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Saga - OT [DDC 2018] (Not) The Ballad of Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus | (OCs)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Raissa Baiard, Jul 9, 2018.

  1. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Title: (Not) The Ballad of Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus (and Noemi Bridger)
    Author: Raissa Baiard
    Timeframe: Saga, approx 24 ABY
    Genre: Humor, mush, angst
    Canonicity: AU, in the Marzra-verse continuity
    Characters: Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus (OC). Noemi Bridger (OC), Mentions of Kanan Jarrus, Hera Syndulla, Ezra Bridger, Ben Solo, and various OCs
    Synopsis: The journals of Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus, the teenage son of Kanan Jarrus and Hera Syndulla, and Noemi Bridger, daughter of Ezra and Mara Bridger.

    Notes: This story is written for the 2018 Dear Diary Challenge Half Marathon. The first two entries were previous posted as "Freaking Out: From the Journal of Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus" and serve as a kind of prologue and introduction to the characters

    The Story So Far, or Wait, Why Is Kanan Still Alive?

    The short answer is that the Marzra-verse was created halfway through Rebels Season 3 and I’ve never ret-conned it to be compliant. :D So, for all intents and purposes, the events of Season 4 never occurred in this universe. Instead, the Spectres went to Yavin after the destruction of Chopper Base and stayed there to join in the larger fight. During this time, one of their missions brought them to the planet Merkesh to work with a Rebel cell called the Idiot’s Array. Ezra met and fell in love with his contact, Mara Jade Blayne (an AU Mara who had never been taken away from her family). Shortly after the Battle of Yavin, Mara formally joined the Alliance and went to Yavin, where she, Ezra and Kanan began training Luke Skywalker as a Jedi.

    Several months later, Hera discovered she was pregnant; Kanan proposed and the two were married just before the evacuation of Yavin.

    After the Battle of Endor, Mara and Ezra were married. They, along with Mara’s family and Kanan, Hera and their son Jacen, moved to Lothal to help restore the planet and establish a new Jedi Academy near the Jedi temple.

    Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus: Kanan and Hera’s youngest child, age 17
    Appearance: has unruly brown hair and short, blunt lekku, patterned with light orange stripes, green eyes

    Personality: As a child, Ronen was naturally inquisitive and exuberant, though over the years, that enthusiasm has been tempered by his self-consciousness over his mixed heritage and his self-doubt. Has a sense of humor though it runs to snark by his teens. Perceptive and intelligent, but he doesn’t see it in himself. Due to his experience as an outsider, he will take the side of the underdog or the outcast every time.

    Noemi Bridger: Ezra and Mara’s daughter, age 16
    Appearance: auburn hair, blue green eyes

    Personality: Intelligent, capable and fiercely loyal to those she cares about. A good student, well liked at school, but generally unconcerned with popularity or cliques. Inherited the beast-warden talent from Ezra, bonded with a Loth-cat named Spots.

    Ayelet Syndulla-Jarrus: Kanan and Hera’s daughter, age 19
    Appearance: Green skin, slightly lighter than Hera’s. Her lekku are similarly patterned but shorter than a baseline Twi’lek’s.

    Personality: Ayelet is creative and empathetic. She combines Hera’s nurturing side with Kanan’s meditative side. Very in tune with the living Force in nature (hears the Force whispering in the breeze). Would rather mediate to find a peaceful solution than use her lightsaber. Keeps in touch with her Aunt Sabine for artistic advice.

    Jacen Syndulla-Jarrus: Kanan and Hera’s oldest son, age 24
    Appearance: emerald green hair worn in a queue, green eyes, has a smattering of pale green spots across his nose and cheeks.

    Personality: “Born to fly, just like his mother”, he’s a gifted pilot and navigator and will soup up anything mechanical. He has Hera’s decisive leadership abilities, and is confident and courageous.

    Caleb Bridger: Ezra and Mara’s son, age 18.
    Appearance; blue-black hair, blue eyes

    Personality: humorous and easygoing—but has Mara’s temper if pushed too far. Feels more at home switching between the Jedi Academy and NLUPS than Ronen does. Caleb is the star grav-ball kicker for the NLUPS Loth-wolves as well as an exceptional lightsaber duelist. Plays quetarra for fun


    At Northern Lothal Unified Preparatory School

    Mistress Eupraxia: Composition and Galactic Literature teacher at NLUPS.Svivreni

    Master Feipel: Modern Galactic Civilization teacher. Human.

    Master Farn: Chemistry teacher. Bith

    Maatko Fridlos: Rodian math geek, captain of the dejarik team. Pale green, very thin. One of Ronen’s few friends at NLUPS.

    Zofi Sirar: An attractive Twi’lek in Ronen’s class.

    At the Jedi Academy

    Doran Blayne: Mara’s father. Escaped Order 66 as a padawan and sold his lightsaber crystals to buy a new identity. Formerly a cantina owner/Rebel cell leader, he now serves as joint headmaster of the Jedi Academy with Kanan.

