Child of the Dark Side

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction Stories--Classic JC Board (Reply-Only)' started by Raissa Baiard, Apr 8, 1999.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Luke_and_Mara_4ever Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2000
    star 4
    More? Soon? Next weekend? Maybe?
  2. Raissa Baiard Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 1999
    star 2
    Hi! I'm back home, and as promised, I have a new chapter for you. I have to work on Her Brother's Keeper and the Paralell SW Universe next, but I already know what the next post will be, so I'll get it to you ASAP. I am, however, tempted to threaten not to post until someone, anyone posts on my new/old story "Everyone Comes to Doran's Place." Not to be immodest, but I really do think it's a good story. Plus if you read it, you'll get to meet Imperial Vice-Prefect Raissa Baiard, the character who gave me my nom-de-plume. :) Please give it a look, so I won't have to make good on my threat. ;)

    Thanks! Now on with the story....
    *********************************
    Pheylan listened attentively to the story, both in Jaina's presence in the Force and her spoken words, as much as he could hear them. Mara was a captive audience as the girls sat with their hands pressed against her stomach. She knew the tale well enough to have recited it along with Jaina-- Lucya insisted that Luke tell it at least once a day-- but she found it more interesting to observe the children's reactions to one another. Jaina wore a bemused expression. Telling stories to a cousin who had yet to be born was apparently a slightly surreal experience for her. Communicating with Pheylan through Mara didn't bother Lucya, though. She was still young enough to believe the impossible if it was put to her properly. She leaned against Mara's belly, as if by touching more of Mara she could hear her brother better. Lucya snuggled up next to her and glanced up at Mara again, her face crinkling into a grin.

    Mara crooked an arm around Lucya and pulled her in closer. Since their encounter with the crystal snake, Lucya no longer squirmed away from her touch. She didn't treat Mara with the same carefully cultivated disdain; she even sought Mara's presence occasionally. The little girl's feelings had always been close to the surface, and Mara had no trouble sensing that Lucya's perceptions of her had gone through a sea change. The terrible red witch had all but disappeared from Lucya's thoughts, replaced by the image of a larger than life Mara battling a serpent of equally exaggerated proportions. Mara was amazed and amused at her sudden transformation from villain to hero, but she wasn't going to complain about the girl's fickle moods. This was more than a child's whim. It meant that somehow Lucya had broken free of the hatred her mother had imposed on her since birth.

    When the walls Callista had built around her daughter's mind and heart crumbled, more than her emotions were set free. Mara only had to look down at Lucya's water frame to see how much her talents had grown. In it hovered a shaggy quadruped with spiraling horns, the image shaky but unmistakable--the little lost bantha cub. One glance revealed the effort Lucya had put into the image. The fur showed a bit of the coarse texture of real bantha's wool; the saddle on its back was of a design that the Sand People favored. Mara was impressed at how quickly the little girl's proficiency at creating these images had progressed; it seemed to be an innate talent for Lucya, like Jacen's ability to handle animals or Jaina and Anakin's penchant for all things mechanical. Mara had the feeling that Lucya would grow up to be one of the Jedi who were able to form complex illusions. She wondered how long it would take Lucya to realize she didn't need the water frame to make pictures, and what kind of errant mirages she and Luke would have to deal with when that happened.

    Jaina was just finishing her story when the door to the suite slid open. Luke and the boys were framed in the doorway. Mara checked her chronometer. They hadn't been gone long enough to get in two full rounds of lightsaber practice, and none of them looked particularly exerted. "You're back early," she commented, frowning slightly.

    "Yeah. " Anakin slouched onto the sofa next to his sister. " And look what followed us home," he muttered under his breath.

    Lucya bounced up from her seat with a glad cry. "Mommy!" Ca
  3. Luke_and_Mara_4ever Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2000
    star 4
    Cool! It must be something neat, if it's from Karrde.


    Unless it's a trick Callista thought up.......
  4. Jedi_Liz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 24, 2000
    star 6
    wasn't Callista planning something? If there was something bad, don't you think an X-Ray machine would catch it? (Wouldn't the New Republic do that to make sure there wasn't a gun or an explosive device?)

