Beyond "... Delusions of Grandeur!" (AU; Jaina, Kyp, Ganner, SkySolos, GAG, OCs; completed 3/1)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Onderon1, Jan 15, 2011.

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  1. Onderon1 Force Ghost

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    A/N: The overdue sequel to The Gatekeeper and the Sword: [face_blush]

    http://boards.theforce.net/beyond_the_saga/b10477/31379062/p1/

    DISCLAIMER: LFL's are LFL's. Marvel's are Marvel's. OCs are their own. This is a work of fiction. No money is being made off of this. Please don't sue.

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    30.3 ABY: Solo Apartments, Senate District, Coruscant:
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    Jaina took another deep breath as she and her party left the turbolift to head for her parents' conapt. She still wasn't entirely sure how this was going to down, but she hoped they'd be understanding.

    Not every day you leave without even a goodbye more than a year earlier, and come back with a baby and his father-whom-you're-not-marrying, Jaina reflected, smiling at her son Rian as the 6-month-old giggled on her hip. With them were Jaina's loyal R2 unit Cappie, and Ganner Rhysode - who was Rian's father, and who was being remarkably understanding about the whole business.

    Rian had been the result of a particularly incendiary night between Jaina and Ganner during Fete Week of '29 ABY, after Jaina's infuriated break-up with Jag Fel over secrets he'd been keeping from her. Not realizing she was pregnant at the time, Jaina had left Denon for Terminus, at the far galactic south, and she'd opened a junkyard to live on. She quickly realized she was expecting, and with Cappie's help, managed to balance maternity and entrepeneurship, albeit not always easily.

    And now I'm coming home ...

    Jaina snapped out of her reverie, sensing multiple Force-signatures - both familiar ones, like her mother and Jacen (whose presence was both surprising and positive - he'd left early in 28 ABY, citing a Force-vision-inspired quest of some kind), and ones which were seemingly familiar, but not quite.

    Ganner started, smiling with embarrassment as he rounded a corner with Jaina, Rian, and Cappie. "I forgot to tell you with all the excitement - your family's gotten a little bigger ... and Jacen's joined the military," the scarred Jedi said, while Jaina raised an eyebrow at the odd sight in front of her parents' doorway.

    There were Noghri bodyguards, as Jaina had expected. But they were mixed in with human troops, both male and female, who were wearing black body armor very similar to that of stormtroopers - black plastoid plates over a black bodyglove, with helmets usually attached to their belts or sitting near them. The troopers had the expected blaster rifles and/or pistols, but also vibroweapons and/or unpowered melee weapons on their belts or strapped across their shoulders.

    The oddest part about the troops was their collective youth - Jaina was pretty sure even the oldest ones couldn't be much older than she was, and she wasn't 21 years old yet. And the youngest looked like they were maybe 15 or 16.

    "What is this, the cadets getting VIP guard duty?" Jaina whispered to Ganner. She shifted Rian protectively as she saw some of the troopers frowning at her, but one of the men - or boy, really - shushed the other troops. They snapped to attention, and Jaina saluted them; she might be retired from the GADF, but she did respect fellow military.

    "Colonel Solo - Knight Rhysode. Welcome back to Coruscant. I'm Corporal Shevu, with the Galactic Alliance Guard - this is Sgt. Girdun, Pvt. First Class Tebut, and Privates Zavirk and Wirut," the boy with the severely-cropped brown hair said.

    Jaina fought an urge to raise an eyebrow as she nodded at Cahkmaim, the chief of her parents' Noghri bodyguards. "Good to meet you all ... 'Galactic Alliance Guard'?" Jaina asked, while the girl, Tebut, scanned her, Rian, and Cappie with a simple handheld datapad.

    Girdun - an ugly-faced youth with sheared black hair who looked like he was the oldest of the Guard troopers - grinned nastily and said, "We're on the watch for leftover Vong warriors, Sith - any threats to the peace."

    Si
  2. Onderon1 Force Ghost

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    30.3 ABY: Solos' Apartment, Senate District, Coruscant, Core Worlds:
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    Kyp Durron was not known as an introspective individual. At least not to the general galactic public, who only tended to see his roguish, loner, snark-ready, aggressive "nontraditional Jedi" shell.

