'Coming Home' a young Jinn story, featuring Yoda, Qui-Gon and Dooku. Angst and Action.

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction Stories--Classic JC Board (Reply-Only)' started by Marnie, Nov 29, 2002.

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  1. Marnie Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 25, 2001
    star 1
    Coming Home.
    ************

    Recycled air met Yan Dooku as he strode through the doors, stripping
    away the faint ketone sweetness of Coruscant's evening breeze. At first
    the change was noticeable only to his subconscious, but gradually - as
    his path led him through cool marble arches and vaults of empty light -
    he began to feel as if he was breathing in sterility, strong enough to
    choke.

    Anodyne. Flavourless.

    After five years in the field he had expected this to be something of a
    homecoming - that all the chaotic confusion of the many cultures he had
    visited, the petty passions of their leaders and the grinding similarity
    of their poor, would make him glad, if only for a little while, to be
    back in the calm. Instead he felt more like an addict snorting his next
    shot - relieved to have made it this far, but resenting the need.

    There was no-one to meet him. He didn't expect there to be, but still,
    it was a chill welcome. They no more want me back than I want to be
    here.


    That too was a cold thought, closing over him with familiar pain.
    Five years of danger and toil. Every mission a success. And I have
    still not achieved acceptance.
    He was honestly beginning to wonder
    why he bothered.

    ***

    Yoda rubbed his knee - it had begun to ache in the dry cool of the
    Council Chamber. Many things had begun to pain him this year, his
    students not least. He looked at his padawan, standing in the centre of
    the chamber, as rigid and cold as a pillar of ebony, and could not
    suppress a sigh of regret. "Unorthodox your actions were, Knight
    Dooku. Condemn them we do not...yet. Only attempt to understand we
    do."

    "Jedi Knights may kill, if necessary. But we do not torture." Master
    Dikean's tone of voice summed up all the revulsion of the Councillors as
    he called up the exact data on his padd. "This warlord, Malmer C, you
    flayed the skin off him and chained him up to be eaten to death by
    insects - over a period of weeks."

    "And you're accusing me of enjoying it?" Dooku had let his hair grow in
    the five years since his knighting, it brushed his shoulders now, heavy
    and glossy as a fall of tar. Though Yoda knew it was foolish, he could
    not help wondering if the sable locks represented an outward sign of
    some growing inward darkness.

    Understand him, we do not, but understand us he does, all too
    well.
    Yoda had hoped that experience in the real world might have
    mellowed his wayward padawan, might have brought him further into the
    fold. It didn't seem to have happened.

    "I find it worryingly excessive." Dikean said, lekku quivering, "When a
    clean death would have solved the problem just as well."

    "A clean death would not have served." Dooku's aristocratic
    voice was as polished and hard as diamonds, and his deep eyes seemed
    almost black with indignation. "Malmer C was guilty of genocide,
    torture, rape, disappearances... a campaign of such terror that if his
    death had not served as an outlet for the people's rage there would have
    been riots of such ferocity that thousands of innocents would have been
    killed. What I did, I did to prevent that. Every man, woman and child
    on the planet understood that justice had been done. And I knew, when I
    was doing it, that I acted to save life. Not out of vengeance or
    hatred. Certainly not out of enjoyment. Out of necessity."

    Yoda sagged with relief and some pride. Eloquent, he is.
    Indeed, the young knight's voice had a power that promised to make him
    one of the Jedi's greatest negotiators. Now that his apparent taint had
    been explained away Yoda felt content to work on drawing him in, making
    him feel more included in the Order. Anchoring him, so that he did not
    drift away because of his strangeness.

    "Correct you are, Knight Dooku - not always pleasant are the deeds the
    Force asks of us." He thought of his current padawan, Qui-Gon, another
    quiet, unorthodox boy whom he was going to hurt badly in the near
    future. "But do them we must if we are to achieve anythin
  2. Healer_Leona Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2000
    star 9
    Oohh, posting Coming Home here already... YAY!!!

    Does Dooku really wonder at at his not being accepted after what he did to Malmer C. I have to side with the Council on this one. I cannot justify the lightside of the Force requiring actions of torture and pain to be dealt by the Jedi. In this case I would expect Dooku to have handed the man over to what government he was acting for, as Jedi do not do things of their own accord and let them deal their own punishment. Can't help but find his explanation of why he did what he did disturbing and suspect.

