1. 2017 Fan Fiction Awards!

Saga - PT In the Cards: a Raissa Baiard/Doran Blayne story

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Raissa Baiard, May 11, 2015.

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  1. Raissa Baiard Fanfic Awards Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 1999
    star 4
    Title: In the Cards
    Characters: Raissa Baiard, Doran Blayne, various characters from Everyone Comes to Doran's Place, and other OCs
    Timeline: approximately 17 BBY
    Summary: Doran and Raissa adapt to their new roles as master and padawan as they confront obstacles such as their own self-doubt, recovering stolen lightsabers, and rumors about their relationship.
    Notes: sequel to Everyone Comes to Doran's Place, Not Exactly an Old-Fashioned Life Day, and Raissa Baiard Solves Them All
    The characters were originally conceived pre-TPM, when Jedi were assumed to be able to marry and visit their birth families. Rather than ret-conning, I've chosen to assume that these things are very much discouraged by the Jedi Council, but not forbidden, per se.


    It was just after midnight in Merkesh City, and Doran's Cafe Alderaan was closed for the night. The last drunk had been ushered out and the staff had all gone home, but a passerby might have noticed the faint light of a glow lamp through the windows. Inside, the Cafe's proprietor, Doran Blayne, sat at his favorite table with a woman, a deck of sabacc cards, and a bottle of Corellian whiskey.

    He reflected that the situation sounded much more entertaining than it actually was.

    The woman in question was Raissa Baiard, paradoxically both the local Imperial prefect and Doran's new padawan. Several weeks earlier, she and Doran had worked together to help a pair of fugitive Jedi escape to the Corporate Sector. In the process, Baiard had discovered that she was also Force-sensitive. Unexpectedly-- or perhaps not, given that she had a moral code that frequently put her at odds with the Imperial leadership--- Baiard had decided she wanted to learn the ways of the Force. She'd asked Doran to teach her, and, though the Force alone knew why, he said yes.

    The sabacc cards were his training aids. Lacking any of the teaching tools he'd used at the Jedi Temple, or any real idea how one trained a padawan, Doran had had to improvise. As a youngling, he'd spent hours "reading" images off a view screen-- a ball, a cup, a speeder....a cup, a ball, a bantha-- as a way of learning to rely on the Force and not his own senses. He hoped that having Baiard use the Force to identify face-down sabacc cards would teach her the same skills.

    The whiskey was there to help him get through the lesson.

    Doran dealt out a line of five cards on the table front of Baiard, who screwed her face into the look of intense concentration she seemed to think was necessary to reach the Force. "Three of sabers," she said. "Two of coins, seven of flasks, master of flasks, and mistress of....sabers?" Doran swept up the cards and dealt them out again, right-side up: three of sabers, two of coins, seven of flasks, master of flasks...and mistress of staves. "Shavit!" Baiard exclaimed, slapping the table with the palms of her hands. "I was sure that was sabers." She glared down at the card as if it had changed suits just to annoy her.

    "Four out of five is very good," Doran assured her. "Let's try it again, but this time, use the Force to tell me your answers."

    "Again?!" Baiard slumped forward in her chair, dropping her head to her arms. "I've done this a hundred times already! How many more times am I going to have to do it?"

    "Until you can get them all right. Preferably without looking like you're trying to decipher the Imperial tax code and pass a gallstone at the same time." Perhaps as a consequence of beginning her training as an adult, Baiard had some odd blind spots in her abilities. Persuasion and mind-to-mind speech came easy to her-- she'd discovered rudimentary forms of them on her own--but an exercise that was easy for a three-year-old youngling made her grit her teeth with effort.

    Baiard turned her scowl on him. "I can't believe this is how you train to be a Jedi. It all seems so pointless and repetitive."

    "It's very similar to what I did as a youngling," Doran told her. "But you're right. It is repetitive; that's the point. Don't tell me you didn't do drills at the Imperial Academy." He left out the fact that as a youngling, he'd felt the same about the endless drills as Baiard did, and earned himself numerous reprimands and lectures on the virtues of patience and perseverance.

    From the look on Baiard's face, Doran knew his comment about drills at Academy had scored a point, but she wasn't ready to give in. "But that's just it," she insisted. "You were a youngling; I'm an adult. I should be doing something besides card tricks. Helping you reassemble your lightsaber, maybe?" she added hopefully.

    Doran poured himself another glass of whiskey. He could see where this was going and felt the need for some liquid fortification. Baiard had used Paolo's lightsaber briefly during their adventure, and, like a youngling given her first practice saber, she couldn't wait to try again. The problem with that was they didn't have a lightsaber that actually functioned. Doran had sold all the crystals out of his to his buy his new identity and the Cafe Alderaan, and Moff Cassius had taken Paolo and Alyse's sabers to Coruscant to add to Palpatine's collection. Baiard had given Doran an impressive Adegan crystal for Life Day, but Doran didn't feel like his skills were up to tuning and focusing it properly. It sat untouched in his safe despite her increasingly frequent queries. "I think it's best if we work on one skill at time," Doran told her, dealing out a fresh row of cards. Baiard opened her mouth to protest some more, but Doran held up his hand. "Ah-ah-ah, who's the Jedi here? Again, and this time, use the Force to tell me your answers."

    Baiard glared at him again, but this time Doran felt he deserved it. Attaining the rank of Jedi had been a battlefield promotion for him. Paolo L'szelo, one of the few remaining Jedi masters, had declared that what Doran been through since the Jedi Purge was harder than any test the Jedi Council could have devised. That might have been true, but Doran knew full well he wasn't a sterling example of Knighthood, and he hadn't exactly been a model student either. He'd never been one who could easily and unquestioningly follow the ways of the Force. He'd never meditated on the Jedi code as much as the masters thought he should. And he'd especially hated it when his instructors pulled that "I'm a Jedi, therefore I know everything" line on him. He was beginning to think that the Force had a sense of humor. "Again," he reminded her.

    Baiard sighed. *Ace of staves, five of flasks, ten of coins...this bites...seven of staves, nine of flasks.*

    *I heard that.* Doran swallowed his whiskey in a gulp. Oh yes, the Force had a sense of humor.