    I'm worried.... :eek: :(

    twas a great post, madam Raissa
  5. Jeff 42 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 14, 1998
    star 5
    Great post. I'm glad to see Lucya changing.
  6. Luke_and_Mara_4ever Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2000
    star 4
    No one's posted for NINE DAYS?!?!??!?!?!?! The Shame!!
  7. Raissa Baiard Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 1999
    star 2
    Sorry for the delay. Ever work something into a story that you thought would solve a problem, only to find that it caused you even more trouble? That's how Karrde's gift has turned out for me, so unfortunately this is going to be a short post. More will come as I work out the difficulties with this plot element.

    Thanks for your patience,
    Raissa

    PS. Read Doran's Place while you're waiting ;)
    ******************************
    "Karrde? He didn't mention anything the last time you spoke to him." Luke peered over Mara's shoulder as she pried open the cubical packing crate. A shower of loose filler exploded from the box.

    "No, but that's hardly surprising. This is Talon Karrde, master of intrigue, we're dealing with," Mara answered, digging through the remaining ten-centimeter-deep layer of packing material. What she found underneath was nothing she would have expected. Nestled in the bits of shredded chak fiber lay was another box, this one wrapped in smooth, shiny blue paper and tied with a narrow white ribbon. Mara frowned as she lifted it out of the crate. Master of intrigue, indeed. Unexpected packages from the ends of the galaxy were Karrde's style, presents in fancy gift-wrap weren't-- he'd never been one to observe such social niceties.

    The conversation circle shrank to a ring of faces, all eager to see what Mara held. Luke and Jaina crowded in against her. Jacen leaned across the table, and Anakin, after unsuccesfully craning around his sister for a better view, scrambled off the couch and planted himself by Mara's feet.
    "Open it, Aunt Mara!" he urged.

    Jaina looked down at him and poked Anakin sharply with one foot. "Patience, young Jedi," she admonished, in her best, superior, older-sisterly voice. "Let her read the note first."

    Anakin flashed his sister an irritated glance, and Mara laughed, half at the siblings' impatience and half at her own. Her fingers agreed with Anakin; they longed to rip into the shiny wrapping paper. Whatever was inside exerted some strange influence; it called to Mara on an instinctive level. But that strange pull made her as anxious to find out why Karrde had sent the mysterious package as to discover what was in it. Mara let herself stroke the smooth paper one last time before she snapped open Karrde's letter.

    Mara, the note began. I'm afraid that the life of a civil servant has made me soft. I've acquired an object of immeasurable value, and rather than offering it to those who can appreciate--and afford-- its worth, I'm giving it away. As a baby gift, no less. However, it's the only thing I was sure would stand out among the sheer mass of presents that will deluge the child of two illustrious Jedi. It's something every young Jedi ought to have: his own holocron.

    Mara dropped the flimsy with a gasp; she tore through the wrapping paper, unable to restarin herself now that she knew why she felt such an attraction to what was inside. She barely heard the chorus of startled exclamations that rippled around the room. Freed of its trappings, the holocron glowed with a warm, rosy light. It was pleasantly cool to her touch and as Mara softly brushed her fingers over the glyphs carved into its polished surface, a pattern of glittering lights sparkled to life. They pulled Mara into their depths. She could sense which ones she would have to touch to awaken the holocron's gatekeeper. Mara looked up at the circle of awed faces that surrounded her. "It?s a gift for Pheylan," she explained.

    "Wow," Anakin breathed, leaning a little closer. "Where did Karrde find it?"

    With all eyes on her, Mara picked up Karrde's note and read aloud: "Before you ask, let me assure you that I did acquire the holocron legally. I paid a hundred credits for it, in fact-- further proof that I'm losing my edge. It was in the possession of a rather arrogantly stupid young Imperial, Captain Xan Belias, whose grandfather had been a Grand Moff. Belias was inordinately proud of the art collection he'd i
  8. J-Man Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2001
    Ahhh. I can breathe now. >Whew< I was losing it there for a minute. I was having Raissa Baiard withdrawal...