    The general galactic public would be wrong. Kyp, while perhaps not in the same raw intellectual stratosphere as Anakin Solo or Qwi Xux, was definitely not the same hot-headed kid who acted on impulse - sometimes catastrophically - as he'd been less than two decades earlier.

    He had gained wisdom, learned to think before reacting, even if he was still obstinate at times, and he did take time to reflect.

    So, instead of spouting the first thing that came to his mind when he saw Jaina holding a baby, standing in her parents' living room after having vanished for more than a year and worrying not only the extended Skywalker-Solo clan but the Jedi Order as a whole, Kyp didn't just shoot off his mouth.

    Instead - he spouted the second thing he might have.

    "Jaina. I ... you're certainly looking maternal," Kyp said, trying to keep the conversation light while he smiled kindly at the baby in Jaina's arms. The kid giggled, brown eyes looking at Kyp as a Force-brush of curiosity and happiness rippled across the Jedi Master's shields.

    "Thanks. This is Rian Solo-Rhysode ... my son with Ganner," Jaina said, not embarrassed but still hesitant as she nodded toward Ganner, and protective as Rian hugged her.

    Kyp blinked - processing what he'd heard - and sorted through the sheer variety of emotions that that statement generated, as well as Jaina's tone of voice and Force-presence when she'd spoken. She wasn't being obnoxious or overly proud, Kyp could tell.

    It still made him reel, as he recalled how Jaina had greeted him - "We need to talk."

    Yeah, we do, Kyp agreed, holding back his ... what, hurt? Disappointment? Jealousy?

    Yeah. Yeah, I think all three, he admitted, keeping himself honest even as he kept his reply civil.

    "Congratulations ... yeah, let's talk, shall we? Jacen, you and your merry band of COMPNOR kids can wait a few moments before we a-Sith-hunting we will go?" Kyp asked, falling back on some snark.

    He might have to work with Jacen, he might even agree with Jacen that Sith rumors needed to be acted on immediately, but he didn't have to blindly trust Jacen.

    There was still too much unanswered about Jacen's year-long sabbatical from 28.1 to 29.1 ABY - when he'd resurfaced as a quickly-rising star in the ranks of the Galactic Alliance Defense Force's ground troops assigned to Coruscant - to make Kyp comfortable with Jacen's willingness to act. Or maybe it was still the old grudge between them.

    That, and the weird devotion his GAG followers have for him, Kyp thought, choosing to ignore the glare the Lekauf boy gave him. Jacen whispered to the boy, who looked doubtful but saluted him and headed for the front entrance.

    Jacen turned to follow, nodding as Jaina gave Rian to Leia, nodding for Ganner to follow her and Kyp onto the balcony. "We'll meet you at the speeder platform. Jaina, I'm sorry we have to go so quickly, but I'll see you later," Jacen said, squeezing his sister's hand before picking up Tace and talking with the boy.

    He's not entirely odd, just ... too suspicious, Kyp allowed, recognizing Jacen's genuine love for his son. It was one of the few points in Jacen's favor, as far as Kyp was concerned, but he focused instead on Jaina - who was still the Solo Kyp preferred to be with more.

    She'd only grown more beautiful, he noticed now; yes, maternity was obvious on her, but as a new aura of maturity and patience, a compliment to her already stunning looks and sparkling fire in the Force.

    Jaina had grown emotionally, and some of Kyp's feelings shifted around - some of the things he might have said d
  3. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Hi:

    Thanks so much for the heads up PM. :D This is extremely interesting!

    I love Leia's reaction to Jaina's circumstances and their heart to heart talk. :)

    The K/J stuff -- Hmmm. [face_thinking] ;)

    Jacen and the whole worshipful guard and mysterious learning of skills while he was off for a year -- [face_worried] One big question mark and oops factor. :p

  4. Onderon1 Force Ghost

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    Thanks for reading. :D

    I like to think that Leia would be understanding, not just because Jacen is in a similar situation to Jaina, here, but also because she knows that Jaina isn't her clone. And, Leia had her own moments of "not-princessness," although never to the point of three or four boyfriends in orbit around her at once ... :p

    Kyp and Jaina ... there's still a lot more to work through there. And as Jaina herself notes, she's not decided yet about what to do about Jag. ;)

    (And Jag/Shawnkyr themeselves aren't settled yet, either ... [face_whistling])

    Jacen - there's a whole story there, some of which will be hinted at here. But while there'll be clues to his "missing time," the focus here will remain on Jaina, Ganner, and Kyp. :)

    (There are plans, however, for the younger Captain Solo's adventures ... ;)

    - Thanks again, [face_peace]
    Onderon1
  5. CelseteAntola TF.N Books Staff

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    =D=

    I love it, O!