    And right now it was laughing at him.
    Last edited by Raissa Baiard, Feb 10, 2017
  2. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 7
    Wonderful start. Raissa. =D= You can feel the mentor/learner tension between the two. She wants something more stimulating [face_laugh] ... Looking forward to their adventures of a professional and personal nature. [face_batting]
    Kahara likes this.
  3. Ewok Poet Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2014
    star 5
    I will have to bookmark this, as I still have to comment on your AU and actually read the first story; but until then, a like of support. :D
    Findswoman and Kahara like this.
  4. Raissa Baiard Fanfic Awards Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 1999
    star 4
    Thank you so much, @Nyota's Heart! Yes, Raissa's a little frustrated with her lessons. It's like taking a college grad and putting them back in nursery school (at least in Raissa's view) :D

    Thanks to the Word Race, I give you this very long chapter....
    Chapter 1: Paolo-cron

    Doran sent Baiard home after an hour of reading cards; they'd frustrated and annoyed each other enough for one lesson. As he collapsed onto his narrow bed, his fingers brushed the holocron that was sitting on his bed side table. The translucent cube began to glow with a golden light, darker gold pulsing beneath its surface. A pale mist seemed to emanate from it, swirling and stretching until it coalesced into the figure of a man in Jedi robes. Paolo L'szelo had been the worse for wear the last time Doran saw him, gaunt from long illness and scarred from an encounter with Imperial forces, but the holocron's gatekeeper stood straight and tall, unblemished by the Jedi Purge. "Good morning, Jedi Jade." Paolo said, dipping his head in greeting. "How is your padawan's training coming along?"

    Doran rolled on his side and propped his chin on one hand. "It's Blayne, now, Doran Blayne. As I believe I've mentioned to you the last twelve times we've talked." Paolo's image waved away this triviality; like his excessively strait-laced creator, the Paolo-cron tended to dismiss fiddly details like using the right name in favor of waxing philosophical about the Force. Doran knew he should just ignore Paolo's insistence on calling him "Jedi Jade," but it was a title he didn't deserve and a name that was no longer his. "The training is going...slowly."

    "A problem, Jedi?"

    A problem? Where to begin... He had no training tools and no idea how to train a padawan, especially one who was nearly as old as he was and wanted to run before she learned how to walk. Doran shook his head. "I'm trying to train Baiard to rely on the Force instead of her own senses. She can do it-- I've seen her do it-- but when she tries... Well, half the time she has no trouble and half the time she works harder than the dimmest Gungan tadpole to ever grace Master Yoda's classes. I think Baiard's about ready to take up card throwing, but I don't know what else to try."

    "Hmmm." Paolo pursed his lips, considering. "No doubt your padawan's difficulties are a consequence of beginning her training well past the point she should have. Younglings have fewer preconceived ideas of what is possible and what is impossible. It is one of the reasons we start their training from infancy. Your padawan must unlearn all she knows in order to learn the ways of the Force; it will be a great struggle for her, I fear." He paused, raising one elegantly arched eyebrow at Doran. "How old did you say she is, again?"

    Doran had not, in fact, told him how Baiard was. First of all, he didn't know, exactly; you didn't ask a woman her age, after all. Secondly, Paolo didn't need more reasons to give him the kindly, pitying look he had perfected over the course of their interactions. He coughed diffidently. "Somewhere in her mid-twenties, I'd say."

    Paolo's flickered and popped in surprise. By the mid-twenties, most padawans had nearly finished their training and were preparing for their Jedi trials; Doran had been about that old the first time he'd started his trials. "The Council approved this?" Paolo asked with polite disbelief, once he stopped crackling.

    Doran sighed. He hadn't decided if there was a glitch in the Paolo-cron's programming or if he was just willfully obtuse. "I explained this to you before; there is no Council anymore. Palpatine, Vader and their goons wiped out the Jedi. You may be one of the last remaining Jedi masters, so I took your word for it when you said I should train Baiard."

    Paolo crackled again as he processed this information. "Well, then, I'm certain you're capable of training her. You only need to trust yourself and trust the Force to guide you."

    "Yeah, thanks for the aphorisms," Doran growled. "That's very unhelpful."

    "Such cynicism ill becomes a Jedi," Paolo reproved. "Perhaps Padawan Baiard would learn faster if you let go of your bitterness and self-doubt and recalled Master Yoda's advice: 'Do or do not; there is no try.' You have her meditating on the Jedi Code, of course?"

    "Sort of..." Doran shifted uncomfortably; discussing the Jedi Code with Baiard was even more excruciating than spending hours reading cards. The Code and its apparent contradictions still confounded him after more than thirty years of reciting it. Their last conversation had left Baiard throwing up her hands in frustration. "How can there be no emotion?" she'd demanded. "Everyone feels something. Are we being cautioned not to let our emotions rule us or are we really supposed to deny them?" In his best Jedi master impression,Doran had mumbled a vague non-answer, which hadn't pleased Baiard at all. "She has a lot of questions, but I don't have any answers for her," he confessed.

    "Jedi don't need to have all the answers," Paolo told him. "Only the willingness to seek them. Perhaps your discomfort indicates that you need to spend more time meditating. When I began training my young padawan, Alyse..."

    Doran's hand shot out, slashed through Paolo's torso, and smacked down hard on the top face of the holocron. Paolo barely had time to tsk at this rude dismissal before he vanished. He was certain to get a lecture later, but Doran didn't really care; the last thing he wanted to hear was Paolo's reminiscences about his padawan, Alyse Bergeine. Though the Paolo-cron had no way of knowing it, Doran and Alyse had been romantically involved, the kind of attachment Paolo and his Jedi Council cronies frowned heavily upon. Alyse had eventually left him in favor of her master and the chance to rebuild the Jedi Order. Their parting left Doran wistful on his good days and bitter on his bad.

    Doran struggled to banish thoughts of Alyse; he had enough problems without thinking of her. He groaned into his pillow. "Why do I even bother talking to that thing?" he asked the room, though he already knew the answer: there was no other guidance available. Of all the Jedi masters in all the worlds, why did he have to be stuck with Paolo L'szelo?

    An unpleasant thought tickled the back of Doran's brain; for all his sanctimoniousness, Paolo had been right about one thing. Doran wasn't living up to the mantra Master Yoda had drilled into every youngling for three hundred years. He hadn't fully committed himself to being a Jedi again. He hadn't touched the spectacular Adegan crystal Baiard gave him because he was afraid he'd ruin it. He was sticking with his card reading exercise not because he wanted Baiard to master one skill at a time, but because he was reluctant to try anything else.

    Because he might fail, might become an even bigger failure of a Jedi than he already was, and this time he wouldn't just be failing himself or the Jedi, he'd be failing Baiard.

    And that, Doran found, bothered him more than the idea of failing as a Jedi again. He'd accepted the fact that he was never going to be a great Jedi, but he liked to think he was a good friend.