    Raissa (Baiard) Blayne: Mara’s mother. A former Imperial prefect. Discovered she was Force-sensitive in her 20’s and chose to train as a Jedi with Doran while she used her position to work within the system. Now battlemaster at the Jedi Academy.

    Diary Journal of Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus
    Primeday, 04/07 3301 LY


    So...this is my journal. It’s an assignment, obviously. Mistress Eupraxia says it’s supposed to help us become “aware of ourselves and our feelings,” whatever that means. What is it with adults and feelings anyway? My teachers at NLUPS (that’s Northern Lothal Unified Prep School—Noemi says it sounds like a nerf slurping on a salt block :p) want me to “get in touch with my feelings”. My Jedi instructors tell me to “search my feelings”. Can I be less aware of my feelings, please?

    I feel fine, thanks for asking.

    So, yeah, about me… okay. My name is Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus. My mom is a general. My dad’s a Jedi Master. No pressure there, right? Me… I’m just kind of the family freak. Because Mom’s a Twi’lek and Dad’s a Human, and I lost the genetic crapshoot between the two species.

    My older brother, Jacen, looks Human except that he has green hair and these pale green spots on his face. Girls think he looks exotic. My sister, Ayelet, looks just like Mom, except her lekku are a little shorter, so guys think she’s gorgeous. I’m the youngest and I have this mop of brown hair that won’t do anything and these weird short, striped lekku that don’t do much except twitch a little when I’m annoyed or angry. I’d pull my hair back like Dad and Jacen do, but it doesn’t work so well with the lekku in the way. I’ve thought about shaving it off, but my head has kind of a weird shape…. Anyway, all of this means that no girl will give me the time of day.

    Well, except Noemi, and she doesn’t count, because she’s like my best friend and also my… niece? Cousin? Something? I don’t know; relationships are a little weird in my family. I guess technically Uncle Ezra isn’t related to me and so neither is Noemi, but we might as well be. We’re only year apart, but we’re in a lot of the same classes—only she’s good at everything, and I’m pretty much just the class freak.

    If I was going to get stuck with having both lekku and hair, why couldn’t my hair look like Ben Solo’s? Why do all the girls like him, anyway? It’s got to be the hair, right? The brooding? (I’m brooding! I’m angsty! Why doesn’t anyone like me?) Seriously, I’d vote him Most Likely to Join the Dark Side, except Dad and Master Blayne don’t allow that kind of stuff… When I told Noemi that, she just gave me the Look. I think she’s got a thing for him, too. (Really, Noemi? I thought you were smarter than that.)

    Mistress Eupraxia told us to pick a word that we think best describes us. I don’t know… maybe “half-and-half”? Since I’m half Twi’lek and half human? And I spend half my time at NLUPS and half at the Jedi Academy, because Dad and Master Blayne think the Jedi shouldn’t isolate themselves? Or does that count as three words? Whatever...it’s better than “freak”, which is what I really feel like most of the time. Noemi says to stop calling myself that, but how else am I supposed to describe myself when I look the way I do? When I don’t fit in anywhere? When I’m the weird Jedi kid in NLUPS, and not just that but the kid whose parents get talked about in history class? I guess that part’s true of Noemi and Caleb, too, but they handle it better than I do. I think it’s easy for Noemi, because she’s smart and beautiful (wait, can I say that about a girl I’m practically related to? See, I told you I was weird.)

    Anyway— this is me in a yubnut shell, Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus. Half human, half Twi’lek. Prep school student. Jedi padawan. Freak.

    Noemi’s Journal (All others stay out)
    04/07 3301


    Mistress Eupraxia assigned us to write a journal for three months—and I have no idea what I’m supposed to say in this thing. I’m so not the type of girl who keeps a diary. Dear diary—today I wore my fuchsia sequin glitterskirt to school and the cute boy who sits behind me in lab looked at me! Tee hee hee.. Ugh, no thanks! I will write the daily weather forecast for the Northern Plains before I will lower myself to writing that kind of poodoo. It was another beautiful sunny day with sixty percent humidity and light variable winds from the southwest….

    All right, since I have to, I guess I should tell you something about myself. My name is Noemi Jade Bridger, and before you ask, yes that Bridger. My dad is Ezra Bridger, the most famous person to come from Lothal in like...ever. I mean, I get why he’s the homeworld hero—he basically went from being a street kid to a commander in the Rebellion and then came back to help found the new Jedi Academy here—but to me, he’s just Dad, you know?

    Mistress Eupraxia told us to pick one word that best describes us (which is pretty limiting, really. Shouldn’t we be more than just one thing?) and I guess I’d have to say “invisible”, because all anyone sees when they look at me is the Hero of Lothal’s daughter. I feel like I have to be perfect at everything and still no one sees me. I wish someone would notice me for something besides my last name. (I wish Ben Solo would notice me for anything...oh good skies, did I just write that? No one’s reading this, right?)

