Before Masquerade -The Betrayer and The Fool - part two" posted 16/3/06 - NEW beaut competition

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Kit', May 21, 2005.

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  1. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    Well, it has been a while and there have been some changes...so I thought I'd finally repost these in some sembalance of order for everyone. I'll post one story up every two days or so :)

    This is a story arc that developed between HaiGan and myself three or four years ago and has been continuing ever since.

    It's mainly the lives of five padawans; Juli, Xanatos, Barin and Sara. How they grow up and why they turn out like they do. It's a lot of fun, but I'm warning you now that it deals with a lot of dark issues that some readers might not be comfortable with. Just be warned.


    Enjoy -


    Kithera

    Edit - Feel very free to critique this stuff (especially my stuff). Discussion is most welcome....
  2. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    FRIENDS

    by HaiGan

    ***

    A young Creche assistant led the black-haired little boy out of the nursery, towards the dormitories for the older Initiates. She carried a small, plain duffelbag with the boy's few posessions- clothes, toiletries and a datapad. He held her hand tightly as he tagged along beside her.

    "There's no need to be nervous, Xani. I'm sure you'll soon make lots of new friends."

    The boy looked up at her, his deep blue eyes trusting and his solemn little face perfectly calm. "I like making friends," he said.

    "That's a good boy. Here we are, this is where you'll be staying now that you're a /big/ boy."

    The assistant led the boy into a large common-room, the blue-carpeted floor branching away on three sides into passages leading to dormitories. Sturdy, low tables were placed around the room, stacked with holobooks, construction kits, puzzles and games. Cusions were scattered around, for sitting on. The boy took it all in: quiet, observant, thoughtful.

    A group of children were playing in the clear space in the middle of the room, acting out a fantasy of castles, princesses and dashing knights. Building-blocks and datapads became gleaming towers, flying flimsyplast flags snapping in an imaginary wind. The smallest of them held center stage, spinning stories about their make-believe, creating images with words. His archaic language sounded so right that the others' modern chatter became out of place. He gave no orders; the others willingly embraced the roles he painted for them, and in their minds they became poor but beautiful maidens, brave and handsome princes, just and dignified kings. He was the bright center around which the others turned, a child of sun-gold hair and sky-blue eyes, with a head full of fanciful dreams and the enthusiasm to carry everybody else along for the journey.

    The new boy watched it all with his shadowed, thoughtful gaze.

    The older children spotted the newcomer and came tumbling over to gawp, staring with the open emotions of the young. The new boy could see straight away which ones were shy, which ones were boisterous, which ones were caring, which ones liked to take control. He saw the way the smallest initiate stood in the center of them all, quiet and confident, drinking deeply of every little experience. The new boy studied him carefully for a few moments, then smiled. His deep blue eyes shone so brightly with trust and appeal that the golden-haired initiate never saw past the sparkle.

    "I'm Xanatos. Can I be your friend?" the new boy asked.

    The golden-haired boy gave one of his sunshine smiles in return. "Of course!" He swept a bow. "Greetings, oh Xanatos. My name is Barin. You can play our game, if you like. You can be..." his sky-blue eyes looked into the mists of his mind. "You can be Lord Telesian, Protector of the Deep Lands."

    Xanatos nodded with satisfaction. "Yes. I'd like that."
  3. imzadi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 19, 2000
    star 4
    These snapshots always held a weird combination of cute childishness and ominous foreboding of the future. The perfect mixture in my opinion! It'll be great to read these through again, especially in the post ROTS excitement. :D Thanks, Kit and HaiGan!
  4. dianethx Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 2002
    star 6
    I didn't read the snapshots before so I look forward to them. I've always liked Barin - his life was a very hard one especially for someone that sensitive.

    Great job.
  5. Healer_Leona Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2000
    star 9
    Excellent Kit, I look forward to revisiting these characters again. Poor Barin, is it any wonder that he wouldn't want to be a healer??
  6. PadawanKitara Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 31, 2001
    star 5
    I remember these snapshots :)
  7. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    I just realised that I posted two out of order. Check above for the *new one*. *sigh*

    Yeah, I realised that most of these were actually written and posted back in 2001 which is a bit scary!

    Kithera
  8. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    FEELINGS

    by HaiGan

    ***

    "Quieten down now children!"

    The Cheche Assistant's request went unheard over the initiates' shouts and laughter. A wash of youngsters split as it reached her and rejoined on the other side, then broke up into smaller clumps as one of the number lunged forwards, arm outstretched.