    He had many friends among the staff and patrons of the Café Alderaan, but none of them was quite like Baiard. Doran had liked her from the beginning. Well, what wasn't to like? She was intelligent and witty, able to return his banter with ease. She was also stubborn and scrupulously fair as she struggled to protect the citizens of Merkesh City, leading some to dismiss her as some sort of strait-laced Alderaanian nanny, but Doran saw the compassion and desire for justice beneath it.

    Like him, Baiard had confronted the unfairness and evil that were rampant in the Empire, but she hadn't given in to bitterness and despair. She'd continued to do what she thought was right, risking her life to help Paolo and Alyse to escape even though it went against everything the Empire had ever told her. Now, she was quietly working to make her part of the galaxy a better place, phasing out the worst of her officers and enforcing laws as they were written.

    Their friendship had grown in the weeks since she became his padawan. For the first time since fleeing the Jedi Temple, Doran felt some of the easy camaraderie he'd had there. He valued Baiard's company and opinion, and he didn't want to destroy their fledgling relationship by being the galaxy's most inept teacher.

    Doran sighed in frustration. This wasn't how he pictured having his first padawan. In his imagination, his padawan had been some unformed, idealistic young being who needed his guidance, not a headstrong, articulate and, Doran had to admit, attractive woman who should have been his contemporary. He should have been working alongside Baiard, not spend hours trying to teach her to use the Force to tell the difference between the mistress of sabers and the mistress of staves.

    Sabers and staves.

    A wild inspiration-- the prompting of the Force?-- hit Doran. He'd been trying to do things Paolo's way, the Council's way, the way things had been done in the Temple. But Baiard wasn't a Youngling, the Council was gone, and Paolo's wasn't the only way. His own Master Onfroi had believed that the best learning came through action. Endless drills with image screens weren't the only way younglings learned to rely on the Force. Perhaps Baiard would do better with a more energetic method. He could find the equipment he needed in the marketplace tomorrow.

    Doran grinned. This might actually be fun.

    Notes: If you'd like a better idea of what Paolo and Alyse look like, I give you this photo of actors Paul Henreid and Ingrid Bergman.
    Last edited by Raissa Baiard, Apr 12, 2016
  5. Tyria_Sarkin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 9, 2000
    star 1
    Fantastic start! I was so excited to see this thread!

    Poor Doran. He wants to train Raissa but he's so afraid of messing up he's just stuck. And all he's got for help is the unhelpful Paolo-cron. [face_laugh]
    Kahara likes this.
  6. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 7
    Awesome inspiration and insight on how to train Raissa. She'll definitely appreciate the change in style/technique. ;) Like Doran's reflections also on their burgeoning friendship/camaraderie.
    Kahara likes this.
  7. Kahara Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2001
    star 4
    More later, but Paolo-cron as the actual chapter title is a thing of beauty! [face_rofl]
    Ewok Poet and Raissa Baiard like this.
  8. Kahara Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2001
    star 4
    Okay, I'm back. First, let me squee that there is more Raissa and Doran! :D I've been really enjoying the short stories that lead on from Doran's Place, so a sequel is cause for much happiness. [face_dancing]

    Really liked how their personalities shine through right from the beginning here. While Doran may not be as embittered as he used to be, it's still a long road that he's on. The wry, sometimes caustic view of the world is still there. So is the tendency to go for something alcoholic when under stress (which is hardly surprising given his history, but ouch.) And Raissa, being the direct, practical, let's-get-this-done person that she is, of course has trouble being patient with exercises that are basically intended for a much younger age group.

    [face_laugh] Like the very Merkesh City feeling choice of sabacc cards as a basis for training methods; even though it didn't work out so well, it lends that distinctive feel of the setting to things.

    The way that Doran is having to re-think how Jedi learn is very interesting, including his noticing that Raissa has particular talents and weaknesses because of her experiences (and lack thereof.)

    Great conversation here; I like how they both have a point. From a certain point of view, of course. Doran is right that the skills need to become reflex -- and any challenging thing is going to require a lot of practice. Raissa is rather eager to get to the part with the special effects and whooshy noises. :p But there is something to what she says, and I like that we see Doran come to a bit of the same conclusion after some thought in the next chapter. One thing that is radically different from the old Jedi is that he's an adult training an adult. That creates a whole new host of challenges. The reappearance of the crystal is a nice reference to the Life Day story, and I like how Doran is still kind of waffling over what to do about it. Seems very realistic for him, and for Raissa to want to be off to the races.

    Nice combination of the serious (Doran's lasting issues and self-doubt) with the downright funny (the realization that he has become -- oh no -- just like the teachers who annoyed him once upon a time. :p )

    Oh, and this:

    (From your reply to Nyota's Heart)

    Makes me think, "Hey, I've had dreams like that!" They're the worst too. :rolleyes:


    Oh, Paolo-cron. :oops:He's almost as good as the real thing -- for irritating Doran, at any rate. ;) Really love his rather... selective sense of reality throughout. It does seem that he just conveniently forgets the things that are perturbing. Like, you know, the Empire.

    Doran's comment about Raissa taking up card-throwing was hilarious in that "I'm on the edge of serious frustration and so is she" kind of way.

    [face_laugh] I just loved this moment, and Paolo-cron's confused but very Paolo-ish response.

    [face_rofl] The funny thing is, a lot of Paolo-cron's advice would be perfectly sound, but the delivery system is... umm. Troublesome. Mostly to the specific person who ended up with it. ("Of all the Jedi masters in all the worlds" -- I've got to watch that movie, haven't I? [face_laugh]) But really, it just doesn't do to mention Doran's bitterness to Doran. There's no getting anywhere with that.

    "Well, if real me thought it seemed like a good idea at the time then who am I to argue?" :p

    Liked the realization that it was risking the friendship he already had and also being afraid to try and fail that is behind this problem. Doran's thoughts on Raissa were very well-expressed and heartwarming. :) And it's nice to see that she's been able to work on some of the problems since Cassius and company departed. Even if it must be like shoveling the walk while it's still snowing.

    The final inspiration makes for a great end to the chapter, and it seems like another little step forward for Doran. He doesn't have to do everything by the book -- and quite likely shouldn't.
    Ewok Poet and Raissa Baiard like this.
  9. Chyntuck Fanfic Awards Overseer

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Jul 11, 2014
    star 5
    They're baaaaaaaack! [face_dancing]
    ... and Doran still sounds exactly like Bogie, down to the last detail of "liquid fortification" [face_laugh]

    I squeed at how, between the deck of sabacc cards as a teaching aid and
    ... we're taken straight back to the gritty atmosphere of Casablanca Doran's Place.