    You capture all of the characters so well, and in so few words! It's great to see a fan fic that's got Ganner as a main character, and I certainly don't mind Kyp hanging around either. ;)

    Jacen, however... [face_thinking]

    Great job! PM when you update? [face_batting] :D

    ~Celeste
  6. Onderon1 Force Ghost

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    Thanks for reading. :D I'll add you to the list. :)

    Speaking of updates ...

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    30.3 ABY: Jedi Temple Precinct, Coruscant, Core Worlds:
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    They've made real progress restoring things, Ganner noticed, paying the hovercab driver before getting out and heading for one of the duracrete buildings surrounding the still-incomplete Jedi Temple.

    The Temple itself, down to the four towers surrounding the central spire, was being rebuilt close to Tionne Solusar's research of the old Temple. But, to much controversy, the entire complex was being surrounded by a series of pyramids of green-tinted transparisteel. There were a few reasons for the external layer being cited by the Galactic Alliance government - the most legitimate one being an added layer of defense, while the public relations reason was a "contemporizing" of the Temple's look - but Master Skywalker was privately known to disapprove of the cost involved.

    He wants us to remain close to the common people ... but the government's footing the bill, even if we're still living off of the interest from the investing of Vader's cash, Ganner recalled. Former Senator Padme' Amidala-Skywalker had passed along the majority of her husband's estate to her children, saving some of the money claimed for refugee relief, and Luke had invested his share to be sure the Jedi never again had to fear losing financial independence.

    The problem was, while the Order had enough money to keep its various praxia operating - nine of the 10 founded during the Vong War as a result of Operation: Green Sowing were still active (the Telos Praxeum had been lost in an attack by disturbing, ancient cyborgs dug up by Yuuzhan Vong settlement efforts) - rebuilding a central Temple would probably have bankrupted the Order. And Ganner knew they had to have some presence on Coruscant, even if politics seemed needlessly involved.

    But everything's politicized. Especially where the Skywalkers and Solos are concerned, Ganner remembered, giving a quick nod to a pair of GAG troopers who were patrolling the grounds. They were, at least, polite as they returned his greeting.

    Still, Ganner repressed a sudden moment of snarky amusement as he wondered if their superior officer was a truant officer.

    I know the recruitment age is 16, and that in cases of planetary emergency they can accept recruiting 13-year-olds, but ... a planet full of young people being recruited for government jobs? Especially military work? I know Jacen's trying to prevent gangs from taking root among the youth, but this is ridiculous, Ganner thought, shaking his head as he entered the Order's temporary office building and stopped at a checkpoint.

    The prefab, duracrete buildings were soul-numbing in their uniformity, as opposed to the Temple that was meant to be inspirational when it was completed, and the irony wasn't lost on Ganner while he let the Rodian Padawan on duty confirm his identity. Since the Temple still wasn't complete, the Jedi on Coruscant - meaning the Council members, their families, a token defense force, and those Jedi working to help the planetary restoration effort - had had to find a place to stay until the Temple was completed.

    The Senate's meeting more and more on Coruscant, so the Council wanted to be sure they were within shouting distance. Never mind that the Guard are more frequently seen in the Senate building ... after all, Jacen's silent partner is in the Senate basement, Ganner thought, thanking the Padawan as he was cleared to enter the
  7. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Oooh, enjoyed that a lot. Hope is such a pretty name and one that fits the daughter of L/M ;)

    Enjoyed the talk between Ganner and Luke and Ganner's thoughtful reflections -- he's very mature and fairminded and sees things from all sides. =D=
  8. Onderon1 Force Ghost

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    Mar 18, 2008
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    Jade_eyes: Thanks. :D

    Hope is going to play a big part in events further down the timeline, especially in helping her family confirm whom Mara's relatives are (and in helping Betsy reunite with her fellow X-Men ;)

    Thanks, also, for your insights into Ganner. I think he matured considerably during his few appearances in the NJO, and while his last stand was inspiring ... I'd prefer to have seen him stick around and become of the Order's heroes. :D

    - [face_peace],
    Onderon1
  9. CelseteAntola TF.N Books Staff

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    Great update!!