    Hmmm, I just realized when reading this the first time I thought the whole Coulcil scene was a look at the past of what and why made Dooku not feel accepted, but the scene was on return to the temple. The man is creepy.

    Stunning beginning Marnie. Think I will now stick to reading and replying to it here.

    Post soon, post often!!

  3. Darth_Fruitcake Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 18, 2001
    star 4
    I must say, you've intrigued me. Keep up the good work. :)
  4. Marnie Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 25, 2001
    star 1
    Thanks, Leona! I'm glad you still think Dooku's a bit suspect. He is creepy isn't he - you can never tell whether he's lying or not :) But hey - there wasn't a government at the time and he had to do what he thought was best. The fact that he thought it was best to torture the guy for a couple of weeks just tells you something about him and his somewhat forthright methods ;)

    I think the Council might be worried, but decide that it was a reasonable explanation, but they might keep an eye on him in future.

    Thanks Darth Fruitcake. I hope I can keep you intregued in future :)
  5. Sabe126 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 18, 2002
    star 4
    Good to see that you started to post this! I agree, it is very intriguing! The Council certainly need to keep an eye on Dooku. What is going to upset Dooku and Qui-Gon? Is Yoda going to give up Qui-Gon as his apprentice?

    Looking forward to the next instalment!


    Sabe126
  6. Jedi_Suzuran Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 22, 2002
    star 5
    Yay! You posted it here. :D

    Excellent beginning, Marnie. :)
  7. Sabe126 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 18, 2002
    star 4
  8. Just_Jill Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 17, 2002
    star 3
    Very interesting story. Good beginning. Hope you keep it up.

    Just Jill
  9. Sabe126 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 18, 2002
    star 4
  10. Marnie Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 25, 2001
    star 1
    Thanks for the ups, Sabe! Intreguing sig you've got there, when I get some free time I must check that out (life's been a bit hectic around here lately.)

    Thanks, Jedi Suzuran! I'm so glad you're with me again :)

    Hello Just_Jill. Lovely to see a new face!

    Right, here we go with part 2. A bit longer this time, and watch out for the rude word :)

    Coming Home, part 2
    **************

    "Hold!"

    Qui-Gon froze in place and concentrated on the trickle of sweat between
    his shoulderblades, so that he did not have to see the looks of disgust
    on the faces of
    every other Phoenix Clan child.

    "Jinn? Would you like to explain exactly what you think you're doing?"

    He didn't know why he had this kind of affect on Master Septima, who had
    infinite patience with everyone else, but recently she only had to look
    at him for her
    long, bewhiskered face to spot with irritation.

    Beside him Ki-Adi-Mundi stooped his elongated head to whisper "Chuuba,
    Jinn, not again. Apologize and shut up this time. For our sake, OK?"

    But he couldn't do that, not even for Ki. He'd worked every night since
    his birthday on this, thinking of variations, running computer
    simulations to test them. He
    knew his change to the kata met every combination of attacks the
    somersault was designed to counter, and more. Now he had only to
    explain the new moves
    to the Sensei. "You said I was too slow coming through the somersault,
    Master, so I..."

    "You decided you would just drop it." The Dug Master's voice drooled
    contempt as only her species could and her fan-like ears flattened
    against her head to
    protect her from hearing any more of this.

    Not *just* drop it! Qui-Gon thought, with a sick, sinking
    recognition. She wasn't going to let him speak, was she? "I worked out
    a variation that..."

    "This kata was designed by the great Ng-Chi Kit, grand-Master of the
    Hawkbat style. What gives you the right to meddle with it, just because
    you're too lazy
    to practice it correctly?"

    Behind him someone sniggered, and the periphery of his vision was full
    of the smiles of children who know that whatever they do now, it won't
    be quite as bad
    as this. He tried not to feel exposed, outnumbered, angry, but it
    wasn't fair! Septima knew how many hours he'd put in trying to do the
    kata as it was
    designed. She knew his slowness was just because a body his size
    couldn't move faster - not without an application of the Force that
    seemed
    excessive. Aren't we supposed to avoid using the Force frivolously?
    Or is that just when *they*decide?


    "I don't see why the somersault's necessary. If I understood, I'd do it
    if it killed me. But I figured out that..."

