Saga Religion of Rogues (post-AotC/Tatooine/OCs) COMPLETED 9/28/04

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Winged_Jedi, Dec 6, 2003.

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  1. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    What happens if you mix Tatooine, mercenaries, rivalries, crime lords, conmen and a few cunning old soldiers together? This story, that's what. Anyway, everything in this story was created by George Lucas and belong to him, except for the Original Characters (which is most of them), who are my creations.

    Religion of Rogues

    Chapter 1: Landing

    "I told you, Kalan, I said it five times! I don't know?"

    "Look, it wasn't just me in that ship. There was this other guy there who couldn't hit a target even if it had a big luminous sign saying 'shoot me'. Now, who was that idiot again? Oh yeah, that was you."

    "Gee, you got me in stitches."

    " Look, Nerival, for now, let's just try and get through this blasted desert."

    The two men exchanged cold looks before striding on in silence. A harsh wind blew across the deserts of Tatooine on that day, scratching at their cheeks and whipping sand grains into their faces. They walked on though with little complaint, though the heat exhausted them quickly. It tired all newcomers quickly.

    The desert stretched for miles into the distance, the endless landscape of sand only interrupted by one large vehicle, wandering the dunes, known as a Sandcrawler to most, home to the scavengers known as Jawas. The sandcrawler came upon the wreckage of the Lunar Wing hours after the two men had left it. The Jawas had taken what they needed and what they could sell, but there wasn't much left, and even the scavengers with their limited knowledge of space warfare, could see that this ship had taken many attacks. Too many.

    Captain Kalan Coral and Corporal Nerival had left Coruscant in the Lunar Wing just days before, minds full of hope for the future as adventure and uncertainty once again lay ahead of them. But after too long thinking their hearts had become weighted with despair and misery as the grim truth hit them: they were finished.

    Kalan was tallish, dark haired and scruffy. He always seemed to be unshaven. He had been quite the scoundrel in his younger days, but now behind his old blue eyes there was only a weary world of sorrow. His friend Nerival was decked out in dark blue, as he always was. His curly blond hair framed his once handsome face. He was a quiet man, and always seemed to follow Kalan around, though he was a capable fighter himself.

    For they had been Republic soldiers, your average infantrymen, waiting for their chance to make their mark in history. Until the Clone War started. With news of increasing tensions between Separatists and the Republic, it became more and more clear to the aging soldiers that their time to become glorious heroes of the Republic was at hand. But then came the nasty rumours spreading like wildfire through the barracks. That those plans for a clone army of the Republic, previously seen as ludicrous, might actually come to pass. That all non-clone soldiers would be put out of a job.

    Even as war broke out, and it became obvious that the clones were the new army of the Republic, Kalan, Nerival and their fellow soldiers clung on to fading hope, that despite the clones, they would be able to hold a place in the army. But one by one, they realised that the Republic had no need to continue to employ aging would be heroes when they had a seemingly limitless supply of obedient, efficient clones at their command.

    And so Nerival and Kalan left the military before they were thrown out, and set off to try and make their fortune, to explore the galaxy, as they had wanted to when they were young. But they weren't young anymore, they realised, their lives had gone by and their future held nothing but bitter, lonely retirement.

    In space, miserable and not knowing where to go, they decided to head to see Kalan's brothers and sisters on Naboo. He had not talked to them for ten years. It was then that they were attacked by pirates, rogues looking to cash in on the fact that so many Republic forces were involved with the war, no one cared about petty piracy anymore. The pair of old soldiers had never been pilots, and their ship
  2. Knight-Ander Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 2002
    star 4
    Not too bad for a first fic, Winged Jedi. :)

    I like the interaction between Kalan and Nerival, the way the dialogue sounds so natural, and the way you're introducing familiar characters into the mix.

    Can't wait to see if Kalan and Nerival decide to take a job for Jabba.

    Well done. :D
  3. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    Thanks, Knight-Ander! :D

    I'm just finishing Chapter 3 and then onto 4 where the story gets really interesting. What do you you think I need to improve upon?
  4. Keeper_of_Swords Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 20, 2003
    star 5
    Ho! I love Tatooine culture so I enjoyed reading this.

    cool slug joke.

    Question: Are there going to be Kyrt dragons?
  5. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    It's a strange thing that you should ask that, my friend... ;)
  6. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    Here's Chapter 3 at last. Hope I can get some more readers.