    It was really nice to get into Ganner's psyche; he's definitely a man of action who also takes the time to think before he leaps. I approve. ;)

    Jacen on the other hand... he thinks too much it seems (happy medium, anyone?)... I'm kinda scared-curious to know what's going on with him...

    Wonder what Mara's gonna say to Jaina? o_O :D

    Thanks for the PM!

    ~Celeste
  10. Onderon1 Force Ghost

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    Celeste: You're welcome - and thanks for reading. :D I'm trying to write Ganner as having grown up, and being a Jedi who's not hidebound by tradition and what the perception of what a Jedi "should" be.

    (This will be important down the line during this reboot of the Betsyverse, as the Order changes from canon ... ;)

    More about Jacen in the chapter after this one. (This one got long with all the exposition from Leia. :p)

    And as for Mara and Jaina ... [face_mischief]

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    30.3 ABY: Solos' Apartment, Senate District, Coruscant:
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    Jaina finished setting Rian down for a nap - it was a blessing, having a baby who was so able to sleep pretty much anywhere - and left Cappie to keep a quiet watch over him before slipping out of the nursery. Dad had broken out a second crib, from when the Solos had had three children under 3 in the same place, and Tace was already asleep across the darkened room.

    Maybe they'll be like brothers, Jaina hoped. The boys did seem to be getting along well; Tace hadn't seemed jealous of the littler boy, playing with him nicely, and was only 8 months older that Rian. Maybe they'd even be friends with their cousin Hope, in time.

    And Hope is Mara's daughter, so 'tomboy' might not be unexpected ... Jaina figured, reentering the living room and watching as Dad dozed on the couch. Mom quietly worked on some Reclamation Authority documents and Threepio helped her. Chewie was over at the Wookiee embassy, Mom had said, assisting with their resettlement efforts when he wasn't helping the Solos.

    Everyone's working to rebuild things ... I hope I can find a mechanical job. Worst comes to worst, I can always help with the Temple work, Jaina thought, sighing inwardly. She knew she'd have to face the Council eventually ...

    "Mom? What's the mood like with the Order? I mean, especially with - you know, Jacen and the Guard," Jaina asked her mother.

    Mom set her datapad down and took a long sip of tea before she told Threepio, "10-minute break, please. These numbers are all starting to blur - and I need to talk with Jaina."

    "Yes, Your Highness. If I might say, Mistress Jaina, it is good to have you back, and young Rian is a delightful child. Another member of the Organa-Solo family is a wonderful development," Threepio said, his sincerity touching Jaina.

    "Thanks, Threepio. It's good to see you, too," Jaina said, smiling at the droid. She turned to watch Mom stand and stretch, and asked her, "The situation with the Council's that complicated?"

    Mom smiled - that thin, not-quite-smirk that told Jaina that Mom had been busy in her absence - and stood beside Jaina at the window. "They're hesitant to openly say that Jacen's sudden popularity is bothering them, especially since the reconstruction of the Coruscant Temple depends on Alliance funding. Luke's definitely not happy about the expense and neo-modern architectural features, mostly the expense, but he's walking carefully around the topic," she said, looking down the way at where that weird green transparisteel pyramid was being built around the Temple complex.

    "And there's got to be tension because Jacen is Uncle Luke's nephew," Jaina said, worry seeping into her tone. She'd already figured out that some on the Council hadn't been happy about Jacen's situation with Tenel Ka and their children, and hoped they wouldn't be edgy about her own situation.

    Mom nodded. "Jacen's technically doing everything he 'should' be doing - most of his Guard work is ac
  11. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Hi:

    Enjoyed the Leia/Jaina talk very much -- their bright and insightful discussion is very thought provoking but the upshot is I agree with Corran.

    Anyone who has that much charisma and blind loyalty in their followers is up to no good, even if they start out with good intentions, which isn't guaranteed or a definite at this point -- not with Jacen :p

    *

    Now let's get down to cases [face_dancing] The Mara/Jaina talk.

    Wow!!!!!!!

