Beyond Measure of Merit - Diary of a Shadow Child - 2012 DD Challenge - updated 2/26

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by LexiLupin, Jan 1, 2012.

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  1. LexiLupin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 27, 2011
    star 4
    A/N: NOTE! that the first several entries can be found on pg 2 in their properly formatted/not-truncated state.

    Happy 2012 and welcome to my Dear Diary Challenge thread. Because I'm totally crazy, I decided to write a diary for a canon character who we never actually see in canon literature, and about whom we know next to nothing. And what we do know is often riddled with inconsistencies and contradictions, especially pertaining to the other Fel children, so I had to do my best when formulating the general scheme for the year of Cem's diary.
    Setting: 21 ABY
    Characters: Fels; note that all six Fel children are alive as of entry 1.
    Genre: Drama, some family-based angst/tension/frustration



    Measure of Merit ? Diary of a Shadow Child

    Entry 1

    My name is Cem Fel. I am sixteen years old, the third of six children. I have two older brothers, one younger brother, and two younger sisters. They are a well-behaved bunch who do their duty by our father and by our sworn fealty to Syndic Mitth?raw?nuruodo?s Household Phalanx. They are a well-behaved bunch and I?

    I am a problem child.

    Only? I am not a child. In the eyes of the chiss amongst whom we live, only my youngest sister, at the tender age of six standard years, would yet be considered juvenile. In the eyes of the chiss, I am not a child, but what do you call someone who has no particular future prospects, lives at home, and relies on his parents for the basic comforts of life?

    I have few delusions regarding the tension I have created in my family- between my parents, among my siblings- but I?ve never considered my qualms to be unreasonable. My younger brother wants a commission to the training academy; my youngest sister wants dolls, and ribbons for her hair.

    I want simple acknowledgement.

    My father is a stern man and violent by professional necessity but not, I think, by nature. I?ve never seen him raise a hand against any of my brothers or sisters, and I firmly believe he would die before he raised so much as his voice to my mother. Were he to discover this datacard though, I would not be surprised should he subject me to the first beating of my life. Not for the content, at-times critical though it may be? but rather, for the lie it would reveal, should it fall into the hands of any outside my family.

    Because, you see- there is no Cem Fel. And yet?

    My name is Cem Fel.

    I am a shadow child.

    I do not exist.
    Last edited by LexiLupin, Feb 25, 2013
  2. Jedi_Lover Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    Interesting beginning. I look forward to reading more.
  3. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    I am a shadow child.

    I do not exist.


    Chilling but so good. :D

    I can't even begin to imagine what life would be life for Cem, especially at that age. Really looking forward to more!

    =D=
  4. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    What a very intriguing choice for a character-focus Lexi! =D= And a very compelling title and self-perception :( for Cem to have. [face_thinking]

    If you're making a PM list, I'd love on it.

    [face_batting]

    Totally fangirl digression [face_laugh] Ah! To be in Jag's shadow [face_mischief]

    LOL
  5. earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    Shadow child interesting beginning and to read:)
  6. LoriLynn Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2011
    star 1
    Dun dun dunnn!! :D

    I will always be amazed by your ability to put forth such a strong narrative in a few hundred words.

    I'm onboard, let's see where this 'diary of the child that never existed' goes.
  7. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    I always wondered about Cem. I'm very glad to see something about him.

    Great start!
  8. LexiLupin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 27, 2011
    star 4
    A/N: Big thanks to everyone who read and commented on Entry 1. [:D] I was quite pleasantly surprised to see some Cem interest out there, for a character who we never meet.
    But I'm still holding on to some hope that Cem Fel will make an epic intro into the EU in Apocalypse in March. I can dream, anyway. :p

    PM List
    Jade_eyes

    And onward:


    [Prompt: Delete?]

    [Enter command: Yes]

    [Prompt: Please confirm; all data will be lost]

    ?
    ?
    ?
    ?
    ?

    [Enter command: Abort]

    Entry 2

    Our parents like to note our birthdays on the Coruscanti calendar. This is the one strange aspect to which they have clung to their past lives.

    I say their past lives- my eldest brother was not yet four when we relocated to Nirauan, Chak was barely two, I was not a year of age. A Coruscanti year; a Galactic Standard year. Both of our parents are rooted on Corellia, yet never display an interest towards a Corellian anything. Perhaps they?ve both seen too much beyond their homeworld, in their own way, to hold to something so quaint.

    The story has it that my mother discovered she was pregnant with me the same day she learned that my father defected to Rogue Squadron, to the Rebel Alliance, to the New Republic. It was five months before she saw my father again, before she was reunited with a brother she?d not seen since his childhood. And at six months pregnant, she concealed her condition, just as she concealed the existence of Davin and Chak, lest they be used as pawns in the game of civil war, of galactic strife.