    Chapter 3: Simeon

    Kalan and Nerival looked at each other for a moment before turning back to the alien.

    "You'll give us a speeder? Can you give us it now?" asked Nerival, blinking in the bright sunlight.

    "Ah?well, no, no, heh heh. First, you give me some money," said Watto, grinning again.

    "To buy some breath mints, I assume," muttered Kalan. Nerival chuckled.

    "What?" grunted Watto.

    "Nothing, nothing. Perhaps you can show us this speeder?then we'll discuss a price. Only once we've seen it we'll talk money."

    "Okay, okay. I'll show you."

    Watto flew off behind his stall, the flies pursuing him. Kalan glanced at Nerival before following the Toydorian. It was still too hot for the pair, and they were glad when Watto seemed to be leading them to inside a small, old, worn out shop near the stall.

    "He looks a bit?dishonest to me, Kalan," said Nerival quietly.

    "That's because he is dishonest."

    "I suppose we should expect that out here. But you remember that time?"

    "That we were out on that mission and the Bothan sold us that case of faulty thermal detonators? I remember all right."

    "You remember we looked like idiots in the enemy camp throwing them and then ducking for cover, just as they failed to explode."

    "Yes. It was just lucky the reinforcements arrived to come help us out."

    "?You do know what I'm getting at here."

    "Look, Nerival, we've just got to trust the guy that the speeder's not dodgy. We've got no other option."

    "?And we'll pay him the usual way, I assume?"

    "But of course."

    "Hmm, what's a that you say? Pay me now?" said a voice.

    They were in the shop now, and Watto had flown over to them, seeming desperate for the money. It was obvious why. The shop, if that's what it was, was a wreck. There were damaged and destroyed pieces of junk everywhere, the whole place looked like a bomb had hit it and food rotted in the corners. The only thing that looked in any decent condition was the speeder. The speeder sat mostly in the shop, with the end just poking out the shop's back door. It looked as if wasn't too worn, and seemed to be able to seat two people. It was green with blue markings on it and had a faded skull on the back. Kalan and Nerival gave it a close inspection. They knew a fair bit about these vehicles, as such information had come in useful during their time in the army. Speeders and the like were often the vehicles of the enemy, on many campaigns, especially if the enemy were pirates or alliances of thugs.

    Once the vehicle seemed satisfactory to them, they turned to Watto.

    "Well, it looks to be in good enough shape. So now, how about we agree on payment. " said Kalan, folding his arms.

    "Yes, yes," said Watto, who was rubbing his hands greedily. He was so preoccupied he didn't notice Nerival closing the shop door behind him.
    "So, a price?.well, how mucha do you have? Maybe you have something of value, eh?"

    "We've got these," said Nerival. Watto turned around, showing all his teeth in another wide grin.

    "What are-" Watto started. His grin faded. Nerival had a blaster pointed straight between his eyes. The alien's face twisted into an expression of anger, and then, of fear.

    "You can't-" Watto began, as Kalan stepped smartly into his view with another blaster in hand.

    "Oh, I think you'll find we can," said Nerival softly.

    "We'll be taking this speeder," smiled Kalan. "I get the feeling you'll give it to us free of charge."

    "I-I-you," Watto stammered. "You won't get away with this! I have friends!"

    "No, Watto," replied Kalan. "You have bad breath, a swarm of flies, and a dirt mound for a stall. So I get the feeling you won't have many friends."

    With that, Kalan and Nerival left the Toydorian stuttering and after Nerival quickly opened the shop door again, they jumped in the speeder, blasters still ready and pointed at Watto.

    "Keycard please," said Kalan. Watto flew over, grunting several different curses, and handed a shiny keycard to Kalan, who
  7. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    Chapter 4's coming soon, probably in a week or two. Hopefully I can get some readers by then.
  8. Knight-Ander Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 2002
    star 4
    Sorry, I've been meaning to respond to this latest post, but I've been very busy with Darth Real Life. :)

    Poor Watto. He has had much luck since losing Anakin in that pod-race so long ago, has he. ;) Our heroes didn't treat him very nicely, but I guess it could be said that he got back at them by making sure the speeder would break down.

    Nice tension in that scene with the Tusken attack. Kalan and Nerival reminded me of Butch and Sundance for a moment. Lucky that Simeon came along.

    I'm glad we met Simeon, otherwise we wouldn't know what we're doing. Nice guy."