    Okay, when is the next hit, er, post??
  9. Luke_and_Mara_4ever Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2000
    star 4
    Cool! This is an excellent story, Raissa!
  10. Jedi_Liz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 24, 2000
    star 6
    good post! Bump! Is it too much to ask that you try to get another post in before July 15? I'm going on vacation that day and won't be back until the 27th (late-we're flying and we won't get back until really late that night.) I'll have limited Internet Access (possibly be able to check e-mail when we visit my Aunt that lives where we are going). So, if its not too much to ask..... :)

    Glad the package wasn't from someone evil.
  11. Jeff 42 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 14, 1998
    star 5
    Cool. Karrde's story was quite amusing.
  12. Raissa Baiard Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 1999
    star 2
    For Jedi Liz, because she asked so nicely... and persistently ;)

    The holocron sparkled merrily in Mara's lap as she finished reading Karrde's letter. She let her fingers trail over the delicately engraved surface, not quite touching the spots that would bring it to life. Luke leaned in closer to her and put his hand over hers. Their fingers twined together above the glittering symbols that played in the beneath the carvings. Mara sensed that Luke was drawn into depths of the shining cube along with her. The children sat mesmerized, too, watching the shifting patterns of the Force that shimmered through the palm-sized crystal.

    Their intentness was suddenly broken by the piercing voice of an agitated three-year-old. "Let me see!" Mara glanced up in time to see Lucya wriggle out of her mother's tight grasp, oblivious to the disapproving look that followed her. She squeezed in between Anakin and Jacen and was immediately under the holocron's spell. "Oooh," she whispered rapturously, eys going wide. "Pretty!" Lucya extended a finger to stroke the glimmering bauble.

    "Lucya Skywalker!" Callista's presence loomed over the group, shattering their charmed circle. "That is not a toy! Holocrons aren't meant for little children to play with." Her voice dripped disapproval, but not for her small daughter's curiosity. Callista's pointed glance plainly directed the criticism at Mara. Mara stopped herself from drumming her fingers against the holocron; she couldn't see what she'd done to raise the woman's ire this time. Did Callista blame her that Karrde had been so uncouth as to send a priceless treasure as a baby gift? Was she piqued that no one had sent her daughter a holocron? Or was it merely Mara's continued existence? Whatever the reason, Mara was growing heartily tired of being the cause of all that was wrong in Callista's skewed version of reality. "Really," Callista continued with a sniff, "I don't see why your friend thinks the child needs his own holocron. Can't he study from the Academy's collection? And surely Luke will want his children to inherit their father's holocron when the time comes."

    Jaina saved Mara from having to answer Callista's string of inane remarks. "We hardly have any holocrons any more," she explained, patiently as if talking to an incredibly dim-witted Gamorrean. "And no one knows how to make them anymore, either."

    Mara expected some sugar-coated caustic retort from Callista. She was surprised when instead Callista knit her brows in genuine surprise. " Really? No one knows how to make a holocron? No one?"

    "There hasn't been one built in the past fifty years," Jaina responded. She darted a can-you-believe-this look towards Mara. Had she been answering one of her brothers, Jaina's expression suggested, her answer would have been a more succinct: "Well, duh!" The dim-witted Gamorrean wouldn't have asked such a stupid question.

    Luke saw his niece's disdainful expression and arched a slightly reproving eyebrow at her. "Jaina's right," he said, cutting into the conversation before Callista noticed she was being mocked. "The art of making holocrons has all but disappeared. As for passing on my own holocron?." Luke trailled off with a sigh. "I would love to pass everything I've learned to my children, but unfortunately the knack of making them is another part of Jedi lore that's been lost to us. Neither Obi-Wan nor Yoda ever had the chance to teach me, and we can't afford to disassemble the few holocrons we have to find out how they were built."

    "I don't suppose you ever built one, Callista?" Anakin asked brightly. Luke expanded the look he'd given Jaina to include his youngest nephew as well. Anakin widened her eyes innocently at him. What?