    "Tig!"

    The flow of running children suddenly altered direction and hurtled in the opposite direction, clambering over tables and sending toys flying.

    "Children, please!"

    The assistant was close to tears. She shouldn't have been alone with so many. She had only started a week ago. Surely Jedi Initiates shouldn't be so boisterous? She tried to release her tension into the Force and project calming waves at the youngsters, but it was hard with the noise and the chaos, and she didn't dare close her eyes to help herself concentrate. Things were out of control as it was.

    The river of hurtling bodies turned again, dashing along the wall with shrieks and screams. One golden-haired youngster braked against the tide, stopped and looked at the assistant, his sky-blue eyes oddly older than his years.

    "Why are you scared?" he asked, taking a step closer. The assistant didn't know what to say. She was inexperienced, but she was a knight. She knew she wasn't displaying any of her inner disquiet, but this boy had obviously sensed it anyway. The initiate hovered a short distance away from her, his face reflecting childish concern.

    "Somebody's going to get hurt," she blurted, as one of the tables was sent flying.

    The initate went white. "Somebody did get hurt," he said, his own face screwing up with every indication of pain. "Everyone SHUT UP!" he yelled. A confused hush fell over the crowd of children, broken by short, scared, pained cries. The golden-haired youngster limped over to the fallen table and pulled it aside. He knelt on the ground beside the small figure that had been beneath the table, then looked back at the young assistant in an agonised plea. "He is hurting. Please make him stop hurting!"

    Fighting her own guilt at having allowed this to happen, the assistant hurried over. One look was enough to show her that she needed to contact the infirmary. It was her fault, she let herself lose command of the situation. She felt close to tears as she hurried to find a holoterminal.

    The golden-haired boy watched her scurry away then sat down and buried his head in his knees, one hand resting on the injured initiate who was crying in snatched bursts between gulps of air. He rocked backwards and forwards, giving the occasional small wimper. After a moment or two another boy crept forward, this one dark-haired and dark-eyed. He sat down next to the golden-haired boy and put his arm around him.

    "It's okay, Barin, the Healers will help him."

    "He hurts!"

    "They'll make him better."

    "But he hurts! How do I make him stop hurting? He hurts, Xan!"

    Xanatos nodded and simply sat there, one arm around his friend as he gave silent support.

    ******

    The Healer breezed in with an air of reassurance and competence, a dumpy, six-eyed, six-armed miniature mountain of orange fur. His blue-skinned, humanoid padawan puffed along after him, carrying a large medical bag. The children were quiet now, with the whispering almost-silence of worry and slight fear. There was little need to ask where the patient was. One small boy lay on the ground beside the overturned table. A second was huddled beside him, face pale and tears streaking his cheeks, a third boy offering what reassurance he could.

    "Two hurt are?" Healer Fliese asked in a sing-song voice as he waddled across to the accident scene. "Say one you do?" he queried, glancing over to the Creche Assistant.

    "Make him stop hurting, please," whispered the white-faced Barin.

    The Healer chittered at him with surprise, one arm reaching to open his bag, a second delving inside to get out a portable medscanner, third and fourth probing gently at his patient, fifth scratching idly at the back of his neck and the sixth pat
  9. dianethx Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 2002
    star 6
    Well, I was confused for a moment since I'd already read the one above. The first one was cute but with just a touch of foreboding with the remark about Xan being a king.

    Looking forward to more.
  10. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    Sorry Dianethx, I just got a little thingy this afternoon when I realised I'd missed the very first one.

    Yeah look at the first story post not the second one. Sorry all!

    Kithera
  11. mouse2 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 1999
    star 4
    I remember these! I actually went back and reread them not too long ago over at Hell's Chance.

    I'm glad to see you reposting them Kit'! I love reading them. They really make one think. ;)
  12. Miana Kenobi Admin Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Apr 5, 2000
    star 8
    Oooh, I haven't read these! :)

    Awww, poor Barin!! :(

    Great job, Kit! :)
  13. LadyPadme Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 26, 2002
    star 5

    These are some very adorable stories, Kit' and HaiGan. It's fun to see how things were in the Temples for the younglings and initates. It really does seem like such an innocent time. :)
  14. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    Fairy Tails
    By HaiGan

    *************

    "Do fairies really have tails?" asked Nat, as the initiates settled in the dormitory for a quiet time after lessons and before their physical training class. Yaddle placed herself unobtrusively in a chair near the door, to keep an eye on them.