    "I don't know," replied Kalan, his eyes narrowing. "Something seemed shifty about him. Sure, he saved our lives?but there was something just not right about him."

    Yes, he was an interesting character, but I agree with Kalan that he seemed to be a bit of a shifty fellow.

    "The Corival Mercenaries will be born in this bar. This could be the start of something big," said Kalan to Nerival.

    "And if it's not?" asked Nerival.

    "Then we'll be stuck on this planet a very long time."

    I like the idea of the Corival Mercenaries. Here's hoping their venture is a successful one. :)
  9. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    Chapter 4: The Corival Mercenaries

    "It's too hot today, Nerival," moaned Kalan, wiping his forehead.

    "What are you talking about? It's always this hot."

    "I mean, it's too hot for us to do this job."

    "I really don't think the weather's going to make a difference for this job, Kalan."
    Kalan just nodded and wiped his forehead once again. He told himself it was just the heat, but he knew it was more than that. He had got used to the scorching suns of Tatooine these past three months, so it must be the nerves- and the fear- that were making him sweat.

    But that was surely only natural. It was good to have some fear. If you weren't scared even a little when you were about to kill a Krayt Dragon, then something was wrong with you.

    Kalan lifted his hand to shade his eyes from the sun and looked at his group. There were seven in total, including himself and Nerival. Four stood at the mouth of the desert cave, though Thermo and Jace stood much further away and Reanna was even further in the distance. Kalan knew Thermo was there because he was still getting the explosives ready, and Reanna was luring the banthas, but Jace had no reason to stand so far back apart from fear. Kalan hoped the young human wasn't too scared. He shouldn?t be. He was a mercenary, after all.

    It hadn't taken Kalan and Nerival too long to get their band of mercenaries together. At first most people had just laughed at them as wannabes who would never make it. But they had found that there were too many pirates, smugglers and thugs without work on Tatooine, and most of them would welcome a job as a mercenary. Kalan and Nerival had found a surprising amount of interested people in The Selonian Smuggler, though it had later it turned out that many of them were, as Kalan put it- "about as skilled with weaponry as a blind one legged womp rat". Despite that, there were a good number who had potential as mercenaries.

    After they had seen who might be really be interested, Kalan and Nerival had managed to actually sign up and employ three people, and so the Corival Mercenaries had begun. Together, they had come up with the money to buy three very small rooms in a yellowing, almost abandoned building in Central East Anchorhead. Two of the rooms were used for Kalan and Nerival to sleep and eat, and the other, main room, was, after much work and re decorating, made into what could pass as their Mercenary Headquarters. It had two desks, one for Kalan, one for Nerival, a filing cabinet and they'd even managed to get a second hand dejarik table for a game whenever there was free time. They stuck a hastily drawn sign on the door, handed out business cards printed on what was practically toilet paper and looked for work wherever they could find it. At first, they had gone on a few very small, poorly paid jobs for various employers. It had been simple stuff, like taking on bouncer jobs for some of the rougher cantina, and their third job was a complete farce.

    Two jizzwailers, Slutebo Kris and Fara Fnolooty, had come to Tatooine, after leaving their war torn world on the Outer Rim. They had come to the Headquarters, looking for bodyguards. They claimed to have experience singing at the most luxurious cantinas in the galaxy. They had a gig in the Smiling Rodian cantina in Mos Eisley and apparently needed protection or face being mobbed by their adoring fans. They offered five hundred credits, which was a lot more than what had been coming in so far, and Kalan took the job himself. It was a decision he regretted. They went to the wrong place to begin with, to a different cantina where Slutebo nevertheless had a few drinks of juri juice. After discovering to his great surprise that the bartender had never heard of him and Fara, he flatly refused to pay, which left an irritated Kalan paying the bill. Eventually they found the Smiling Rodian between a junkyard and an orange seller's stall. They parked their speeder right outside it, ready to give their performance, only to be greeted by a moody Zabrak who explained that the cantina had shut down
  10. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    Phew! That was long chapter, but hpefully a good one. ;)

    "Chapter Five: Death and the Dug" coming soon...
  11. Ornen Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Feb 22, 2003
    star 4
    I just started reading this. What I read was pretty good, but I have to go now. I'm not too far, but I'll read more later. Expect a more detalied review tomorrow.
  12. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    Chapter 5 about half way through, I'm trying to get it finished before my exams start at school. I look forward to your review so far, Ornen. :)

    And I forgot to say thanks last time, Knight-Ander, for your comments again. :)
  13. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    I've just started Chapter 6, which is called Truth and Betrayal. But for now, here's Chapter 5.