    Hahaha!!!

    Liked that a lot!!!!

    But will Jaina eat those words later? [face_laugh] [face_mischief]

    Because I like Mara think Jag's the best choice, irregardless of the extent of the AU-ness :D [face_love]

  12. CelseteAntola TF.N Books Staff

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    Great update!! :D

    I'm still suspect of Jacen, for all the things Leia listed that were good... I just don't like the idea of an uber-obedient teenage armed force. *shiver*

    The conversation with Jaina and Mara was brilliant! Spot on characterization! I agree with Mara, Jaina will need to settle down with someone, which I suspect is part of the point of this fic. I like the idea of Shawynkr and Jag, somehow, so I don't mind if Jaina doesn't get him. Ganner's a decent fellow, but I don't see any spark (yet)... and Kyp's... well, he's Kyp. [face_love]

    I'm looking forward to seeing where you take this!

    ~Celeste
  13. Onderon1 Force Ghost

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    Mar 18, 2008
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    Thanks, all. :D

    AFA Jaina's love life ... there's a destination in mind, but how she gets there is yet to be filled in. [face_thinking]

    In the meantime - the long-promised (:p) look inside Jacen's head ...

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    30.3 ABY: 967 Commando (Galactic Alliance Guard) Central HQ, Senate District, Coruscant:
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    For a planet as savagely abused as Coruscant had been in the past few years - near-encounters with another planet and its gravity field, dovin basal manipulations, global Vongforming, nearly planet-wide firestorms - there were still some parts of the ancient city-world that had refused to bow to the shaping unleashed by the Yuuzhan Vong.

    Mostly down below, but there was the occasional building that survived intact. Including this one, Jacen recalled, nodding as the Guard hover-transport (intentionally designed with the delta-winged, boxy-bodied silhouette of the Clone Wars' LAAT/I troop transports in mind) came to a landing at the surface entrance of the Guard's core HQ. He, with Jori, Shevu, Girdun, Zavirk, Wirut, Tebut, and Kyp, off-loaded, letting the pilot take the transport to the hangar for routine maintenance.

    The smells were what made Jacen smile a bit as his personal squad and Kyp followed him from the external landing pad down a corridor into the warren of the towering military installation.

    Blaster oil, boot polish, the occasional chalky-fishy whiff of yorik-coral scented air from outside that hadn't been scrubbed half a dozen times by the environmental systems - this had been Jacen's world for about 25 standard months. He'd left Mon Calamari and the Jedi behind, come to Coruscant seeking to help with the reconstruction efforts, and also a new perspective.

    I already had my connection to the World Brain, and my Force senses. But I'd tried to step back from the truth Vergere showed me ... the one I don't think even she saw, Jacen thought, nodding for Girdun, his second-in-command in the field, to step over to him outside their main offices.

    "Give the others a 15-minute break before we go into the briefing. Prep the holotank with the data Lekauf picked up on recce with Zavirk and Tebut this morning. Cadet, you already downloaded your field data into the main core, right?" Jacen asked, satisfied and proud when the boy saluted sharply and nodded.

    "Yessirs. I made sure to cross-reference the data with the map, Captain," Jori said, professional beyond his years. Although Jacen considered the boy to be like another kid brother to him, Cadet Lekauf was still a member of the Guard - albeit a trainee whose current field work was carefully monitored, and never undertaken without at least one fully-trained soldier with him.

    Jori's already mature for his age - too much so, after all he's been through - and I'm not going to overwhelm him with things he's not ready for, Jacen vowed, giving Jori a quick, proud smile. The 12-year-old grinned quickly, but became serious again as Jacen nodded for the boy to follow him and Kyp into Jacen's office.

    Kyp was shielding well enough in the Force, but the occasional slip of his facial expressions betrayed his unease at being among the military. Actually, Jacen didn't blame him.

    It'd taken him a while to adjust to military life, and the seemingly-odd duality that the mostly-disciplined, sometimes ferocious, minds of Jacen's fellow soldiers radiated. Kenth Hamner's commisseration about "hurry up and wait" made more sense these days.

    But I'd already survived one crucible with Vergere's teaching - been melted down to my bare essence in the Embrace of Pain, and learned to work through pain, master it instead of it mastering me. Boot camp wasn't nearly so hard ... it was learning to face again what I learned beneath the Jedi Temple's ruins ...