    Anyway, there are really only two beings who understand me...and one of them is a Loth-cat, Spots. (Yes, I know it’s a lame name, but I didn’t give it to her, it’s what she calls herself. She’s very proud of her spots). Ever since I can remember, Loth-cats have liked me—I get that from Dad—but Spots and I just connect. Most people think she’s my pet, but she’s a lot more than that. It’s almost like...like she’s Force-sensitive or something, the way we can understand each other. But I don’t tell many people that or they’d think I’m crazy.

    The only one I can talk to about stuff like that is Ronen… he gets it. He’s a Jedi, too, and his parents are just about as famous as Dad. He’s my best friend—has been since we were little. We’re both the youngest in our families, so we always got stuck together. I don’t mind, though, he’s funny and smart, even if he is really hard on himself. He’s kind of hung up on the fact that he has hair and lekku, when most half-Twi’leks only have one or the other. I’ve tried to tell him that A) he doesn’t look bad, I mean, have you seen some of the strange species out there? and B) so what if the girls at NLUPS don’t pay attention to him, most of them aren’t worth it anyway. But he doesn’t listen to me. :(

    Oh hey, I managed to get more than 500 words written! Go me! I guess this means I’m done...at least until tomorrow. Sigh...stupid journal…
     
  2. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Thanks to @Findswoman for beta-reading and helping me keep my angsty teen Jedi on track @};-

    Journal of Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus, the Galaxy’s lamest padawan
    Centaxday, 15/07 3301


    Okay, so I have literally nothing to put in this journal.

    When my parents were my age, Dad was on the run, hiding after Order 66. Mom was learning to be a pilot so she could fight the Empire. Me? I go to school. Yeah, really fascinating, I know. No one wants to read about my life. *I* don’t even want to read about my life. But if you really want to hear about a day in the life of the Galaxy’s lamest padawan, here goes…

    I overslept. Again. Which meant I was awakened by the melodious sound of Chopper’s emergency alert: BWOP BWOP BWOP! Turned up to eleven. In my ear. Thanks, Chop—I love you, too. Chopper—his real designation is C1-10P—is Mom’s astromech droid from way back during the Clone Wars. He’s like part of the family in a way, though...that annoying relative that always knows What’s Best for You, part nanny, part drill sergeant. Jacen tells me Chopper goes easy on me because I’m the baby. I can’t even imagine what he must have been like when Jacen was a little kid.

    I had just enough time to throw on my clothes and bolt down some caf and a ration bar. Dad and Ayelet were already at the Academy, which just left Mom to frown over my lack of a Proper Breakfast and how much caf I was drinking. (Okay, but if she wants me to stay awake for ModGalCiv, I need my caf. It’s either that or FizzyGlug TurboCharge, and she says that has too much sugar.)

    Dashed out the door and hopped on my jump speeder; the engine’s been making this weird noise like it’s going “topato topato topato” and today it started belching thick black smoke that smelled like the time Uncle Zeb made the caf for Life Day brunch. The bike used to be Jacen’s, and he’s got it modded four ways from Benduday. I, however, am doing good to get mechanical stuff to run under normal circumstances, so when one of his special mods comes loose, I have no idea how to fix it. He won’t be back from Capital City until Primeday, so unless I can get Mom to look at tonight, I’ll have to put up with it until then.

    Got to NLUPS just in time for the first bell. Centaxday is Chemistry, Comp and Lit, and ModGalCiv—Modern Galactic Civilization, my least favorite class. I know what you’re thinking—“But Ronen, ModGalCiv is practically the story of your family!” Yeah, exactly. Do you want to go to class everyday and have them talk about the awesome things your whole family did during the war, while everyone looks at you and thinks, “what happened to you then, freak?” So I sit as far in the back as possible and hope no one asks any questions about the Jedi Council or the Free Ryloth Movement or the Battle of Endor, because Master Feipel will ask what I think. He hasn’t figured out that A.) this is not what my family talks about at dinner time and B.) when the teacher asks you for answers, it makes you look like a boot-licking know-it-all.

    Chemistry is a little better, except that chemistry means labs and labs means lab partners—and that’s a problem when you’re the least popular guy in class. Usually, I can manage to get Noemi or Maatko (Maatko Fridlos, captain of the dejarik team, certified genius and second most unpopular guy in class. Also my best friend besides Noemi, because us losers have to stick together). But Master Farn likes to “shake things up” by using a random number generator to assign us partners—oh those wacky Bith!—and today the random fate generator paired me up with Zofi Sirar. Zofi is a Twi’lek and she is...how can I put this…hot. (Yeah, Noemi, I know you hate that word...but she is.) She has these incredible long blue lekku, and she wears these clingy tunics and has like perfect skin and a perfect smile and perfect makeup and just generally looks perfect all the time. Normally, she would not—and does not—give me a second glance. And I’m okay with that, but today I figured as long as we were working together, it couldn’t hurt to make some conversation, right? My clever opening gambit? “So, hey, Zofi, how are you?”