    I also really, really like the premise that, in the time between the end of Doran's Place and this, Raissa and Doran have gone in somewhat different directions -- she's so eager now to learn about the Force that she wants to start with lightsabers straight away, whereas he's having doubts, more doubts and possibly second thoughts about the Jedi, training, Raissa, Alyse and the universe in general.

    Like @Kahara, I thought that "Paolo-cron" was quite a brainwave, and the holocron's gatekeeper was no disappointment :p Doran calling Paolo "strait-laced" -- you used one of my favourite English words right there. With what we see of Doran's adult personality in these stories, it's really a miracle that he didn't get himself expelled from the Jedi temple. Paolo is so insufferable that you'd expect the younglings to kick him in the shins every chance they get.

    And then, I was happy to see my favourite word come back to describe Raissa as a "strait-laced Alderaanian nanny" (I'm picturing Mary Poppins in space right now [face_laugh] ), although Doran would beg to differ. The difference between how he sees her and how others perceive her was a nice touch.

    There's a week to go on the word race, so I'm hoping for more soon? Pretty please? [face_praying]
    Ewok Poet, Raissa Baiard and Kahara like this.
  10. Raissa Baiard Fanfic Awards Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 1999
    star 4
    Thank you for the reviews! :) I'm glad you liked Paolo-cron; it seemed like the kind of borderline disrespectful nickname Doran would give him.

    Yes, Paolo-cron really is something, isn't he? His glitchiness is my take on the fact that he is an artificial intelligence, and his programming hasn't been updated since before the siege of the Temple. The idea that the Council is gone and pretty much everyone is dead just...does...not...compute. I think you're right on target that Paolo-crown and Real!Paolo can be pretty insufferable but they're not necessarily wrong. He and Doran have a tension that pops up in a lot of religious/spiritual communities between those who can easily take things on faith and those who have doubts and questions. Neither way is wrong, but they just seem to annoy the snot out of each other.

    And yes, @Kahara, you will watch "Casablance." /Jedi mind trick/

    Thanks! I've actually been reading up a little on Bogart's biography for Doran's backstory. There are definitely a few similarities.

    :D Did you know Bogie was expelled from boarding school? Doran may not be quite that bad, but he's had his share of run ins with authority (he's Corellian, after all!) Paolo's self-righteous attitude owes something to the fact that actor Paul Henreid (Viktor Lazlo) was apparently so insufferable on the set of "Casablanca" that Bogie and Ingrid Bergman called him the "prima donna."

    Noooooo, no more crossover plot bunnies!

    The word race did wonders for this story; it went from being semi-permanently backburnered to having 4 chapters written. I can promise at least 2 more chapters to follow. :).

    And now we get Raissa's thoughts (with a special appearance by our old friend, Frugly :))

    Chapter 2: Reflections and Robas

    Frugly was waiting at the door when Raissa came home. The pygmy roba wagged his stubby tail madly, greeting her as effusively as if she'd been gone days and not hours. "Yes, I missed you, too, boy," Raissa laughed as she knelt down to rub his ears. It was nice to have someone, even it was just a homely pig-dog, think you were the best thing since hyperdrives, someone who believed in you. Raissa wasn't sure she believed in herself anymore. She'd been practicing with the sabacc cards for weeks now, and she felt like she was no closer to mastering the stupid exercise when she'd started.

    She sighed and hugged the roba. "Oh, Frug, what am I doing? I'm no Jedi. What made me think I could learn the ways of the Force?" Doran and Paolo had both assured her she was Force-sensitive and, indeed, had been using the Force without knowing it for some time. So why couldn't she use it in any purposeful way? Why couldn't she do an exercise that younglings who were little more than infants could handle with ease?

    When she tried to "see" the cards in the Force, sometimes it was as clear as if they were face up in front of her; other times she might as well have been trying to look at them through a starship's hull. Raissa had failed so often, she wanted to take the kriffing cards and chuck them in her flimsi shredder.

    Sensing her mood, Frugly whined softly. He wriggled against her and licked her face with his broad, sloppy tongue. "Ugh, thanks," Raissa laughed. She wiped the slobber off her cheek and stood up. "I guess we'd better get to bed so I can get a few hours sleep before I have to go in to the garrison. Come on." Frugly trotted into the bedroom behind her, his two-toed feet clicking on the tile floor. He jumped up onto the bed and settled in with a huff.

    It was really quite frustrating to keep failing at such a remedial task, Raissa reflected a she shrugged out of her clothes and into her pajamas. No, it was more than frustrating; it was humiliating, especially when her instructor was the one person on Merkesh she could count as a friend.

    And that was pretty humiliating as well, but it was true.

    Although, she'd managed to earn a certain level of respect from the citizens of Merkesh City, most of them still had a well-founded mistrust of Imperials . Some of the locals were friendly to her, but that wasn't the same as being friends. And as for the men at the garrison.....

    Raissa groaned as she climbed into bed. Beside her, Frugly scooted over next to her until he was a wall at her back. He whuffed sleepily, and his familiar warm bulk radiated such comfort and contentment that Raissa could almost forget about her failures, her sorry social life and her less-than-stellar staff at the Merkesh garrison, only a few of whom treated her with any kind of deference. Most of them tolerated her, to one degree or another, but more than a few actively disliked her. It wasn't really surprising, given that Merkesh, like so many other Outer Rim garrisons, had become a dumping ground for officers considered "undesirable" by the Imperial establishment. Raissa fell into this category by dint of being a female officer, but she really didn't fit in with the rest of the incompetents, troublemakers and malcontents who had been shunted off to Merkesh. She knew that most of them saw her an uptight schutta for adhering to protocol rather than shirking duty, cutting corners and taking bribes. Their opinions hadn't improved when, after a relatively short tenure at the garrison, Prefect Renau promoted her, first his aide and then to his second in command. Popular opinion had it that she'd gotten the job by sleeping with the Prefect. It wasn't true, of course; Renau was simply lazier than a lizard monkey and preferred to let Raissa handle things efficiently while he drank and gambled. It still galled Raissa that the other officers thought she couldn't have gotten the job on her own merits, but she tried not worry too much what that group of reprobates thought of her.

    Doran, however, was different. She cared very much what he thought of her, and the thought that he probably saw her as little more than an incompetent child when it came to the Force made her squirm.

    She'd known from the moment Doran came to Merkesh that there was a something unusual about Doran. He was not only quick-witted and capable, he had an innate sense of decency, no matter how hard he tried to disguise it with a blasé exterior. To see it, you only had to compare how Doran ran the Café Alderan with Verraro the Hutt and his Azure Kroyie.