    Jacen shook his mind clear, focusing on where he was - another critical lesson he'd relearned in the Galactic Allianc
  14. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Oooh, the plot does thicken =D= And Jacen's reasonings and insights seem well-motivated [face_thinking]
  15. Onderon1 Force Ghost

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    Jade_eyes: Thanks. Stopping the Sith threat is definitely going to play a large role in this Jacen's future, although stabilizing Coruscant will be his focus in the short term. [face_thinking]

    (That, and as much as I like Legacy, I find it hard to believe it'd take Luke's Order - or Jacen - 90 some-odd years to uncover One Sith. :p)

    - more soon, [face_peace]
    Onderon1
  16. Onderon1 Force Ghost

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    A/N: A quick update ... :)

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    30.3 ABY: Jedi Temple District, Coruscant, Core Worlds:
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    "Wait - wait. Jaina's back, with a baby BY GANNER, and Jacen's Sith-paranoia is ... justified?"

    Corran Horn looked up from the report Ganner had filed into the central datacore of the Temple - which, despite its not-quite-finished status, was quite livable - and shook his head at the news. He supported the Galactic Alliance wholeheartedly, mostly for its stabilizing effect on a galaxy that was still struggling to get back to something like normal.

    But I didn't think we'd fall back to COMPNOR, Sith infiltration, and Skywalker family weirdness ... the Corellian Jedi Master thought, looking around the meeting in the Jedi Temple's High Council chamber. Despite the details remaining to finish the Temple's construction, the interior of the Temple was both livable and furnished, and as a gesture of "getting back to normal," Corran had been one of the first Jedi to take up permanent residence in the Temple.

    So far, though, I'm one of the few, Corran thought, looking around at the other gathered members of the High Council. The group's existence was a political hot button to those in the Senate who still held that a strong Jedi Order was a threat to planetary independence - that the Order's financial support from the Alliance was making the Order beholden to Cal Omas' administration, and thus that the Jedi would be used to enforce the Alliance's policies.

    It was rather understandable that Corran's fellow Masters were wary of being seen as too eager to move into their new "home" at a time when the political atmosphere was getting more poisonous between the Jedi and politicians like Fyor Rodan. The sad irony was, to Corran's perspective, that Omas was getting a much more willing group of bully boys in the GAG than the Jedi would ever truly be.

    Assuming, of course, that Jacen doesn't get a taste for politics. A million soldiers between 16 to 20 or 21 years of age, mostly human, looking at Jacen as a hero ... and we can't say that he hasn't worked hard to earn that reputation, Corran thought, sighing at the note Kyp had sent just a few moments ago.

    The footage of what looked like a Darth Maul fanatic breaking out a red lightsaber and Force lighting wasn't reassuring. Coruscant absolutely did NOT need Sith interference in its reconstruction efforts, whatever the plan might be - just frustrating rebuilding, or something worse - and Jedi action was totally mandated, as far as Corran was concerned.

    The question is, what do we do ...?

    "Thisz one believes we should ask Jacen to meet with us and discuss more cooperation. Jacen might be able to stop thisz Sith - or Kyp could - but thesze young onesz in the Guard will be maimed or killed fighting thisz Szith," Saba Sebatyne sissed, real concern in her tone. Corran acknowledged the semi-maternal nature of the Barabel's worry - her son Tesar was important to her, as Corran's children, Valin and Jysella, were his world ... even if he didn't see them nearly often enough.

    "Are we so sure that these Guardsmen will be so weak? They have been trained in various combat methods, and we've seen the aftermath of some of their 'enforcement actions.' I don't want to see any of them harmed, either, but they are not so weak as we might believe," Cilghal said, hesitation, sorrow, and wariness in her Force presence. She wasn't a fan of the Guard, more from the extent of their willingness to use force than the political concerns they posed.

    "Neither are we talking about an army of cross-trained Force sensitives, Cilghal. Mark my words, we're going to see a terrible death toll if the Guard go up against a dark-sider. Especially if this is a Sith," Kyle Katarn replied, his eyes narrowing.