    Septima shook her head, like a kaadu tormented by flies. "This isn't
    about the kata at all, is it? This is about you, Jinn, and your desire
    to be the centre of
    attention. Don't think you can get away with that in my class just
    because you happen to be Councillor Yoda's Padawan."

    Always, Qui-Gon thought, racked painfully between misery and illicit
    fury, it always came back to that. But why? Since when had he ever
    used his
    status for anything? "This is nothing to do with Yoda!" he shouted,
    conscious that his near neighbours had taken a step away from him. "And
    I'm not
    showing off. I can't do it your way, so I worked out a way I could do
    it. What's so wrong with that? I just want to understand. If you're
    my teacher
    why can't you teach me?"

    *****

    The Clan found excuses to follow him around the North Wing and watch him
    as he cleaned the toilets, his braid tucked under his collar to keep it
    out of the
    lavatory bowls.

    He could hardly blame them. It must be a novel sight - a sentient being
    reduced to the humiliation of droid-work. And he deserved it. He knew
    that. He
    should never have lost his temper and shouted, shaming himself, shaming
    his Master. I still can't get anything right, can I? My way or
    theirs, I'm still
    rubbish.


    "I did tell you." Ki said, without symp
  11. cristalvandepol Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 30, 2002
    star 5
    Wow this is really good. I'm guessing that someone will help the young Qui-Gon soon. More soon :)
  12. Jedi_Suzuran Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 22, 2002
    star 5
    This post still makes me sad and happy at the same time. :) Sad because Qui doesn't fit in with the expected rules of the Temple, and is paying the price for it. Happy because he is so different. :)

    Weird reaction, but I love it. :D
  13. Sabe126 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 18, 2002
    star 4
    Marnie, if you do find time to drop by you will be most welcome.

    I can just see the young Qui-Gon and young Ki-Adi-Mundi.

    Poor Qui-Gon, he has to tell someone about Septima's bullying. What is her problem anyway? Is she jealous? I can't believe that it is all Qui-Gon's fault. Why should he have to be something he isn't? How heartbreaking for him to have to leave Yoda. I hope that someone arrives to stop him doing anything foolish.


    Sabe126
  14. dianethx Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 2002
    star 6
    This is such a good fic. All of yours are but this one seems particularly poignant. Poor kid, rejected by his friends, harassed by his enemies and gutted by the one that should have been the most supportive - it's a wonder he ever grew up, never mind that he had the strength of character to take on padawans.

    Great job as always, Marnie.
  15. Marnie Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 25, 2001
    star 1
    Hello Crystal! A new reader, hurray :) Nah, I'm too cruel to have anyone turn up to comfort the poor lad, though I might have someone come along and shout 'jump'! ;)

    Jedi Suzeran - your wierd reaction is just what I'm after - thanks!

    Thanks Sabe! I'm glad you're getting emotionally involved ;) But really Septima's just being a teacher - she can't allow one boy who won't do the exercise properly to take over the whole class with his strange ideas. I have a lot of sympathy for her, but unfortunately Qui-Gon's a somewhat highly strung 13 year old and can't be quite as understanding as I can ;)

    Diane! How nice to see you here, and it's superoregatory of you to comment as well :) A wonder that he ever grew up? Ah, didn't I mention this was AU...
    <joke, honestly!> :D
  16. Sabe126 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 18, 2002
    star 4
    I still think Septima is mean! :)


    Sabe126
  17. Healer_Leona Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2000
    star 9
    It's so evident in this post how much the Temple is trying to raise little droid Jedi that fllow only what's been taught before them. Ok, they need to learn the basics, but to punish individual thought or anyone with a bit of imagination. Is it any wonder the Order was destroyed in the stagnant way they clung too. No growth, no future.

    You don't ever stop asking stupid questions,...-- so very sad, to believe that any question is ever stupid.

    How incredibly tragic that the Order, the Guardians of Peace and Justice could reduce one of their own, a boy to suicide.

    Impeccably wirtten Marnie!

  18. Jedi_Suzuran Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 22, 2002
    star 5
  19. Just_Jill Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 17, 2002
    star 3
    Excellent. Very well written. Great job!