    Yeah, I could tell I had her interested when she answered with a noise that sounded like “meh.” I continued the witty banter: “It’s, uh, a nice day out there.”

    I didn’t think it was possible for anyone to roll their eyes as far as she did. “Ronen,” she said, clicking her tongue and signing something extremely rude with her lekku (hey, I may not be able to speak lekku, but I can still understand it!). “Just do the experiment.”

    “Yeah, okay.” So since conversation was not going to happen, I measured out the 12 grams of sulfur we needed…

    It was supposed to be 2 grams.

    Instead of producing a “mildly unpleasant odor” when it ignited like Master Farn said, it was an incredibly, horribly and unbelievably foul odor. The whole class was coughing, I started gagging, trying not to throw up on Zofi and my lekku were twitching like a couple of spastic flobber worms. We had to evacuate the classroom because, hey, sulfur vapors are caustic! Fun!

    I figure whatever infinitesimal chance I had with Zofi is dead now.

    The upside is that we got to go to lunch early. The downside is because I was running late, I left my lunch at home. The upside to that is I didn’t feel like eating anyway, because the smell of burning sulfur was permanently lodged in my nostrils. (And my hair. My jacket. My shirt. You get the idea.)

    After lunch was Composition and Galactic Literature with Mistress Eupraxia; we are studying the sonnets of the Rodian poet and playwright W’lem Jakspeeir. His love sonnets, to be specific...yes, seriously. A bunch of teens, most of whom think that Shaya Stari’s “Ma Swets Patogga” is a great love song (it’s not—she rhymes “patogga” with “dianoga”, and that’s just wrong) and she’s making us read love sonnets that are like a thousand years old. And even better, Mistress Eupraxia insists that to truly appreciate them, they must be read aloud. Guess who she picked today? If you said me—ding ding! You win the prize! Everyone was watching me, while I was trying not to look at any of them, especially not the girls, especially not Zofi, not after what happened in Chemistry. And I could just feel my lekku getting warm the whole time I was reciting: “‘Shall I compare thee to a thinnekk tree? Thou art greener and more nubby yet! Bark-gnawers mar the greenest tree, and in the swamp it turns to rot!’”

    Wanna know the worst part? Mistress Eupraxia applauded when I was done. Really. She told me I’d done an excellent job capturing the spirit of Jakspeeir’s words and she hoped I would try out for drama club. Yeah, because everyone wants to watch the school freak on stage. No thanks. I’ll pass.

    And that was just half my day...after school I had just enough time to take a sonic and get the smell of sulfur off, raid the conservator for leftovers, and get some homework done before I had more classes, this time at the Jedi Academy. You’d think that it would be easier for me there, wouldn’t you? I mean, half the teachers are related to me and the others have known me since I was born. But sometimes it almost feels harder there than it does at NLUPS. There’s just something a little weird about your teachers being family; like my dad is the one teaching the philosophy of the Force, shouldn’t I understand this stuff better than I do? And...I still don’t feel like I fit in anywhere. I may not be the freak here, but there’s nothing special about me. Jacen’s a mechanical genius and an ace pilot, Ayelet’s an artist, Caleb’s like crazy good with a lightsaber, and Noemi’s got the whole beast-warden thing going on. Me, I’m just there, just blah… pretty disappointing when you’re the headmaster’s son. Definitely disappointing when there are guys like Ben Solo around.

    Okay, I’m a Jedi, so I don’t hate Ben, but he annoys the snot out of me. It’s like he has to be the most Jedi Jedi ever, if you know what I mean. Like we don’t have to wear our robes unless we’re representing the Academy or the Temple (Master Blayne says he seriously doubts the Force cares what we’re wearing), but Ben is always in robes, probably even sleeps in them. And he can’t just wear them because he wants to, he has to look sideways at everyone else for wearing regular clothes instead. He would have to be part of my meditation group and my saber cohort and in my philosophy class—and that’s the worst part, because he always has an answer and he’s always so right. Like today...he was trying to convince Dad that our new Order shouldn’t accept adult trainees and should discourage attachment like the Old Order did. “Master Simikarty’s writings in the Teyan Apologia were accepted doctrine for thousands of years,” he argued. “Is it really wise of us to abandon them now?”

    The old non-attachment doctrine is one of those things that really fries my diodes. Saying Jedi must be unattached is like saying Dad, Master and Mistress Blayne, and Uncle Ezra and Aunt Mara are a bunch of heretics. It’s like saying Jacen and Ayelet and I shouldn’t even be here. So I was less than emotion-yet-peace when I shot back, “Yeah, but a lot of the stuff in them about non-attachment and training infants were political decisions because of the whole Pius Dea thing.” (See, Solo, you’re not the only one who knows stuff) “Isn't it more important that we seek the will of the Fork…”

    Yeah, I actually said “the will of the Fork”.