    "We need to know if this is a Sith, and if it is, whether it - he - is connected to Lumiya. I t
  17. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Cool update =D= =D= Concerns about Jacen are well to be kept in mind and I can't wait to hear about Jaina's thoughts about her and Rian and where they fit in. :D
  18. bender42 Jedi Knight

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    Oct 15, 2010
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    just finished reading this. Very interesting. the plot is thickening... oh, and Anakins still alive. Yippee!!! put me on a PM list if you're running them.
  19. Onderon1 Force Ghost

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    Thanks, all. :D I'd have posted/replied sooner, but between RL getting hectic and the boards going in and out ([face_worried]), things have been unpredictable. :(

    A bit of a longer update, this time ... :)

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    30.3 ABY: Jedi Temple, Coruscant, Core Worlds:
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    Ganner thanked the speeder pool attendant - a non-Force-sensitive Duros, one of the support staff whom were just as key to keeping the Order running as the Jedi - as the attendant took the speeder for parking. He concentrated, following a trail of curiosity, happiness, reminiscence, and wariness - Rian and Jaina's Force-presences tended to intermingle, even now - and nodded as he picked up on another, powerful Force-signature, one that was well-shielded and focused.

    "Mara leaves a very specific trail," Master Skywalker said, smiling, as they entered one of the turbolifts. The informal "grand" Master of the Order was both happy and intent, and Ganner knew he could only guess at some of what the older man was pondering.

    "Master ... what you said, earlier. About not making Force-sensitives join the Order - or remain within it -" Ganner started to ask, until Master Skywalker glanced over at him and sighed.

    It wasn't an aggrieved, upset, or impatient sigh, though, but rather that of a man who'd discussed this very topic with many different people. "I'm not going to let the Jedi turn into some kind of cult, Ganner. Nor am I going to turn loose Jedi Shadows to stalk or harass those who choose a different path. I've talked extensively with several different Masters, and non-Jedi leaders - both civilian and military - and I've come to the conclusion that while we have a responsibility to help Force-sensitives learn control over their potential, not everyone we help has to be a Jedi," he said, smiling again.

    Ganner breathed a sigh of relief, trying not to be too embarrassed. "Thanks, Master. I just ... like I said, I want Rian to be able to choose his own path," he said, and Master Skywalker nodded.

    "So do I. But while the Council can't - won't - make people give their Force-sensitive children to the Order to be raised and trained as Jedi, neither can I deny the right of the rest of the Council to voice their opinions. You're likely going to find that at least some of the other ranking Masters will be concerned by what's happened. You have my support, though. I want Ben and Hope to have the same freedom to choose their paths as Tace has, and that certainly extends to Rian and Jaina," Master Skywalker said, and Ganner practically gushed relief into the Force as the turbolift doors opened.

    "You have no idea how much that means, Master Skywalker. I do have to ask, though ... when Jacen was here before with Tace, and Her Highness and General Solo ... how ... divisive an issue was Jacen's choice to ask his parents to help him raise Tace?" Ganner asked, nodding in greeting at other Knights and some Padawans as they passed them in the hall.

    Master Skywalker's smile turned a little wry. "It was pretty vocal, let's put it that way. It helped that Leia and Han were the ones who are taking care of Tace on a regular basis, and none of the Masters were all that upset about Tace's existence," he said, lowering his voice when they approached the Council Chamber entrance.

    "Ah. It was more Jacen's ... career choice, that made the Masters wary, right?" Ganner asked, sensing a roil of emotions from within the Council chamber - nothing precisely negative, but hesitant; it seemed pretty likely that the Council were waiting for him and Master Skywalker to arrive.

    Master Skywalker sighed again, but with a sad smile. "Exactly. I think some of the other Masters had this odd idea that Jacen was going to take Tace to work with him or something. How did Corran put it - oh, yeah. 'Imagine if Luke had been raised by Vader from birth,'" he said, both embarrassed and a little ... unsettled.

    The very thought
  20. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Super update. =D= I loved the fair-minded and warm atmosphere.
  21. bender42 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 15, 2010
    star 1
    Good, one of the best yet. I get the feeling that the Valin sentence might be some major foreshadowing...
  22. Onderon1 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 18, 2008
    star 4

    Thanks, all. :D A quick update ...

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    30.3 ABY: Coruscant, Lower Levels:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Kark, he wasn't kidding ...