    The greasy gastropod was the leader of all illegal activities in Merkesh City, and hence an influential and respected being, though Raiss found him repugnant for a variety of reasons. His employees toiled for pitifully low wages; most of them only stayed in his employ because they owed Verraro for gambling losses, spice, alcohol or a combination of these. At the Kroyie, pawing the scantily clad waitresses was expected and encourages, and cheating was rampant at the gaming tables, both by the players and the house. Doran, in contrast, paid his workers fairly. If you were caught manhandling a member of his staff or cheating at his tables, you'd get a sharp warning the first time, ejected from the Café for repeated offenses, and you'd be lucky if your credits were good at the bar. If the stakes at Doran's sabacc games weren't as high as Verraro's, you were also less likely to get beaten or stabbed for your winnings. And while Verraro wanted his stubby fingers in everyone's pies, Doran preferred to keep his nose out of his patrons' business.

    It hadn't taken Raissa long to respect the cynical barkeep's integrity, and as she got to know him better, found that she honestly liked him as well. His wicked sense of humor and take-it-or-leave-it manner didn't endear him to everyone, but Raissa found them a welcome change after dealing with the charming but utterly amoral Prefect Renau. Since they'd collaborated on getting Alyse Bergeine and Paolo L'szelo safely away to the Corporate Sector, Raissa felt that she and Doran were moving past simply liking each other and into a real friendship. If only he'd stop treating her like a youngling.

    Then maybe you should stop acting like one.

    Raissa shifted uncomfortably as she realized her inner critic's assessment wasn't unmerited. You really though it would be easy, didn't you? her conscience continued. You thought all you had to do was decide you wanted to use the Force and -- hey, presto!-- you'd be a Jedi? She winced again; Raissa had never really thought about it like that before, but she supposed that she had assumed all she had to do was open herself up to the Force and, well...hey, presto. She hadn't thought she'd have to spend hour after tedious hour practicing to learn to find the mystical energy field in the first place.

    And upon reflection, those were pretty asinine assumptions. As Doran had pointed out, she'd done plenty of mind-numbingly repetitive drills when she'd been at the Academy. In fact, nothing she'd ever learned-- from martial arts to dance lessons-- had ever come without countless hours of practice. Raissa squirmed under her blankets, imagining what her instructors at the Academy would have said if she'd suggested she'd rather do something mor interesting than run laps with the other cadets. They would have made her clean every 'fresher on base with a toothbrush. Her dance instructor, a sharp-faced martinet of a woman, would have sniffed at Raissa and pointed to the door if she'd said she didn't need to practice the steps of the boxnov three-step for the thousandth time. All of them had fully expected her to fail. Now she had a teacher who believed in her, but she hadn't put half the effort into proving him right that she had proving the others wrong. She tossed miserably and buried her face in her pillow with a groan.

    Next to her, Frugly grumbled sleepily. He raised his head and gave her a baleful look that seemed to say, "Some of us are trying to sleep here."

    "Sorry, boy." Raissa put her arm around him and kissed the top of his head. "I promise I'll go to sleep now." Frugly muttered at her, but snuggled closer as he lay back down.

    And from now on I'll work harder, Raissa promised herself. From now on' I'll be a better student, a model student. I promise.
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  11. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 7
    Terrific! I can well imagine every single Jedi, in the Old and New Order thought that more than once. Just open yourself up and whamo! [face_laugh] I love how Raissa is willing to put more effort into her training as Doran is moving towards being his own unique form of mentor. I think they'll mesh well together. :)
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  12. Kahara Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2001
    star 4
    Frugly is adorable (d'aww, stubby little tail [face_love] -- I keep picturing some sort of alien Shar Pei with a pig snout thought I can't remember his exact description) and it's nice to see Raissa also thinking over the issues with her training and coming to some new realizations.

    No worthwhile skill gets to its full potential without the boring practice part, and she knows that -- but it's human nature, I think, to start on new things with that "this is going to be cake" idea in mind. ;) I'm glad that both she and Doran are willing to re-evaluate and see where they might be making this Jedi training thing more of a slog than it needs to be. Also, it's nice to see Raissa's high regard for Doran, which has always been there somewhere in the background, but recent circumstances are bringing it more to her attention.
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  13. Tyria_Sarkin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 9, 2000
    star 1
    Yay Frugly!

    Yep, I think it's human nature to want to skip over the boring, repetitive practice stuff and go right to full proficiency. But of course she realizes that's not how it works. I like her reflections on Doran, and how she knew immediately he was different from the other denizens of Merkesh. Hmm, I'd love to see their first meeting. :D
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  14. Raissa Baiard Fanfic Awards Host

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    Nov 22, 1999
    star 4
    So the Word Race was great for getting lots of words on paper, but it delayed the editing, which always feels slightly less painful than root canal to me...and gets worse the longer I wait. Which makes me put it off longer, which makes it seem worse... Vicious cycle :p
    :) That's not far from how I picture him, maybe a little more boxer/mastiff than shar pei. If one an image of a Roba from Galaxies but it looks more reptilian than Inremember. I'm trying to make a decent sketch of him in all his so frugly he's cute-ness. If I ever get one, I'll be sure to post it.



    Chapter 3: Mistress of Staves

    Doran's trip to the marketplace proved successful; he found an Ithorian vendor tucked in a corner of the district who sold exotic woods. He bought several pieces of Onderronian bamboo and spent an hour trimming the long poles to the right lengths and making sure they were sturdy enough for his needs. He had them ready and waiting when he heard Baiard's tap on the back entrance. "Welcome back," Doran told her as he let her in. "I wasn't sure you were going to return after last night."

    "Yes, well, about that..." Baiard ducked her head and her long auburn braid fell forward, half obscuring her face. Was she blushing? Doran had never seen her do that before; it was really rather charming. "I thought about what you said yesterday, and you're right. It was stupid of me to think I didn't need to drill on the basics just because I'm not a youngling. So from now on I promise I won't complain any more, and I'll give my training my all...like I should have been doing from the start."

    "Er, thanks," Doran answered, nonplussed by Baiard's change of heart. It seemed he hadn't been the only one who'd spent a sleepless night contemplating their training. He might have expected that, given Baiard's over-achieving sense of duty, but he couldn't have expected her to decide to accept the card drills at the same time he decided to take a new tack. You really do have a sick sense of humor, don't you? he told the Force. If it was listening, if it was either amused or angered by this bit of impiety, it gave no sign. "I was just going to tell you about the new training program I devised, but, hey, if you'd rather stick with drilling with the cards, we can certainly..."

