Azure! Cassie has both men wrapped -- so endearing!
     
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  19. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    great post with the poems
     
  20. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha & @earlybird-obi-wan, it is always great to have readers and feedback.

    Of late my life has been very complicated and I try to do my best to stay sane. @DarthUncle urges me to keep writing. Against all odds.

    So here is my new update, because I will be busy off-line for the rest of the week plus this weekend & next weekend:



    ********************************************************************

    After another ten minutes my father, perfectly dressed in his gala uniform, is on his way to his conference meeting after all. But he throws obscene curses into Uncle Alex' face, when he boards the small military flight, which has landed on our balcony.

    “Sure, you can do all that to me and much more when you come back, Orson!” promises my godfather with a sly smirk. “At least you can try and I might show enough kindness to leave you alive.”

    My father gives a one-finger salute. “Freck you, minger!”

    “Not in front of my godchild.” The smile of Uncle Alex is grim. “Now get lost, before Tarkin sends somebody who values your life much less than I do.”

    “I am so sorry, Cassie,” my father calls out, hesitating to squeeze himself inside the vehicle.

    “It's okay, daddy. Please go!” I beg. “You are just ten minutes late.”

    Wrapped in a warm blanket, I throne in my godfather's strong arms like a little Empress. Together we watch the top secret military air craft take flight. It is a small one person ship.

    “Beautiful,” I say approvingly. “I bet it has a cloaking device that makes it invisible for traffic control and others.”

    “Exactly.”

    “Stealth technology is not the only reason why you chose it coming here.” I crinkle my nose. “You wanted to stay behind with me.”

    His gaze is warm and friendly. “At least you inherited enough intelligence from your mother to survive living with this amoeba. How good of you.”

    He talks about my birth-mother so easily. My father never does. She is not part of our life. “Did you know her?”

    “Not personally, but I read her files.” He gives me a considerate look. “Stay away from drugs, the music scene and finish your studies. Then you can achieve what she never did.”

    We start staring into the bright Coruscant morning.

    “Can you imagine that Tarkin even considered the Emperor's hatchet man to do my job?” Uncle Alexsandr chuckles. “Lord Vader would have left your poor father permanently damaged, but he would have gotten him to that meeting in half the time necessary.”

    The sheer mentioning of my dark knight makes my heart go faster. “But the prince is a true gentleman,” I state. “He would never draw his flame sword to hurt a person. Not him.”

    My godfather frowns at me. “How would you know anything about His Lordship?”

    “You would have found out anyway,” I say in a rush.

    The frown deepens, getting an ugly quality to it. “Found out about what?”

    “That he and I talked together at the gallery.” I swallow hard. “Twice.”

    “Excuse me, dearest, you find me a bit confused here.”

    A flame that I do not like a single bit has appeared in his blue eyes. The same one burns in my father now and again. It carries this spark that I also had witnessed inside Mitth'raw'nuruodo yesterday.

    “Did I copy that correctly?” Uncle Alex stresses ever so slowly, sounding like a drill instructor facing a very stupid soldier. “You were out in public since we saw each other last.”

    I nod.

    “And your damned father brought you straight into the rancor's den?”

    I make a face. “My father is not damned. And we were not at the zoo. He took me out to the library and there we met Mitth'raw'nuruodo.”

    “Who?”

    Now Uncle Alex is really agitated and I pray that he will be less furious with me than he is usually with my father.

    ********************************************************************

    Lucky for me my godfather does not follow protocol to get the wanted information out of me. His tortured look is enough to make me talk. So I tell him about how we met Commodore Thrawn. How he warned us about going into the library building. How we ended up bumping into Lord Vader there and then Ob Kaddor.

    Truthfully, I also describe my second meeting with the Imperial prince. I put a great effort into repeating every single word that he said to me.

    Uncle Alex just listens, silently asking me to interrupt my story for cooling breaks here and there. Each time I take a sip, he also checks my temperature and types it into my data pad.

    We are back in my bedroom and he has left the blind folds half closed. But my bedside lamp is on.

    “Are you angry now?” I end.

    He stares back at me. “Yes. Very. Stark raving mad.”

    “Will I get punished now?”

    “What do you expect me to do, dearest? Pull your arms out of their sockets like some mad Wookie? Give you electric shocks?” His gaze turns somewhat solemn. “No, I would never harm you. With or without your father's oath, your life is precious to me.”

    I am relieved to hear that, even though I expected nothing else from my godfather.

    “But I feel like killing your father off when he returns to this apartment.” There is a foul snarl on his face, distorting it. “When I asked him to take you out for a walk then I did not want him to introduce some of the Empire's most dangerous men to you. What is next? Pestage? Tarkin? What was he thinking?”

    ********************************************************************

    Uncle Alex is in the kitchen, preparing lunch for us, when the door alarm sounds.

    “Do we expect anybody today?” he calls out to me.

    “No.”

    All of today's appointments have been cancelled by Mary, before my godfather deactivated the MV nanny droid again. He does not like sharing me with her when he babysits me.