    Just Jill
  20. Sabe126 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 18, 2002
    star 4
  21. jacen200015 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 11, 2002
    star 4
  22. Sabe126 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 18, 2002
    star 4
  23. Marnie Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 25, 2001
    star 1
    Sorry, everybody! Darth real life struck. (Or actually Darth-other-fandom ;) Thanks for hanging in there! here's part 3.

    Coming Home, Part 3

    ****

    Traffic was heavy. He had a long time to wait. Time enough for it to
    dawn on him that it was almost pleasant out here. The cold was smooth
    as ointment, and the night was huge and silent around him. If he looked
    up instead of down he could see clouds scudding on the untamed breeze.
    Smog was scarcely thicker than a spring mist, driven as the clouds,
    parting to give a glimpse of the star-spattered opal which was
    Coruscant's sky. Above Qui-Gon's head wheeled the very heart of the
    Galaxy, alight with glory.

    *It's so beautiful.*

    He hung in the moment, quiet before the grandeur of the night, and his
    own concerns slipped away from him into the cool air. In the immensity,
    the Force was all around him, still and glad. It didn't prevent him
    from suicide, nor did it encourage him, it only waited to see what he
    would do. And somehow - knowing that it watched - Qui-Gon found he no
    longer had any desire to jump into the darkness.

    Stepping back onto the balcony, his legs trembled and he collapsed onto
    his knees. Groping in his inner tunic pocket he brought out the pebble
    he had found on his homeworld. It lit him with soft radience, and
    warmed his shaking hands. A focus, a proof that something existed
    beyond his emptiness. "I'm sorry. I'm sorry..." he chanted, shaking,
    trying to pull himself back together after he had abandoned all desires
    but death. *I promised to obey the Force, and I never even bothered
    asking what it wanted.*

    When he had enough control over himself, he straightened his back -
    making his meditation posture as formal and perfect as if he was in
    class - and closed his eyes. The wind sifted through his clothes,
    pulled at his cloak and sent his braid streaming. Light and warmth
    soothed his face from the river-stone, and the night pressed in at his
    back as he opened up all the alienation and gave it to the Force.

    "What am I supposed to do?"

    There was no answer, only the encirclement of a silent presence whose
    touch deepened his ragged breath and filled him with relief. He waited
    a long time, slowly growing consious of the rough graze of stone under
    his knees, cramp in his foot, dew settling frigid on his face, and
    sighed at last, defeated. "I guess I have to figure it out myself."

    The Force had not rejected him - that was enough for him to continue to
    live. But he was still masterless, unwanted, a shame to his teacher and
    an embarrassment to his friends. He damaged both his Order and himself
    by staying here...

    In the bleak reality of those facts, the answer was obvious, but
    strange. More frightening than suicide. *I have to leave the Jedi.*

    He struggled to his feet and stood looking at the millions of stars.
    Only a moment ago this immensity had been comforting. Now he felt
    bewildered and very small before it. *I don't want to be alone.*

    But he could not deny that he was already alone. In the teeming
    millions of Coruscant, in the thousands of calm, accomplished knights,
    he was isolate, unreachable. *Maybe it won't hurt so much if I'm not
    surrounded by people to disappoint.*

    Dread coiled like a tapeworm deep inside. As he returned to his
    quarters he noticed how much about the Temple was dear to him, how much
    he would miss. *But I will do what the Force wills, and leave. It's
    the only way.*

    ******

    Dooku folded his cloak into a thin cushion beneath him before sitting
    down on the floor. He stretched his legs out under the low table,
    leaned his head against the wall and closed his eyes. Now here was the
    sensation of homecoming he had missed before. *It even smells the
    same.* Touching the wall, his hand displaced the condensation and small
    droplets pooled around his fingers - he could already feel the moisture
    soaking through his hair.

    *Incredible. I grew up in these rooms, in a climate designed for a
    different species.*

    Already the pleasant rush of
  24. Jedi_Suzuran Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 22, 2002
    star 5
    Ha! Yoda gets a little frustration. :D

    Poor Qui-Gon. :(

    Too bad Darth RL struck. :_| He needs to die many times.

    Great post. :D
  25. Just_Jill Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 17, 2002
    star 3
    hehe. This is going to be interesting.

    And I agree with Jedi_Suzuran. DRL must DIE. A long and horrid death.

    Sigh...

    Other fandoms count.

    Just Jill
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