    "No, no," she replied quickly. "That's fine. What's your new idea?"

    "This." Doran tossed her a two meter length of bamboo, which she caught neatly. Baiard looked at it and cocked an eyebrow at Doran. "It's a stick," she said.

    "Wrong!" he told her, twirling his own piece of bamboo. "It's a staff. We're going to be practicing with them tonight."

    "Okay.... I've taken martial arts lessons since I was twelve. I'm pretty sure I know how to use one already."

    Doran grinned like a deranged tooka and flipped her a one of the Café's green napkins that he'd tied in a loop. "Blindfolded?"

    She caught it, too, and gave it the same disbelieving looked she'd given the staff. "Excuse me?"

    "Those interminable drills with the image screens weren't the only way they taught us learned to on the Force," he explained. "When we reached three or four years old, we started lightsaber practice. The masters gave us practice sabers and helmets with opaqueness visors and let us practice deflecting bolts from a training remote."

    "Wait a minute. The Jedi would blindfold toddlers, give them lightsabers, and turn them loose with a training remote? That's got to be one of the most horrifying things I've ever heard."

    "What? Training sabers aren't even half-power; no one was ever seriously hurt. Anyway, since we only have one lightsaber and it's currently not functional, I thought we could spar with staves instead." His grin widened. "Onderronian bamboo is light, so it shouldn't hurt too much when you get hit."

    Now he had Baiard's interest. "Oh, you think you can hit me?"

    "I'm not going to be blindfolded."

    "Blindfolded or not, I'll still give you a run for your credits." She slipped the blindfold over her eyes, shifted her feet and flexed her knees to stand in a ready pose. "Let's go."

    At first, Doran tried just tapping Baiard with his bamboo staff, but she pushed up her blindfold and glared at him. "Doran, the softest instructor at Carida would have hit me harder than that. Try it again, and stop pulling your blows."

    He stepped back and lowered his staff. The idea of hitting a blind opponent full force sounded only slightly more honorable than shooting giju in a barrel. Doran wanted her to learn, not get maimed in the process. "Maybe after you've had a little more practice. I don't want to hurt..." He stopped when Baiard gave him the look she normally reserved for her least intelligent subordinates.

    "I know I said I wouldn't complain about your training methods, but if you're going to do this, do it right. I've studied martial arts; I've gone through Carida. I'm not afraid of taking a few lumps." Her eyes narrowed further. "Doran, if you're doing this out of some misguided sense of chivalry...."

    By way of answer, Doran flicked his staff twice, knocking hers out of her hands giving her a sharp swat on the backside.

    Baiard gaped at him for a moment, then her mouth twisted into a wry smile. "I suppose I asked for that, but I'm still going to get you back for it." She picked up her staff and slid her blindfold in place, dropping back into a defense stance. "Bring it, Blayne."

    It wasn't quite that easy, of course, but it seemed to come more naturally to Baiard to reach out to the Force while sparring than reading cards. Doran suspected she'd already been tapping into the Force when she was under stress, and been whacked with a stick while blindfolded certainly counted as stressful. By the end of the session, Baiard had managed to dodge or deflect several of his blows.

    Changing training tactics changed everything. Baiard no longer greeted her lessons with the same enthusiasm she'd have for mopping a Hutt's slime trail and Doran no longer felt like he needed to consume half a liter of Corellian whiskey just to get through their lessons. He even earned a nod of approval from the Paolo-cron. "Very good, Jedi Jade. A good teacher adapts to the needs of his students."

    Within a few nights, Baiard began not just trying to evade Doran's blows, but trying to land some of her own. At first she was more likely to clip a table or knock over a chair, but sooner than he would have thought, Baiard connected a solid blow. As Doran rubbed his stinging butt in surprise, she pushed up he blindfold and grinned. "Told you I'd get you back."
    Last edited by Raissa Baiard, Aug 1, 2015
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  15. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 7
    Terrific! The new methods seem to suit them both. :)
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  16. Chyntuck Fanfic Awards Overseer

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    Aaaaand I'm all caught up! First: Frugly [face_love] I'm so glad to see you back, Frugly, and I hope your writer puts her artistic talent to good use and provides us with your portrait soon. Second: new training methods, yay! I'm sure it's easier for them both to relieve the frustration of their awkward situation/relationship through sparring than through reading cards :p And maybe it will help Doran realise that the Force isn't as judgemental and pompous as a Jedi master?

    Now that I'm back, I'm eagerly waiting for more, so I hope that editing process isn't too painful :)
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  17. Kahara Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2001
    star 4


    [face_laugh] This was cute! And I like that both Raissa and Doran have kind of had a chance to reassess what’s happening and realize their own blocks here.




    Something tells me that “boring” is not going to be a problem here. It’s really endearing how thrilled Doran is with his new idea. Takes a bit to get the bounciness to come out in his personality, but it’s latent in there somewhere. I bet he was trouble as a Padawan. :D





    Seriously, isn’t this what everyone thought when they saw the Prequels? :p Okay, okay, training blades – still.





    *snort* Really liked the playful competitive mood here. And do I sense a bit of flirting? I believe I do. [face_laugh] Showoffs. All their butt-smacking antics made me grin.

    On the more serious side, they’ve overcome a hurdle and adapted to circumstances. As even Paolo-cron admits, there has to be some change based on the conditions.
    Last edited by Kahara, Aug 2, 2015
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  18. Raissa Baiard Fanfic Awards Host

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    star 4
    @Chyntuck: just for you, a very rough sketch of Frugly. I'm also working on a vignette featuring him :) [IMG]

    @Kahara: the part about the younglings is a nod to the fact that my nephew was a (toy) lightsaber wielding three year-old when AotC came out, and my sister commented that the idea of toddlers with real lightsabers was scarier than anything else in that movie.

    Raissa and Doran may be flirting, but they're still not admitting it to themselves. And you know, the course of true love never did run smooth.....

    Chapter 4: The Trouble with Toydarians

    Doran was putting that night's take of credits in the safe when he heard Baiard knock. She repeated it insistently as he made his way from the office to the back door. "I'm coming, I'm coming! Keep your pants on! You know, if you're that eager to get started, I must be going too easy on you," he informed Baiard as the door slid open.

    She rolled her eyes. "Easy? I've still got bruises from what you did to me last night!"

    "Oh, come on, Baiard. You had fun; you know you did."

    "Maybe," she conceded with a smile. "You want to grab some drinks and I'll go get our stuff?"