    On his way to the front door, he pops his head in. “Let's hope it's not Vader himself.”

    But the identity of the surprise visitor is much, much better.

    I almost swoon with delight when a flustered Uncle Alexsandr lets Mitth'raw'nuruodo into my bedroom. The Chiss carries a huge attaché case with him, but it seems to be light. For he shows no signs of distress carrying it.

    “Rumour has it that you are ill, Cassandra,” my new friend says while he pauses at the threshold.

    “This is not a rumour,” my godfather stresses. “She has temperature since the early morning hours.”

    “Very well then.” The mauve coloured lips of the Chiss form a benevolent smile. “I brought along something that might lift her spirits. In the truest sense of the word.”

    Saying thus, Mitth'raw'nuruodo puts the case on my bed. Then he activates the opening mechanism and steps back.

    My eyes grow bigger and bigger as a number of mylar balloons rise into the air. They look like fish and start floating around the room as if suspended in water.

    “It's literally a pop-up sculptural work,” the commodore explains. “I asked the gallery to lend me some of the exhibit pieces from the closed down Mon Cala chamber. You may keep them. They won't need them back.”

    “Great,” mumbles Uncle Alex. “Now your room has turned into a fish bowl.”

    “Which was my intention,” gives Mitth'raw'nuruodo back immediately. “Cassandra was sad about all the chambers that are not open for the public eyes any longer.”

    “Thank you,” I cheer and gaze up at the strange ballet that the fish balloons perform all over my bedroom. “This is the coolest present that I ever got.”

    ********************************************************************

    (To be continued!)
     
  21. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Alex is totally put out with the encounter at the museum and then a wonderful surprise: Thrawn with a fun! gift! =D=
     
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  22. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Thrawn is really a nice friend
     
  23. DarthUncle

    DarthUncle Jedi Master star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Great that Thrawn found a way to show her some of the Mon Calamari art, and coming at a great time to ease her illness; though I'd have expected him to time it to perfection and enter in the morning when his name was mentioned (oh, that was Betelgeuse?).

    And again Cassie got to casually suck a bit more info out of Callus, she really has these guys dancing attendance; seemingly even Thrawn! It all reads very natural and 'normal' if one doesn't think about who these are; which keeps giving it this pleasant, slightly off-kilter quality :)
     
  24. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha, @earlybird, @Kahara & @DarthUncle, I am back from the Giant Mountains and have time for a little update in between helping my mother with her flat & the garden.



    (Still Chapter 6!)

    ********************************************************************

    Of course I am able to convince my godfather that our special guest has to have lunch with us. While I enjoy myself to the fullest, the two men regard each other as careful as two opponents in a sabacc tournament would. It is a staring contest really. I start asking myself if members of the military are always acting like this when they meet.

    While both men are seated on opposite sides of my bed, I have a tray on my lap and enjoy the Chandrilan stew that my father had already prepared yesterday. With Mary being deactivated and locked into my closet it will stay a cosy affair. My godfather has baked a fresh soda bread and has cut some fruits for dessert later on.

    “You are good with children,” observes Mitth'raw'nuruodo matter-of-factly.

    “When you have read my personal file, you should know that I am the middle child in a family of five.”

    “I do indeed know that.”

    “Having an older sister and a much younger one certainly helped me to practice to be there for this young lady here.”

    Their words still prowl around one another like a raiding party. It is unnerving really. I start to think that grown-ups are never honest with one another. That they always hold back. Play games.

    It is a pity really. Uncle Alex and Mitth'raw'nuruodo have so much in common. Not only being loyal servants of our Empire. Why should the things that should bind them hold them apart? It gives me a headache.

    “Are you not well, Cassie dear?” enquires my godfather with a frown.

    “If that is the case, I will rather leave you for today,” suggests the commodore.

    “No!” I yelp at the brink of panic.

    “I can come back any other day,” suggests Mitth'raw'nuruodo.

    In my mind's eye, I can already see my father installing spring guns between our front door and my bedroom. Perhaps he will even plant an entire mine field.

    “I would like you to stay very much,” I assert.

    The commodore takes hold of my cramped hands. “I will be back. Now get some rest and heal.” He exchanges an intense gaze with Uncle Alex. “Your godfather will show me out.”
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2018 at 12:02 PM
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  25. DarthUncle

    DarthUncle Jedi Master star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Aww, poor Cassie, trying to make sense, but missing the important bit of info that these men haven't, and won't (yet, in case of Orson, I hope) felt a need to share: the empire is corrupt and evil, and it's means are subservient to the goal of a semi-order in name, but ultimate,inescapable chaos and uncertainty for everyone in reality cannot allow friendship, as it is antithetical to what it's goal and view of the universe is. And still, there is hope, in how/that these men find ways to be kind to Cassie, and encourage her to be the best she can be.

    edit:
    ... eh, yeah, so that was a pretty dark comment; sorry, shouldn't have been reading my twitter feed just now I guess ;)
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2018 at 2:22 AM
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