    I guess that’s what happens when you have more emotion than peace. Snickers erupted all over the classroom—fortunately Dad is really good at squashing That Kind of Nonsense—but Ben just tossed his perfectly coiffed hair and sneered at me. If Dad hadn’t been the instructor, I would have spent the rest of class making myself invisible in the Force, which is one technique I happen to be really good at. I’ve had lots of practice.

    Somehow I got through lightsaber katas without making a fool myself or cutting off my own foot or impaling myself, which would not actually have surprised me with the day I’ve been having.

    Well, there you go, a typical day for me—and I think it just goes to show why there will never be a “Ballad of Ronen Syndulla-Jarrus”.

    Notes:
    Shaya Stari and her hit song "Ma Swets Patogga" (Huttese for "My Sweet Patootie" :)) are fanon
    Master Simikarty and the Teyan Apologia are canon and do seem to be the source of the non-attachment doctrine.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2018
  3. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    OW! That is one interesting, but I sure don't want to have another one like it kind of day! [face_laugh] Zofi's reactions certainly don't ramp up the self-esteem do they? :eek: She may not have an oversized ego, but if she is "used" to guys thinking she's "perfect" & gushy about it, she won't think anything of someone who's shy and not full of empty compliments. Then of course the lab mishap didn't help. And wow, it's a shame that the Jedi classes are a source of more awkwardness :( but you can understand why.

    Whew, these feelings are totally what one would encounter and feel during those churned up hormonal years [face_laugh] ... some of it you just have to slog through :p but at the same time, you wanna get to the other side and feel good about yourself, and also believe the ones who're telling you you're fine, ;) and that ordinary and normal folks is pretty much the majority of everyone, except for the ones at the bottom and top of the intellectual heap.

    [face_thinking]

    =D=
     
  4. Findswoman

    Findswoman Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    [face_dancing] [face_dancing] [face_dancing] RONEN!! [face_dancing] [face_dancing] [face_dancing]

    Oh, I’m so glad to see this! What a wonderful idea to give the lovably snarky hero of “Freaking Out” and “A Freak Like Me” his own diary—I enjoyed Ronen (and Noemi too) so much in both of those, and I’ve been excited about this diary project every since you first mentioned it to me. (And I apologize for taking my dear time to comment on it too; that in no way means I wasn’t excited about it.) You have a real talent for capturing the teen voices of the GFFA, and you’re really

    I know you were uncertain at first how to structure this first entry, and I have to say I think the “terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad day” approach turned out to be an absolutely perfect choice. What better way could there be to introduce us at once to the character and to his everyday experience—an everyday experience that’s as hybrid as he is, in a way, with both regular high school and the Jedi Academy, and the feeling of not totally fitting in in either place, in either everyday. It’s a real treat to experience Ronen’s no-good day right along with him, alternately feeling for him and laughing (with him, not at him! But how can I not when the black smoke spewing from the speeder is described as smelling like “the time Uncle Zeb made the caf for Life Day brunch!” [face_laugh] [face_laugh] (Uncle Zeb probably thought the stuff smelled divine, too! :p ) Truly, there are so many hilarious moments in this that I would be here all day if I tried to list them all!

    Of course along we also learn as much about Ronen as much as we do about his everyday experiences. In some ways it was really a pretty OK day—Mistress Eupraxia’s compliment, for example, and the fact that saber class went pretty much aiight—so I wonder if some of the “terrible, horrible” feeling comes ultimately out of Ronen’s own self-consciousness. (Not a bad thing, and completely natural for his age.) Heck, even Ronen’s reply to Ben (and I love how you’ve transformed him into Mr. Annoying Emo!Jedi here) in Jedi history class was pretty much spot on except for the “fork” bit (which I take to mean he was just hungry at the time :p ); Ronen clearly knows his stuff here about the Pius Dea business, and if all he got was a flick of that Perfectly Coiffed Head in return—well, things could have gone a bunch worse. So on the whole, things are not totally terrible and horrible.