    "What do you want?"

    "The usual," Baiard called back as she disappeared into his quarters.

    "Ralla mineral water it is." Doran slipped behind the bar, opened the fridge....

    And realized he wasn't alone.

    The Café's front door was ajar, and Doran could sense someone lurking behind it. He grabbed the first bottle that came to hand, devoutly hoping it wasn't the House Organa '57 he'd managed to buy out from under Verraro the Hutt's flattened nose. Doran crept towards the door, raised the bottle over his head, and flung the brass-bound oro wood wide.

    The pudgy Toydarian who was hovering behind gave a strangled yelp and dropped like a stone. He managed to catch himself just before he crashed to the ground and struggled back up to eye level. "Geez, Boss, take it easy! Almost gave me a heart attack!" Haaz clutched his chest melodramatically. "I just came back to tell you Sascha says the ladies' 'fresher is on the blink again. Guess it sprayed some fancy Twi'lek right in the choobies. Heh heh heh!"

    Doran sighed. "I'll fix it in the morning." Ah, the glamorous life of the cantina owner! The holo-dramas conveniently left out all the time spent wrangling with mechanical trouble and mopping up biological substances. The Force knew he hadn't expected to become an expert at unclogging drains and repairing blenders. He turned to go back inside, but Haaz was still hovering there like an oversized humming peeper. "Was there something else?" The hope that it just Haaz's usual complaint about how his wings were killing him and he was getting too old for this died when Doran saw the smirk on his maître d's face. His proboscis was twitching the way it did when he scented a particularly juicy piece of gossip. Doran's gut clenched. "How long have you been hiding back there, Haaz?" If the Toydarian had seen Baiard, if he knew they were training....Doran thought his staff was a pretty loyal bunch, but he wasn't sure even the most loyal of employees would choose his boss over the exorbitant bounty they'd get for turning in a rogue Jedi and his apprentice.

    "Long enough! Heh heh heh!" Haaz sniggered again. His snaggle-toothed grin widened as he poked Doran in the ribs with a knobby elbow. "Some folks think the Prefect's got her restraining bolts too tight, but I always figured she'd be a real nexu once you got her out of that uniform. Heh heh heh!"

    "I guess you could say that..." Haaz's gleeful chortle caught Doran off guard. He knew there were those who didn't buy the Imperial line on the Jedi, even some who still believed they were heroes, but he never would have pegged Haaz as one of them. In fact, he wouldn't have guessed that the Toydarian was interested in more than money, booze, and... "Wait, what?! No."

    "Hey, relax, Boss; it's about time you got yourself a girl. Don't know why you've waited this long." Haaz leaned forward conspiratorially; his breath smelled strongly of lomin ale and Bababbb ghanuj. "I hear the waitresses talk. Half of 'em would bork you if you gave 'em the chance."

    Doran was beginning to wish he'd conked Haaz with the bottle of cheap wine he was still holding. This was not a conversation he wanted to have, particularly the dirty-minded Toydarian. The idea that he and Baiard.... There was so much wrong with that, he don't know where to start. Alyse Bergeine had left his heart in smoking ruins, leaving him with no explanation, showing up when he'd finally got his life together, only to leave again. He was in no hurry to try that again with any woman, no matter how attractive. And, Minions of Xendor, Baiard was his padawan! The Jedi Council frowned on the ordinary sort of attachments, but they'd be kinder to a Jedi who been borking nerf than one who got involved with his own padawan. "Haaz, listen to me..."

    He waved away Doran s protest with a stubby, three-fingered hand. "Hey, don't worry, Boss. I won't tell no one. Word of honor! Heh heh heh...you two just get back to...whatever.... Heh heh heh!" Doran ground his teeth; he'd never noticed before how much Haaz's laugh made him want to punch the Toydarian in his proboscis. He was saved from conduct unbecoming of a Jedi as Haaz gave him a cheerful wave and an evil grin and buzzed off in to the night. Doran let the heavy door fall shut with a vicious bang. Haaz wouldn't tell any one, word of honor--ha! Doran could post the story on the Holo-net and fewer people would know it the next day. He stalked back to the bar, slammed down the wine, and snatched up the nearest bottle of Corellian whiskey, because, shavit, he really needed some right now.

    ETA: I forgot to credit Bababbb ghanuj to @Chyntuck in her fanon post on Lebnan cuisine. It seemed appropriate for Merkesh.
    Last edited by Raissa Baiard, Aug 7, 2015
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  19. Chyntuck Fanfic Awards Overseer

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    Jul 11, 2014
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    Oh this was hilarious! I especially liked Doran's musings about what the Jedi Council would have to say -- like that's remotely a concern right now. I think he's confusing Haaz with Paolo-cron [face_laugh]

    Hi there Bababb ghanuj :p And that's a very cute little sketch of Frugly, thank you! I'm looking forward to the vignette too.
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  20. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 7
    [face_laugh] [face_laugh] [face_laugh] A natural conclusion, considering. ;) It's probably the OT version of L/M, what everyone says: they're the last to know - it's plain as plain can be to everyone else that there's sparks between. :p :rolleyes:

    The "training" seems to be going very well.
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  21. Tyria_Sarkin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 9, 2000
    star 1
    Well, they do need a reasonable cover story for why they're spending so much time together. [face_mischief]

    That's a cute sketch. Love Frugly's stubby little tail.
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  22. Raissa Baiard Fanfic Awards Host

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    I guess that would mean that Mara comes by her cluelessness/stubbornness on romantic matters honestly ;)


    I'm glad everyone likes my little sketch of Frugly. I also have Sim versions of Frugly and Raissa (and their house on Merkesh) [face_blush]. One of these days, I'll get around to getting a screen capture of them. Sim Frugly is a lot more canine and somewhat cuter, but Sim Raissa is a decent likeness of what I think she looks like. No Sim Doran...yet.

    Chapter 4: The Trouble with Toydarians, part 2
    Raissa found the staves in Doran's closet, partially concealed by a rack of tunics that ranged from grayish-brown to brownish-gray. As she reached for them, a prickling sense of unease crept over her, like the electricity in the air before a storm. Except, she realized, the change wasn't in the atmosphere, but in the Force and Doran's emotions. He was suddenly tense and wary; Raissa could see-- or feel, or sense, or something-- him creeping through the Café, brandishing a bottle as a makeshift weapon. She snatched up both staves, wishing she hadn't left her service blaster at home, and sprinted for the door. Before she reached it, there was a yell-- not Doran's-- and the muffle sound of a voice complaining loudly. Though she couldn't make out the exact words, Haaz's strident tones and snorting laugh were unmistakable. She breathed a sigh of relief, and hung back by the office door. Raissa did not want Haaz to see her here. She'd worked hard to keep their training a secret, arriving after closing and always coming to the Cafe's back door. Besides, the nosy Toydarian was sure to jump to exactly the wrong conclusion if he saw her coming out of Doran's room.