    Juli flipped her hair back over her shoulder and regarded the younger boy with all the contempt that a seven-year-old could summon. "There's no such thing as fairies," she said scornfully.

    "Master Yaddle said she was gonna tell us 'bout fairy tails," Nat mumbled, looking down at his scuffed brown boots. "Then she didn't tell us anything 'bout faries at all."

    The kind little Master's ears perked up as she heard her name, but she did not move from her seat.

    "Tales, not tails," Xanatos whispered to the younger boy. "Stories."

    "Oh." Nat looked disappointed.

    "Why should fairies not have tails?" Barin queried, developing a faint, distant smile that his friends knew usually heralded a story. Juli snorted and walked off to join the other girls, but Xanatos and Nat settled down to listen.

    "'Cos there's no such things as fairies," said Kurtas as he bounded past the end of Barin's bed and hastily stopped when he spotted Yaddle's gentle glare.

    "Is too!" Nat protested.

    "How do you know?" Barin asked the newcomer with a slight tilt of his head.

    "Nobody's ever seen a fairy. They don't exist," Kurtas stated flatly.

    Barin was unperturbed. "Have you ever seen the smell of a flower?"

    "'Course not," Kurtas said scornfully, hopping onto the bed and worming his way in between Xanatos and Nat. "What's that got to do with it?"

    "Just because we are made of stuff we can see and touch..." Barin gently pinched Nat's nose to illustrate, and the younger boy giggled. "...does not mean that anything we cannot see does not exist. There might be people made of other stuff. Stuff we are not able to see."

    "So how would they see each other then?" Kurtas demanded.

    A fanciful light danced in Barin's eyes. "How do you use the Force?"

    "What's that got to do with-" Kurtas began.

    "'Cos Jedi can use the Force, but other people can't!" Nat piped up, pleased to have realised what Barin was thinking.

    "So we've got 'Force Fairies' now?" scoffed Kurtas. "Invisible people that nobody can see, even Jedi?"

    "Why should we think we know everything, just because we are Jedi? Just because we are Jedi does not mean we are special. There are lots of things in the Galaxy that are much more wonderful than... than a few people who can use the Force. How about the Force, even- that has to be pretty amazing to do all the things that all the Jedi in the Galaxy do. How about a star? Just one star can keep billions and billions of people alive and warm and fed, just by being there. Jedi are not important when you think about that. We are just tiny dots in a great big universe."

    "Jedi are special," Xanatos said, staring intently at Barin from beneath his dark fringe.

    "Jedi are the protectors of the Galaxy!" Kurtas said in a booming voice.

    "Yeah! Defenderers of Peace and Justice!" added Nat.

    "They can use the Force, to... to see into the future, and stop bad things from happening, and... and to stop wars," said Xanatos.

    "And get people to make friends, and to heal sick people," Nat nodded solemly.

    "And to see fairies." Kurtas grinned teasingly at Nat.

    "Like that one?" Nat pointed towards Yaddle. The others looked across.

    Barin squinted slightly, frowning in puzzlement. Then his brow cleared. "Why not?" he asked, smiling once more. "Does that one have a tail, Nat?"

    "Of course," the youngest boy confirmed. "And great big teeth. He hasn't got wings, 'though."

    "She," protested Kurtas. "Fairies are girls. Everyone knows that."

    "I thought you said fairies did not exist?" Barin pointed out. "If Nat wants his fairy to be male and have big teeth and a tail, then that is okay with me." He looked back towards Yaddle again, squinting as if he had forgotten something. Then he shrugged and changed the subjec
  15. mouse2 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 1999
    star 4
    *sigh*

    I love that story. :) I love that Barin stood up for Nat no matter what his friends may have to say about the matter.

    And Nat was right all along! From a certain point of view. ;)
  16. Healer_Leona Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2000
    star 9
    I agree Mouse, I love seeing the characters as children... who innocent most were yet... *sigh*
  17. PadawanKitara Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 31, 2001
    star 5
    force fairy- I don't remember that one
  18. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    Mouse - They really make one think.

    Thanks for the compliment Mouse! That's what I normally entend to do in most of these, either make you think or make you laugh :) I love HaiGan's stuff because it really makes you think....just as you feel you know one character she snatches them away and transforms them and you kick yourself that you didn't see it coming earlier!

    Miana Kenobi

    It isn't mine, [face_embarrased] it's HaiGans! I can't write as well as that, I wish I could. Since we borrow each others characters and that these flow so well into each other, I thought they should be posted together.