    Which leads me to my next big observation about Ronen. He claims again and again that he’s just a cipher—the “school freak,” a “nobody,” and similar—but some really distinctive qualities come through in this entry, and I don’t mean the unusual lekku/hair combination that has him so self-conscious. First, despite his protestations about how he has LITERALLY NOTHING TO WRITE (and that was a masterful way to start this entry), Ronen clearly has a way with words and an understanding of what makes for good verbal expression, as we see in his aside about the “patogga”/“dianoga” rhyme in one of the pop songs of his era (very clever touch there). Mistress Eupraxia’s compliment on his recitation of the Jakspeeir sonnet (another extremely clever touch that made me smile like a Cheshire Loth-cat) suggests that those verbal abilities apply in the realm of delivery too—I too think he wouldn’t be half bad in drama club, and I wonder if he eventually will go that route, despite his feelings on it now. (Which are very understandable; getting up in front of a class to recite centuries-old love poetry to everyone is by no means the easiest thing to do when one is an awkward teen.) And then, on the Jedi Academy side of things, he describes all the special abilities of his siblings and of his Bridger “cousins,” while insisting that he’s got Nothing Special Going On—but then later mentions offhand that he’s especially adept at making himself invisible in the Force, which of course is a very distinct ability that’s different from any of those others he mentioned. And that makes me think...
    ...that this young fellow could be Jedi Shadow material. Indeed, I wonder too whether he might be one of those rare few who have the ability of finta sempli, the ability to pass oneself off as a non-Force-sensitive... [face_thinking]
    On top of all that, of course, he is clearly a loyal friend and a loving family member—characteristics not at all surprising for a Spectre descendant. [face_love] Of course, there are struggles there, too: we see from Ronen’s experiences in both Master Feipel’s ModGalCiv class and the Jedi Academy that it can be hard being the descendant of Great People who have Done Great Things, and that there’s a lot of misunderstanding around it too. (E.g., gosh, no, of course the S-Js don’t chat about the Free Ryloth Movement or the Battle of Endor at dinnertime!) But it’s loyalty and caring and love that are the greatest legacy Ronen’s parents have passed on to him—and although it may be hard for him to see now, those things will count for a lot, even on days when the Galaxy seems to be full of nothing but Ben Solos and Zofi Sirars. I know you have wonderful things planned for this bright and awesome young fellow, and I can’t wait to see how he’ll grow over the course of this diary—i know he will! :)
     
  5. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Ronen thinks every day is like that, whether it really is or not :p He's not exactly shy, but he's awkward--partly because he's just at that age and partly because he's convinced himself that he's the school freak. Though he could probably shower Zofi with compliments and she would still turn up her perfect nose at him; that's the kind of girl she is.

    Yep, getting through those years can be a long process of figuring out who you are and what you stand for. Figuring that out can be really hard and uncomfortable at times; fortunately for Ronen, he has more people on his side than he realizes--his whole extended family and of course, his best friend, Noemi :) He's not nearly as ordinary or uninteresting as he thinks he is!

    Aww, well thank you so much! [face_love] And thank you so much for this fantastic comment. Your enthusiastic support really means a lot to me...and Ronen!

    Of course, I need to thank you for sparking the "Terrible, Horrible, No-good, Very Bad Day" idea. In a way, it's kind been a challenge to write a character who has a fairly ordinary day-to-day existence. I'm used to his parents and extended family and their Galaxy spanning adventures; it's a contrast to have the action be the kind of school day that could more or less happen in in our own galaxy--and it's a contrast that Ronen himself feels keenly. But all the little mishaps with wonky speeders, botched experiments, and annoyingly perfect schoolmates are of course the Worst Thing Ever to him. (Glad you enjoyed the bit about Uncle Zeb; it's fun to think how these characters look through the eyes of the next generation!)

    Yup, other than the sulfur experiment gone awry and his gaffe about the "will of the Fork", it really wasn't such an awful day. I think you've hit it on the head when you say most of the awfulness comes from his own feelings of of inadequacy--which as you say is pretty typical of the age. Emo!Ben Solo is my take on what Ben might have been like before he went all Knights of Ren. This is kind of a "Star Peace" AU; the Jedi have stronger leadership here, because it hasn't all fallen on Luke. I think that with the guidance of Kanan et al., it would have been harder for Ben to go full Sith...but he's as insecure in his own way as Ronen is.
    For a guy with literally nothing to write, he manages to say quite a bit. :) Ronen doesn’t really give himself enough credit for “knowing stuff” , either about Jedi history and philosophy or Galactic Literature, or his own abilities in the Force. To him, that talent at making himself invisible is just something he does, nowhere near as cool as his siblings and cousins’ talents, when as you note, it’s actually pretty rare and potentially useful. I’m glad you like my little bits of fanon culture; I really enjoy rounding out the Galaxy a bit. W’lem Jakspeeir's poetry appeared in Teenage Rebellion as one of Threepio’s suggestions of appropriate love poetry for a very smitten Luke; who knows, maybe Brrrruuns’ “My Love Is Like a Dead, Dead Wookiee” is on the syllabus, too! “My Swets Patogga” was my attempt to come up with an annoyingly lame pop song.
    He really does have a good heart underneath the awkwardness and uncertainty. As you say, what else would you expect of Kanan and Hera’s son? He’s still trying to find his place in the S-J legacy, but he’s got a great family to help him along the way—both his loving parents and siblings and the extended family of “aunts, “uncles”, and “cousins”, on Lothal and around the Galaxy—especially his best friend, Noemi, who gets to have her say next.
     