    She waited until she heard the front door bang shut to come out. Raissa didn't need to see Doran to know that the storm she'd sensed brewing had broken; the feeling was confirmed when he emerged from behind the bar with a bottle of Corellian whiskey and yanked the cork out with his teeth. Raissa's lips pressed into a flat line. Doran had a bad habit of heading straight for a bottle when he had a problem. "Something wrong with Haaz?" she asked cautiously.

    "Well, there's good news and bad news," Doran said, after he finished taking a long pull from the bottle. "The bad news is Haaz saw you and heard us talking..."

    Her grip on the staves tightened. Raissa took an involuntary step backwards and bumped into a table. She felt her way around the edge and sank into the nearest chair. "And the good news?"

    Doran took another hit of whiskey. "He doesn't know I'm training you to be a Jedi. He just thinks we're lovers."

    "What?!?" The staves clattered to the floor. "You explained to him that we're not, right?"

    "He didn't exactly give me an opportunity to explain anything."

    "Well, why didn't you just use your mind power thingy, like you did on Cassius and his men? Make him forget he'd seen me?"

    "Some species are almost immune to Jedi mind tricks; Toydarians happen to be one of them."

    "Oh, that's great." The Force was supposed to be all-powerful, but it couldn't wipe one tiny memory from Haaz's sleazy mind. Or make him show up two minutes earlier so that he wouldn't have heard them talking.... Oh... Oh, shavit....

    I've still got bruises from what you did to me last night!

    Oh, come on, Baiard. You had fun; you know you did.


    Raissa slumped forward and dropped her head into her hands. She thought she might throw up. "You realize that tomorrow everyone in Merkesh City won't just think we're hooking up power couplings, right? They'll be talking about how we like to....play rough."

    "I think you overestimate our relative importance on this ball of sand, but whatever." Doran shrugged fatalistically. "People are going to think whatever they want to."

    "Maybe you can afford to be cavalier about this, but as Prefect, I have a reputation to maintain," Raissa bristled. And not just Prefect, but the first female prefect on the Hydian Way. She'd worked damn hard to get there, too, even if she'd actually gotten her promotion through a combination of luck and Jedi trickery. "The last thing I need is to deal with right now is stupid rumors about my love life."

    "Stupid?" The storm of Doran's emotions coalesced into something as hard and impenetrable as a duracrete wall. He eyed her over the whiskey bottle. "Oh, I see. Stupid that anyone would think the illustrious Prefect could possibly be involved with some sleazy barkeep."

    "That's not what I meant and you know it!"

    "Really?"

    "Yes!" She stared at him. Did he really think that was her problem? She didn't care whether he was a Jedi, a cantina owner or shoveled eopie dung for a living, but she was sick of people acting like the only interesting thing about her was her love life, or rather, their wholly imaginary version of her love life. It had been that way since she'd been at the Academy, when her fellow students only seemed to care whether she was getting top marks because she was putting out (she wasn't) and which of the cadets she was sleeping with (none of them). "I just don't care to be painted as some kinky schutta who's into....whatever, because I'm...not that kind of girl," Raissa finished lamely. She wished that particular phrase, while true, didn't sound so hopelessly archaic, trite, and pathetic.

    "Or maybe you can't stand for anyone to think you're less than perfect. You know, you're allowed to have a life outside the garrison. Have a drink now and then. Play sabacc. Whatever..." Doran slugged down more whiskey, and waved a hand dismissively. "It doesn't matter; in a week, they'll all be talking about someone else anyway."

    Raissa fought back the urge to pick up a staff and snap Doran out of his blasé attitude via a sharp whap upside the head. Did he think she should become another Renau, drinking, gambling, and doing whatever-- and whoever-- he felt like? He may have enjoyed himself, but no one respected or trusted him, not his men and not the citizens he was supposed to be protecting. Raissa was no prude....well, all right, she was. Maybe no one would care if she drank or played sabacc or even had a fling, but she cared. "For someone who doesn't give a damn what anyone else thinks, you're doing a great job of drinking yourself into a stupor over this."

    He slammed down the bottle and glared at her. "If I want to get drunk, it's none of your concern. You're not my mother....or my lover."

    "That's right, I'm not." But I thought I was at least your friend. Raissa stood up and marched to the door, kicking a fallen staff out of the way as she went. At this point she really didn't care if anyone saw her leaving the Café; it could hardly cause any more problems than the salacious rumors Haaz was sure to be spreading even now.

    "Where are you going?" Doran demanded.

    "Home. I've had enough."

    "But you'll be back tomorrow, right?" His voice had a plaintive note now.

    "I doubt it."

    "Then when?"

    "I don't know," Raissa answered, reaching for the door. "Maybe never."

    "Baiard! Baiard!" She ignored his desperate calls and let the door slam shut behind her.
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  23. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 7
    Superb stuff Raissa. This is perfect example of persons talking past each other. I don't know if that was your intention :oops: but that's what they're doing. Hello? Am I talking to myself? :rolleyes: Which one of them is not listening? :p I think Raissa feels totally disrespected again... [face_thinking] And Doran doesn't know what to think. It must be a guy thing. [face_laugh] Or a Jedi guy thing. [face_laugh]
    Last edited by Nyota's Heart, Oct 27, 2015
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  24. Tyria_Sarkin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 9, 2000
    star 1
    Oh dear, that didn't go well. Poor Raissa, feeling like she had to fight tooth and nail to get any sort of respect in that town, and now worried it will all come crashing down because of one joking comment and a nosy Toydarian. Somehow I don't think it will be as bad as she thinks.
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  25. Chyntuck Fanfic Awards Overseer

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    Did you say something earlier about whom Mara got her clumsiness at romance from? Because it looks to me like it could be any or her parents -- or both :D

    I have to say that I LOVED how, as they talk to each other and fail to communicate, the lame, sleazy Toydarian becomes even more of a menace in their minds -- because Doran can say all he wants about it being unimportant, he definitely wouldn't be hitting the Corellian whiskey if it really didn't matter.

    I can't wait to see what happens next. I suspect that, once the cantina's patrons are back the next day, there will be a lot of embarrassment in the air [face_laugh]
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