    Lady Padme -It really does seem like such an innocent time.

    All I can say is - keep reading!

    Mouse

    Yep, that's one of my favourites too!

    Leona

    Yeah, they might be nice now, but if you look closely you can just begin to see the seeds of darkness germinating.

    PadawanKitara

    It was hidden away in Hells Chance :)


    *

    Thank you for reading all of these so far :) There about about another two young kid snapshots to go before we start getting into the teenage years....*gulp*

    Kithera

  19. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    PRACTICE

    BY HAI GAN

    ***

    "Come on, Xan, you can do it!" Barin grinned down at his friend, then turned two cartwheels along the high practice wall that marched almost half the width of the end of the training-room, and finished with a roundoff. "See? Easy!"

    Xanatos still looked dubious. The thin line of grip-finished firmaplas looked awfully high. He might fall off, and then he'd look stupid.

    Barin somersaulted into the air and landed neatly beside the younger boy. "You /can/ do it. I saw you earlier!"

    Xanatos obviously had his doubts. He frowned at Barin from beneath his dark fringe. "That was on the low wall." He pointed an illustrative finger at the second training wall, its top barely reaching the younger boy's waist.

    "Then you can do it on the high wall as well."

    "That's different."

    Barin gave another of his sunshine smiles. "Only because you think it is. It is exactly the same sort of wall. It is just in a different place. You can /pretend/ that you are still on the low wall."

    "But I might fall off!"

    Barin clambered up onto the high wall again, stood up, and promptly tipped sideways to land spread-eagled on the mat. He squinted back at Xanatos, upside-down. "Why worry about that? It only hurts if you think it is going to."

    Xanatos glanced sideways at the other initiates in the class and instructors dotted about the gym among them.

    Barin blinked, then got back up. "Nobody is watching you, Xan," he said, sympathetically. "Nobody would mind if you fell off anyway. Everybody makes mistakes when they are learning."

    "That's okay for you," Xanatos grumbled, sulkily. "You're good at this."

    "You just need to practice, and then you will be good at it as well," Barin urged. "Try it!"

    "'Do or do not,'" quoted Xanatos, wiggling his hands like ears at the side of his head.

    Barin laughed. "Do, then. Come on. Just imagine you are down on the low wall. You are good at pretending. I will be right here to help you."

    "You'll be down there and /I'll/ be up there. What help will that be?"

    "I can help you pretend. You are bold Lord Telesian, remember? Even when he fell off his gantauren-"

    "He was knocked from his gantauren!"

    "Yes, but he did not let that stop him. He fought on bravely until he won the fight. /You/ are Lord Telesian, and /that/ is your steadfast steed," Barin made a sweeping gesture towards the wall. A faint, distant smile hovered about his lips, the smile that always appeared when he launched into one of his flights of fancy. "And it matters not how many times you fall, for if you are brave and true then you will prevail."

    Still reluctant, Xanatos clambered onto the thin length of the practice wall.

    "Just the same as on the low one," Barin told him. "No different at all. And remember Lord Telesian!"

    Xanatos checked about once again, just to confirm that Barin was right and nobody was watching. There was only one of the instructors looking in their direction, hopefully just keeping an eye on them to make sure they were okay. And Barin, of course, but he didn't count. Trying to remember the other wall, the one with the top so much closer to the ground- and Lord Telesian, of course- Xanatos took a deep breath and tried a cartwheel.

    "See? Easy!" Barin called.

    Xanatos walked back to the end of the wall. Two cartwheels.

    Barin's grin was plastered right across his face.

    Xanatos walked back to the end again. One cartwheel. Two. Roundoff. Jump and somersault. Hit the mat feet-first, Barin's hands steadying him as he landed, Barin laughing and congratulating him. Xanatos grinned back. He had done it.

    Excitedly now, the younger initiate climbed back onto the wall and waved to the room. "Hey! Look what I can do!" Heads turned towards him and he flung himself along the top, full of confidence now that he knew he could manage it, around and around and tumbling into the air at the end to land beaming at his audience. "See? All by myself!"

    Behind his friend, Barin joined in the short burst of encouraging applause. X
  20. Miana Kenobi Admin Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Apr 5, 2000
    star 8
    Aww, cute! :) Excellent job!
  21. dianethx Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 2002
    star 6
    It was cute except for the all by myself remark. But then that's Xan for you.
  22. mouse2 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 1999
    star 4
    It's little things that you catch that make you wish if only. Barin worked so hard in helping his friend boosting his confidence, but then Xan does it 'all by himself'.