    Seven months later, the agents of the Empire proved their worth and caught up with us but not, as it were, for the purposes my father feared. We were turned over to Grand Admiral Thrawn, Syndic Mitth?raw?nuruodo, my father soon followed- and sixteen years later, the Fels are like a myth in the known galaxy: the Imperial ace married to the famous holostar- it?s the stuff of fairy tales.

    Fairy tales often end tragically.

    The tragedy of my parents? story is a fabrication, and it was my father?s fear that the illusion was shattered two years ago when outsiders were lured to the fortress which we call home. It has been two years though, and the New Republic has not come crashing down on our heads, my mother?s brother has not turned up to demand after her, so perhaps father underestimated the honor of the visitors.

    I once asked about them- why were they here, in our isolated alcove of the galaxy? Father?s jaw tensed up, his lips tightened into a thin line, and he told me to go look after young Wynssa. It is a reaction I?ve seen from him before, when a military operation goes poorly, when the objectives are not achieved, or when the costs outweigh the benefits.

    I sense that all three were the case in the fiasco of two years ago.

    Davin revealed more than father, intimated in me and Jagged, all of twelve at the time, the damage that the fortress had suffered at the hands of the visitors- visitors who, according to my eldest brother, possessed strange and mystical powers, carried blades made of pure energy, destroyed an entire hangar and trapped a whole wing of clawcraft fighters.

    Two people. They must have been fearsome warriors, I wonder that father could have underestimated them at all.

    Perhaps someone, somewhere, sees them as heroes. Mother?s brother is a hero of the Rebellion, and it was Davin who found himself enamored of the tales of fighting against all reasonable odds, of taking down impressive foes, conquering the forces of evil?

    Father stopped talking about Wedge Antilles by the time Jagged and I were of a suitable age for such stories; he bade mother to avoid the subject as well. But Davin, inexplicably proud of an uncle he has never known and never will, relayed to us the romantic tales of those glory days, the tragedy of our mother, seeing her husband on one side of the war and her brother on the other.

    Jagged is named for his maternal grandfather, it is fitting that he woul
  9. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Enjoyed the reflections on the other Fels. =D=

    Cem needs to find a niche and a place/purpose that isn't dominated by cosmic choices :p or tragedies [face_thinking]

  10. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    That first part...I really liked that. Whether or not to keep the entry. He seems to be very careful what he puts into words, no doubt wondering if his written word might fall into the wrong hands.

    I have to wonder though, as a shadow child...Cem will need some kind of training, right? He's the back up plan when the entire family falls.

    I liked how you incorporated Luke and Mara, by the way.

    Because I am a shadow child, and I do not exist.

    This just makes me want to hug the poor kid. :(

    Still, awesome update.

    Looking forward to more.

    =D=
  11. Mondra Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 12, 2010
    star 1
    This is a very intriguing beginning, and I'd like to read more! Please put me on the PM list. :)
  12. TrakNar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 4, 2011
    star 5
    Hm... Perhaps it's the more clinical mindset that I'm in, due to the fact that I had been doing some more psychology research (currently have a copy of the DSM-IV in my possession), but this diary intrigues me. Poor Cem would do well with some one-on-one counseling. Add me to the PM list, please?
  13. LexiLupin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 27, 2011
    star 4
    PM List
    Jade_eyes
    Mondra
    TrakNar


    A/N: Ceillean: I have to wonder though, as a shadow child...Cem will need some kind of training, right?
    Good point. Cem shall attempt to better explain himself on that topic shortly - :p



    Entry 3

    For all the dullness of life that being a family?s shadow child entails, it is, supposedly, something of an honor. Granted, that honor was likely much greater at a time when the high families of the Chiss Ascendancy feuded, struck one another from power? and yes, sometimes targeted each other for assassination.

    We are not chiss.

    We do not live in the Ascendancy.

    The Empire of the Hand is guided by military rule, not aristocrats. There are no families to feud with the Fels, as the Fels themselves are not in power. My father is, yes. General Soontir Fel, baron of the old Empire, second-in-command only to Admiral Voss Parck. The third member of the triumvirate of power, since the departure of Mitth?raw?nuruodo, is Commander Kres?ten?tarthi, a chiss who is oftentimes at odds with my father.

    Parck is, incidentally, the only being on Nirauan with whom I have semi-regular contact aside from my own family. Probably because he was the one who initiated my father into the Hand, and hiding a four-month-old infant would have been tricky at best. Not that my parents were any strangers to the difficulties of hiding their children. None knew of Davin and Chak, save father?s closest family on Corellia; my mother went into hiding long before any of them could have known she was pregnant with me.