    Luke needn't have worried; Callista was still staring off into the distance with a pensive expresion. "No, I?..no," she shook her head and brought herself back to the present. "Constructing a holocron was a privilege reserved for masters, and?I never had the chance to attain that rank." She frowned. "H
  13. Luke_and_Mara_4ever Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2000
    star 4
    Weird.... Wonder what made Callista go all strange like that? Sorry, Raissa, I know absolutely squat about Holocrons.
  14. J-Man Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2001
    Awesome. You're awesome.
    I wish I did know about holocrons.
    Using "wizard" was very clever.
  15. JWK Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 18, 2000
    star 4
    post some more soon please
  16. Luke_and_Mara_4ever Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2000
    star 4
  17. Raissa Baiard Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 1999
    star 2
    Sorry for the delay. This is going to be a short post because my wrist has been acting up again. Part of my job as a Jedi Librarian is being Web Master for the library's home page. They finally got me a decent HTML editor, and I went a little nuts playing with it. Great for the web page, not so great for my wrist. :(

    Anyway, hope it'll be back in shape soon so I can write more!
    *************

    Morning had fallen into a pattern for Callista in the months since she had moved into the Jedi Academy's guest quarters. She rose early to have enough time to make herself attractive for Luke before she had to corral Lucya, tug the perpetually active girl into her coveralls, and hustle her off to the cafeteria to join her father for breakfast. She'd grown accustomed to the routine and had its timing down to a fine science, but no matter how many weeks and months passed, Callista would never get used to the sight of Mara Jade across from her at the table, next to her Luke. That woman's presence was becoming steadily more intolerable to Callista, now that Lucya had decided she actually liked her. Callista choked down her blum fruit pastry while she listened to her daughter prattle happily to Mara about their plans for the day; the last sip of her vin caf tasted bitter when, rising to leave, Lucya took Mara Jade's hand as well as Luke's. She forced herself to smile prettily and kiss Lucya's forehead as they parted. That was part of their morning ritual, too, but today Callista deviated from her usual path. Instead of returning to her room in the guest quarters to prepare for her and Tionne's history lessons, she drifted through the dormitories where Luke's students who had attained full Jedi status lived.

    The Force had shown her what her next step had to be; the Jedi of this time had lost much of their heritage. The old masters' teachings had perished with them, but Callista had lived with and learned from those masters. She had the last of their knowledge.

    What she'd told that wretched, smug little Anakin Solo was true; she'd never built her own holocron. However, it was only half the truth. Her master, Djinn Altiss, had been constructing his holocron when he'd taken her on as his padawan. Ever the dutiful apprentice, Callista had done everything she could to help, preparing the components that would record his words, image and personality, attending to her master's comfort while he meditated and imbued each part with the Force. Callista remembered the process clearly. She alone among the Jedi could recreate it.

    But though she knew more about holocrons than anyone living, Callista was sure that if she revealed that knowledge to Tionne or another of the masters--even Luke--she wouldn't be allowed to put it into practice. Mara Jade had them all so thoroughly convinced that she'd been ensnared by the Dark Side that they would never permit her access to the parts she'd need. Even if Callista somehow persuaded them of the wisdom of letting her try, one or another of the masters would watch her like a hawk-bat every step of the way. Perhaps they'd want to copy her, but she had no intention of sharing her knowledge just yet. When Callista finally unveiled her creation and had been recognized for her stunning contribution to the Academy, then she would be willing to instruct the others in her craft.

    Callista had thought through the logistics of keeping her plan hidden and realized she was going to need an accomplice to make it work. Raksha, her own apprentice, had come immediately to mind. She knew she could trust the young Shistavenen to keep her secret, but as a mere student, Raksha had little access to the supplies Callista needed. Fortunately, there was another who would suit her purposes very well. Callista straightened her hair and put on her most appealing smile as she stopped in front of one of the tiny dorm rooms and tapped on the door.