    Kyp had thought himself fairly well able to deal with the plight of the downtrodden - he'd been one of them, himself, on Kessel, a victim of Imperial cruelty before Han and Chewbacca had helped him escape the spice asteroid's hellish mines. He'd likewise seen far too many poor and oppressed people on Force knew how many worlds, and then the Yuuzhan Vong War had driven home the sight of refugee camps.

    But this ... seeing Coruscant, the planet which the civilized galaxy considered its heart, with toppled spacescrapers, Vong-moss growing amidst wreckage, and scuttering things that were quite alien ...

    We tell ourselves it's not supposed to happen here, Kyp thought, shaking his head as he kept pace with Jacen's command squad - all, now, in black armor and helmets, Jacen included.

    At least Jacen wasn't wearing a cape. Kyp had had to repress his usual snark when he'd watched the younger Force-sensitive (who was definitely NOT a Jedi any longer, great lightsaber at his hip or not, in Kyp's opinion) don his helmet.

    On the other hand, Kyp wasn't sure whether the featureless helmet with the flip-down visor was worse than a recreation of Vader's iconic mask.

    He shook his head, using his Force-sense as much as his eyes, ears, and yes, even his nose. The latter was surprisingly effective, when they weren't working their way through a thicket of Vong plants, some of which were rather smelly. At least one of the plants had hissed at him, and Kyp had gotten an unpleasant lesson in the life cycle of the amphistaff.

    And Jacen's reaction? He commanded the amphistaves to back off. And then he gave a grim chuckle and a muttered 'Now that takes me back.' To what, I REALLY don't want to know ...

    The fervor and determination of Jacen's explanation of his career choice were starting to make sense, though, Kyp admitted. The miasma of pain, and worse yet, grief and frustrated outrage, in the Force had only grown the deeper they'd gone, and that sense of eyes on the back of Kyp's neck had just gotten more and more intense.

    And then there were the dead zones, where the absence of the Force was just so strong that it was like the equivalent of seeing spots before one's eyes.

    Kyp shivered inwardly as they passed another such spot - a makeshift grotto of collapsed building materials and Vong overgrowth - and he hastened to Jacen's side. The taller Force-user turned, raising his visor, and nodded, saying, "Yuuzhan Vong community ... let me concentrate ..."

    "'Community'? What, you're not going to go talk to them? Aren't they all supposed to be relocated?" Kyp asked, watching as Jacen's gaze got that distant look Kyp usually associated with a Jedi listening to the Force.

    He repressed another shiver as the background static in the Force - the telepathic chatter of the World Brain - spiked, intensifying around Jacen, and the younger man's eyes refocused. He gave Kyp an almost apologetic smile, then called, "Girdun! Get RecAut these coordinates, tell them we've got a group of Shamed Ones who need relocation - and tell them this time not to come in with weapons drawn? There's no warriors among these ones."

    "Yessir," Girdun grunted, activating his comlink. The party got moving again - Jacen, Kyp, Girdun, Shevu, Zavirk, and the girl, Tebut, who was carrying a flamethrower - and Jacen gave Kyp an annoyingly patient look as they kept heading downward.

    "What were you expecting, going in with drawn lightsabers and howling threats? We're not animals, nor is this the war, Kyp," Jacen said, not so much condescending as paternal - as if Kyp was the hasty, violence-prone child.

    Kyp started to retort, but frowned as he admitted, Well, I was like that once ...

    Not aloud, of course, and he still kept an edge o
  23. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    I enjoyed Kyp's POV and impressions of what he found down there.

  24. Onderon1 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 18, 2008
    star 4

    Thanks, Jade_eyes. Kyp, given his background, should logically have a connection with the survivors ... [face_thinking]

    Also, a note to readers: Due to potentially ugly weather conditions in my area, there's a chance I might lose Internet access for a while - just FYI. So, if I don't update for a while, that's why ... [face_peace]

    - Later, [face_peace]
    Onderon1
  25. CelseteAntola TF.N Books Staff

    VIP
    Member Since:
    May 18, 2002
    star 3
    Great update!! I loved getting in Kyp's head!

    Jacen...seems like he's doing the right thing, but eh... I'm still feeling like there's something off with him...

    And I hear you about the nasty weather... we're in for some too. More opportunity to get uninterrupted writing time? :p

    Thanks for the PM!

    ~Celeste
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