    Poor Barin. He never had a chance. :(
  23. PadawanKitara Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 31, 2001
    star 5
    I stuck my head into the Cantina a few months ago, but there wasn't time to do more than sample a bit here and there
  24. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    Kitara: The Cantina is a bit like that - there is just too many good fics to read :)

    Mouse2: Yeah, there is an if only post somewhere in the snapshot thread, but it's hidden deep away.

    Dianethx: Yep...that's our Xan :)

    Miana: On behalf of Qui-gon, Thanks :)

  25. Kit' Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 5
    Second last "child" one.

    ***

    DECISIONS

    BY HAI GAN

    ****

    "Dexie!" said Nat, peeping through the gap between the guard-rail and the solid base of the balcony wall.

    "No, Qui-Gon Jinn!" said Juli, not needing to crane her neck. She had managed to secure a place on the bottom step of the access way, instead of having to crowd in at the feet of the front-row spectators. The observation tier was packed for the bi-annual Knights' Lightsaber Challenges. The initiates who were old enough to attend had to squeeze in wherever they could.

    "/No/, Lerrek Vaarn," said Xanatos, carefully studying the Challengers through half-closed eyes.

    "What about Mace Windu?" suggested Barin. The others glanced at one another.

    "Baldy Windy? Nah!" they chorussed.

    "Jinn won it four years ago," Barin pointed out.

    "Vaarn won it last time," said Xanatos.

    Barin considered this. "Jinn was not competing last time."

    "Dexie!" said Nat again, stubbornly.

    "Why /him/?" asked Juli, looking down her nose at the brown-haired and disgracefully good-looking little urchin.

    "'Cos Nana Evla says I've got Dex Appeal," Nat grinned.

    "If we keep watching then all will be revealed," declared Barin, the eldest of them, having spotted Master Yoda shuffling out into the middle of the room to begin proceedings. "Time to keep quiet."

    Some time later, Barin nudged Nat awake. The boy had fallen asleep with his head on Barin's shoulder. "Your favorite is on," Barin whispered. "If he wins this duel then he is through to the final fight."

    Xanatos stirred, lifting his head from where it rested on his folded arms against the wall of the balcony, and rubbed his eyes. "Who's he fighting? Oh, Vaarn."

    "He's got no chance then," said Juli, just to tease Nat. The boy was always annoying her. She saw no reason not to get back at him whenever she could.

    "Dexie!" Nat insisted, sleepily as well as stubbornly.

    All four initiates watched as the two men stepped out into the center of the room. The youthful, golden-haired Corellian blew kisses into the crowd, gaining whistles from the more appreciative females and bowing to them in return. The tall, dignified Twi-Lek bowed once to Master Yoda, and again to his opponent. He lifted a hand and inclined his head to acknowledge his own supporters, then stood quietly waiting. There were more whistles as Dex saluted Lerrek, activated his lightsaber, and waved the Twi-Lek forwards.

    "Not Dexie," Nat whispered sadly as the Corellian went down fighting like a circus act. Dex bounced back onto his feet after the kill point against him, twirling and bowing to the crowd even in defeat. Vaarn bowed and murmured a few words to him, then moved out of the way ready for the next pair.

    "Mace Windu and Qui-Gon Jinn," said Barin.

    "No contest," Xanatos snorted, and was soon proved correct as Qui-Gon rather appologetically wiped the floor with his friend. Mace had his revenge as he defeated Dex to take third place. Dex made a comment about having to save his energy for the after-contest party, which drew several ribald remarks from the audience and shocked glares from most of the older Masters.

    "Windy," decided Nat. "Not Dexie."

    Juli looked at the boy as if he'd suddenly turned into a Hutt. "Ew!"

    "/Now/ we shall see, Master Jinn or Knight Vaarn," Barin said, shuffling forwards to get an even better look at the final duel.

    "Have they got padawans?" Xanatos asked, carefully casual.

    Barin grinned at him. "Looking for the best Master?" he asked.

    Xanatos looked mildly aggrieved at being found out, then shrugged. "Why shouldn't I want to have the best Master? I want to be the best Jedi."

    "Being a Jedi is not a competition, Xan," Barin told him with amusement. "It is not about beating other people."

    "I want to be the best knight," Xanatos said quietly. "Like Lord Telesian. I'll be the best, and they'll all follow me into battle to bring peace, and I'll be wise and just and everyone will come to me for advice."

    Barin coughed. "Xan, that is only a game
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