    Gell Lajos answered and beamed when he saw her. "Callista! What a wonderful surprise!"
  18. J-Man Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2001
    Ooooh, evil temptress. Is redemption possible?
    Thanks for the post.
  19. Jeff 42 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 14, 1998
    star 5
    Great posts. I thought the use of "wizard" was very funny.
  20. Jedi_Liz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 24, 2000
    star 6
    does everyone realize this story is a year and a half old and its not finished yet? :(

    Please post more soon, Raissa!


    Uppers!
  21. RebelMom Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 20, 2000
    star 6
    keep em coming Raissa. I hope your wrist is better.
  22. Luke_and_Mara_4ever Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2000
    star 4
    Uh oh...... ::shivers:: I'm getting very very afraid of Callista....
  23. Raissa Baiard Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 1999
    star 2
    Ok, this is a pretty short post, but I just wanted to let you all know I hadn't forgotten this story. The good news is I should have more soon. The better news is that we're approaching the grand finale!

    Hope yoou enjoy,
    Raissa
    ***************
    The transparisteel cube was faintly luminescent in the Blueleaf Temple's shadows. Callista turned her holocron over in her hands, admiring the pale blue-gray sheen that mirrored the color of her eyes. She ran a fingertip over the letters she'd engraved on each face-- not Aurebesh, but a variant of an older script that she'd learned as a student in the Jedi Temple. No one could read the language but her; no one would realize the etchings weren't just pretty symbols. They spelled out her name, entwined with Luke's and Lucya's. Someday, when she'd taken care of Mara Jade and the Skywalker family was whole again, Callista would teach Luke and her daughter how to read the script and they would share the secret. Perhaps Luke would choose to engrave the same pattern onto his holocron as well.

    Callista was pleased with the progress she was making. She'd already acquired all assembling the various mechanisms to record and project her words and image. It had been a simple matter to convince Gell to help her. The young man was so painfully naïve that he believed Callista when she told him she wanted to keep her project a secret in case she failed. It helped, too, that dear Gell was besotted with her. He should have known he could never replace Luke in her heart, but his infatuation made her task all the easier. Gell promptly delivered whatever component she requested to Callista's quarters-- stolen, begged or borrowed from the Academy's workshop. Callista wondered at first what story Gell was telling Daiex Masina, the chief mechanic and a rather imposing woman, to get her to part with her little gizmos, but quickly decided she didn't care. She was getting what she needed and there was probably little risk of Gell betraying her secret. Daiex's talents ran more to diagnosing malfunctioning droids than discovering the motivations of actual humans.

    Putting together the equipment that made up the holocron's innards had been the easy part. It was imbuing them with the Force so that they not only recorded sound and image but also absorbed her personality that was the real challenge. Callista spent hours a day meditating in order to have the necessary strength in the Force-- getting up early, going to bed late so that no one could tell what she was doing. She spent as much time in her workshop in the Temple of the Blueleaf Cluster as she dared, touching the components, infusing them with the Force a little at a time. It was a tiring, demanding process, but the glow that emanated from the crystalline cube proved it was working.

    Callista reached for the tall bottle of chilled juri juice that sat next to her bench. Taking a long sip, she leaned back against the smooth stone wall and closed her eyes. Raksha was proving to be almost as dedicated a padawan as Callista herself had been. She never failed to have food and drink ready to replenish Callista when she finished with her work. She helped Callista plan lessons for her history classes so that she could maintain the fiction that she was hard at work when she was really meditating in the Blueleaf Temple. And through it all, Raksha's abilities were growing. She obsessively practiced toppling rock piles like the ones that littered the site of Skywalker House until she could change the direction they fell in a millisecond. Under Raksha's power, the stone columns danced and swayed like fronds of wanderkelp. Callista smiled to herself. Mara Jade would literally never know what had hit her. Now that Raksha had mastered her new skill, all they needed to do was wait for the opportunity to employ it to present itself.

    A restless current running through the Force told Callista it would be soon.
  24. Luke_and_Mara_4ever Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2000
    star 4
    ::hears Jaws theme playing in backround:: Uh oh.... I have a very bad feeling about this!!
  25. Lolipon Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 1999
    star 3
    Up! Can't wait for more.

    Callista is evil. :mad:
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.