  6. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Thanks to Ronen’s biggest cheeerleader @Findswoman for beta reading [face_love]

    Noemi’s Journal (I will know if you read this, Caleb Ephraim Bridger!)
    15/07 3301


    Dear diary—today I wore my fuchsia sequin glitterskirt to school and the cute boy who sits behind me in lab looked at me! Tee hee hee..

    No, seriously…

    First of all, those glitterskirts look hideously uncomfortable. I read on the holonet that the reason they glitter is because they’ve got polynoreltin filaments in them—and you know prolonged exposure to that stuff causes seizures in laboratory Loth-rats. No thanks! I’ll stick with my usual leggings; they’re comfortable and a lot more practical. A Jedi cares not about fashion. (Except maybe Aunt Annina, but she’d never wear something that tacky.)

    Secondly, who cares if some guy looks at me? Today was further proof, like I needed any, that most of the guys at NLUPS are a bunch of nerf-headed moof-milkers anyway.

    It started with Dack Vinolo, of course. Any discussion of nerf-headed moof-milkers at school has to start with him—he has to be the moofiest milker to ever milk a moof. He plays fullback for the Loth-wolves; I don’t know how Caleb puts up with him. I guess he is good at grav-ball, because he’s built like a bantha and likes to trample people like a bantha. But even though the bantha is smarter and smells better half the time, Dack still thinks he’s the Force’s gift to females. Today, when Ronen, Maatko and I were headed to our usual table in the cafeteria, Dack was hitting on Kaia K’dari. Kaia’s a first year who just moved here from Jothal. She’s cute but painfully shy—like pocket hare in a Loth-wolf’s den shy—and some of the upper class guys like Dack think it’s fun to make her blush. She was sitting at table reading, or at least trying to, and Dack kept scooting closer and closer to her and she’d turn redder and redder and scoot away until she had like five millimeters left of bench before she fell off of it.

    I knew what Ronen was going to do—maybe even before he did. Ronen hates to see anyone being picked on; if there’s anything that can make him drop his “OMF I’m such a freak don’t look at me” line, it’s a bully. He handed Maatko his tray and tapped Dack on the shoulder. “Hey, Dack, I think you should find another seat.” He didn’t raise his voice or scowl at Dack; if you didn’t know him, you’d think he was perfectly calm. But I’ve known Ro forever, and I could see the tip of his left lek twitching slowly, exactly the way Spots’s tail twitches when she’s ready to swat someone.

    Dack looked up at him with a smirk. “Nah, I like it here. Kaia likes me here, don’t you, swets patogga?” He put one meaty, slab-like hand on Kaia’s shoulder; she squeaked and her eyes went as big and round as credits.

    Ronen’s lek started twitching faster; just like with Spots’s tail, the slow, lazy twitch means “you’re bothering me,” but that rapid twitch means “I warned you, look out’! His expression hardened, his eyebrows drawing together as he frowned. “Doesn't look to me like she does. Looks to me like she’d like to finish her book in peace. So maybe you should go someplace else. Now.”

    “What’re you gonna do about it, Jedi boy?” Dack’s smirk got even smirkier. Like I said, he loves to trample people, and if he can’t really be running over them on the grav-ball field, he’ll trample them metaphorically (though he probably doesn’t know what a metaphor is). Ronen’s always been one of his favorite targets. “Your daddy doesn’t let you bring your lightsaber to school.”

    Except that Ronen’s tougher and braver than he seems. He may be perfectly happy to sit in the back of the room and disappear most of the time, but he’s not about to let anyone else get hurt. He just shrugged at Dack. “Lightsabers are messy and there’s too much paperwork to fill out when I chop someone’s arm off. Besides…” And now he smirked, waving a hand in the “Jedi mind-trick” gesture. “Who needs a lightsaber when I can just give you dysentery instead?”

    “Huh?!”

    “Hey, I’ve got an idea, why don’t you go look it up?” Ronen leaned towards Dack, wiggling his fingers. “Or I could just demonstrate….”

    Maatko made the squealing snort—heeEEE HUNH HUNH HUNH!—that is Rodian laughter, or at least Rodian math geek laughter, I’m not quite sure which. Kaia clapped her hand over her mouth to hide a nervous giggle. Like all bullies Dack loves to laugh at you, but hates to think you’re laughing at him, especially for reasons he doesn’t understand. His face scrunched up like a kinrath pup’s. “Fine, I’m going.” Of course, he wasn’t going to let Ronen have the last word. He elbowed Maatko as he got up, nearly making him spill both trays of synthsteak and mashed topatoes. Then he turned to me with what was probably supposed to be a suave smile but looked more like he had indigestion and a twitch in his left eye. “Hey, Noemi, why don’t you ditch the freak and the loser and come sit with a real man instead?”

    Ooh, what a tempting offer…. But I wasn’t going to let him have the last word, either. “Sure, Dack. Find me one and I’ll consider it.” Dack‘s suave-or-whatever smile collapsed into a scowl and he stomped off, muttering under his breath that we were all clearly a bunch of losers.