    Which made me, such as it is, the logical choice for shadow child, for the one who must continue to be hidden. It is considered an honor by some; all who have sworn fealty to the Hand would consider my circumstances to be an even greater honor because of how I came to fall into the role as an infant: it was at the suggestion of Mitth?raw?nuruodo himself.

    I hate him.

    Perhaps he had a reason for it- what possible use could my family have for a shadow child?- if so, the reason died with him twelve years ago. But I was barely five years old and my father did not relent on the decision, and hidden I have remained ever since. I have watched my elder brothers depart for their respective military training academies, I stay behind when Jagged and Cherith attend strict lessons with stoic chiss several years their junior.

    I still learn it all of course; as father put it during one of my younger periods of stubborn sulking, it would quite defeat the purpose were I to learn none of the skills that would help me survive and navigate this foreign culture, should the family fall. But while Jagged and Cherith are commended for excelling at their studies, their combat training- it is simply expected of me, no more, no less. If I do not learn obscure histories of a race I have never technically met, I am a failure; if I learn them to perfection, I am simply performing as expected.

    But while I can live a simulation of a life here, on Nirauan- I will never escape, as Chak and Davin have done- as Jagged hopes to do sooner than he lets on, I think. And while I can learn the basics beyond the academic and technical studies- weapons handling, hand-to-hand combat- the one thing I will never be able to do, while living as a ghost, is pilot a Clawcraft.

    The training academy is not for shadow children who do not exist.
  14. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Nice to get further explanations of Cem's existence combined with how it began and how he's supposed :p to feel about it. [face_thinking]

  15. Jedi_Lover Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    Very interesting update. I feel sorry for the shadow child.
  16. earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    Interesting updates and difficult for him to be denied so many things
  17. Mondra Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 12, 2010
    star 1
    He sounds really frustrated... But I can understand. Great job on this story!
  18. TrakNar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 4, 2011
    star 5
    I gotta agree with Cem on one thing... I hate Thrawn, too. :p
  19. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    *gasp* What? How..now..you...wait! You can't! You can't hate Thrawn! :p The man's a genius.

    Wonderful update, Lexi! Still want to jump into the story and hug the poor kid. I bet he'll have a few good days along the way. Maybe. But...we're dealing with Chiss so...
    Even though he won't be able to fly a Clawcraft like his brothers, he'll get to do other stuff.

    =D=
  20. LexiLupin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 27, 2011
    star 4
    A/N: A short little entry here- and the emergence of a bit of a story, finally. :p Enjoy-


    Entry 4

    I seem to possess greater foresight than I ever suspected. Which is, I suppose, good, as it lessened the blow upon delivery.

    The terse nervousness in the eyes of my younger brother- my younger brother who is rarely terse and never nervous, practically to the point of folly- first alerted me that his news was of a sort I would find? unappealing. But he said he wanted to tell me first. Jagged is not oblivious, he knows how little merit I will still find in this place when he is gone.

    And at the age of fourteen, he confessed to me his intentions of requesting an appointment from father to attend Davin?s old training academy.

    I did see it coming, but hoped futilely that I might yet have another year with my younger brother. Cherith, barely thirteen, will undoubtedly stay around another year or two- regardless of how long until she leaves, Wynssa will be devastated when she does. But Cherith is yet a child in some ways, is only just beginning to fall into the mold which Jagged has been striving to fit for months now. There is great pressure on them- as there was on Chak and Davin before- to shirk their inherent human weaknesses, to become chiss, to deny emotions and learn to respond to one thing and one thing only: duty.

    Jagged is a somewhat brash sort- as Davin was, at his age. But he has generally excelled- for a human- at his studies and training exercises. I suspect that suddenly finding himself at a chiss-run training academy will be something of a rude awakening for the youngest Fel son, but perhaps that is what he needs. Even here, surrounded by chiss, he is still under the watch and protection of the humans- Admiral Parck and General Fel- who command us all. Among chiss pilots though- trained by chiss, reprimanded by chiss? probably led by chiss who are younger than he- it might stamp out some of that latent hero-worship which quietly irks father, but which Davin never really lost.

    Then again- father could always say no.
  21. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Enjoyed the insights and reflections of Cem on Jag. Has a rapture-fit over Jag's formidable exterior being stripped away by Jaina, eventually LOL [face_mischief]

  22. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    I really enjoy Clem's views of his siblings. :)
  23. Jedi_Lover Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    Very interesting post. I always liked Jag as a character. It is interesting to hear about him as a youth.
  24. TrakNar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 4, 2011
    star 5
    Nice to see that the kid isn't totally forgotten. And, he has some gumption! Gumption is always a good quality to have.
  25. earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    love these observations of her

    a nice update
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