    “You okay?” Ronen asked Kaia.

    “Yeah, thanks.” She gave him the tiniest bit of a smile, her face almost back to its normal color.

    Ronen grinned. “Any time.”

    “Could you really have given him dysentery?” Maatko asked as we sat down at our table. “I would not expect that would constitute a proper application of your abilities within the Force.”

    “I don’t know. I mean, theoretically, it should be possible. We can heal by putting things in the body back in balance, so if we unbalanced things…” Ronen stirred his topatoes thoughtfully and looked over to where Dack had joined some of the other senior guys. “Maybe I should try it and find out?”

    “Ronen!” I was pretty certain Maatko was right, and Uncle Kanan would consider that a Very Improper Use of the Force. Grandpa, on the other hand, might have thought it was kind of clever and even Acceptable Under Certain Circumstances. But both of them had agreed on how we padawans were supposed to behave outside the Academy, and one of the first rules… “We’re not supposed to use—or threaten to use—our Force abilities on other students…”

    “Yeah, but we’re supposed to protect people who need help, too, and Kaia definitely needed the help. I wouldn’t really have done it, but Dack thought I could and that’s what was important.” Ronen jabbed his spongy synthsteak viciously with his fork and started slicing it to bits. Like I said, he can’t stand to see anyone being picked on, and really, I can’t blame him. If I could go back and put the fear of the Force into those barves who teased him when he started school, I would. Since that’s not possible, I’ll just have to help him keep barves like Dack in line—even if it does mean fudging the rules a bit. He looked up from the tiny cubes of meat-ish substance that were left on his plate with a shrug. “Anyway, I think Dad would be pleased that I settled things without resorting to physical means.”

    “Indeed! Dack easily outweighs you by a factor of 1.5.” Maatko’s antennae swiveled like miniature satellite dishes as he ran the calculations in his mind. “I would estimate you would last a mere 3.15 minutes in an altercation with him.”

    “Hey!” Ronen protested. “We Jedi do have mad Force body skills, did you factor that into your equation? Anyway…” He looked aside with a sly grin, the same one he used to get when he’d sneak the last of the Life Day Wookiee Cookies and hide them for the two of us where the older cousins couldn’t find them. “Dack was wrong. I do have my lightsaber with me.”

    “What?!” Maatko and I yelped at the same time.

    “Yeah.” His grin spread to Loth-catlike proportions. “I designed it in two pieces, just like Dad’s. Easier to fit in my satchel that way, plus it doesn’t register as a weapon when it’s detached. I figure if I could add a functioning blaster like your dad’s first saber, it’d be just about perfect.” He shrugged at the dumbfounded looks on our faces. “Hey, no matter what Dad says, you never know where you might need your lightsaber!”

    Some days I can’t decide if Ronen is insane or completely brilliant.

    Anyway, guys like Dack make me think I’m better off sticking with Jedi guys. They’re just more mature—or at least less immature. Not that they’re all bad at NLUPS, but there’s definitely no one there like Ben…

    Okay, there, I said it… This is the part where, if I was that kind of girl, I’d be writing Dear Diary, I am in love with Ben Solo… Maybe “love” isn’t exactly the right word, but there’s no one at NLUPS who makes me feel this way, that’s for sure! I know that half the girls at the Academy have crushes on him, but they’re all about his dark, wavy hair and his smoldering eyes— Well, yes, his hair is really (really, really, really...) nice, and his eyes...if I said they smolder sometimes when he’s thinking, would I sound like the kind of girl who writes about glitterskirts and cute boys in her diary? Because they do, kind of…. And while those things are great and all, what I really like about Ben is that he’s just so focused. So intense. So devoted to the Jedi Order. So different from the guys at NLUPS who don’t think of anything besides grav-ball, pod racing and hot girls. (And, ugh, I hate that! We’re in the 34th century now, and females are still being judged by the way we look?!) :p

    If only I could get him to notice me, I know Ben would look at me as more than just a pretty (I guess? Pretty-ish anyway?) face. And I know he’d see me as more than just my last name…
     
  7. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Dack is so obnoxious, and so I ADORED every single way Ronen put him in his place [face_laugh] =D= [face_laugh] =D= I know Kaia is grateful! :eek:

    Noemi's insights and musings were so wonderfully snarky and on-point. I like that she crushes on Ben not just for his "hot lokks" but for his "grown up" demeanor as well. Naturally she wants to be noticed for all her qualities, looks and personality, both. She has standards though. She's not going to pretend to be something she's not just to get him to notice. [face_thinking]

    You can see already that Ronen's experiences with bullies has made him more compassionate and proactive when someone is being picked on. [face_love] So of course the point of comparison came to my mind: if Ben had seen Kaia being harassed, would he have stepped in or been oblivious, maybe not heartless but self-absorbed?
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2018 at 3:53 AM
    Findswoman and Raissa Baiard like this.