    Chapter 5: Death and the Dug

    Three months had passed since the Krayt Dragon had been killed and Simeon had been recruited into the Corival Mercenaries, and the time had passed slowly, or so it seemed to Kalan. In total it had been six months since he and Nerival first set foot on Tatooine, and that felt like an eternity ago. He could not have dreamed back then that half a year later, he would be in charge of the fastest growing Mercenary company on the planet.

    Since they had killed the Dragon on that day in the Dune Seas, things had just got better for the business, as Kalan predicted it would. Just a few days afterwards, the rumours were floating around Anchorhead of a band of mercs who killed a Krayt Dragon. A group of elite soldiers who could handle any job. Fearless warriors who would take on the most dangerous of tasks. With rumours like that spreading around, the money came streaming in. They were suddenly approached by the biggest smugglers, the richest nobles and the most powerful spies to do mercenary work.

    Hiring Simeon had turned out to be a very good decision. The red haired man had become a natural leader on many of the missions, and had a proficiency with most weapons that was incredibly useful. Anything from a sniper rifle to a blaster cannon, Simeon could handle it. Not only that, he had a silver tongue that meant he could talk them out of any sticky situation. Lanett did the accounts, and she figured that Simeon had earned the Corival Mercenaries at least twenty thousand credits since being employed. He mixed in very well, and he had won everyone in the group over with his charming smile and generous nature. The only person who disliked him a little was Kalan, but even he had now learned to trust him.

    The jobs had just been getting bigger, and the payments grew larger along with it. A Bothan named Dreyl'lis had paid them twenty thousand credits a week ago to sabotage an electrical factory owned by a rival of his. Thermo and Reanna had handled that one themselves. A month ago, a group of nobles had hired them to trap some thieves who had stolen up to half a million credits worth of jewels, antiques and even a few droids. Nerival, Simeon, Major and Lanett had taken that one, trapping the thieves in a cleverly designed mine field. That job had paid particularly well, one hundred thousand credits. And then there had been the drunken Gamorrean, who had single handedly destroyed a speeder workshop and a cantina before going on a rampage, at which point, Kalan and Jace, who had been in a nearby weapons shop a the time, apprehended him and were paid a tidy sum for their alertness.

    All this money had certainly improved the business. Every one of the mercenaries had their own suit of durasteel armour, they had expanded the office, building three extension rooms, a leisure room (the dejarik table had been moved in there, and a pool table and a holonet broadcaster were also there), a meeting room for mission briefings and an armoury, where they had an extensive selection of weaponry, including light repeating blasters, rocket launchers, ion rifles, and of course, Thermo's thermal detonators. They even had a whole new high tech filing system now for their clients.

    It was an unspoken ambition of Kalan to get a ship for the Mercenaries, but not for the reasons he might have wanted one half a year earlier. Once a ship would have been his passage off the planet, but that was no longer something that even crossed his mind. He and Nerival had made a home on Tatooine, and they had no plans of leaving for now. No, the ship was for missions that might take them off Tatooine. And anyway, it looked good for the business to have its own ship. Kalan smiled widely at the thought that one day the Corival Mercenaries could be a galaxywide company.

    They'd had their eyes on a very nice Corellian Freighter called The Flare Centurion. It's current owner, an old Rodian smuggler named Salsa Krono, had put it
  14. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    Chapter Six may or may not be coming soon, depending if my readers return and maybe new ones come. But I am confident they will. ;)
  15. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    I don't want to give up on this after having put so much time and effort into it. I see that my problem may be people being put off by overly long chapters. I'll definitely keep that in mind for the next fanfic I write.
    Chapter Six will be posted soon, and if I still have no regular readers after that, then I'll probably let this die.
  16. Jedi_Trevor_GulDan Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 2003
    star 1
    Winged_Jedi: I didn't realize you had such a great story! The post are definately long, but well worth the read! Keep up the great work!
  17. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    A reader! :D

    And my friend Jedi_Trevor_Guldan, no less. Welcome! I know the posts are long, but as you say, I hope they're worth it. I'm going to shotren them for the next chapter. This gives me new incentive to finish Chapter Six!
  18. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    OOC: The first part of Chapter Six.

    Chapter 6: Truth and Betrayal

    Three weeks had passed since Jace's death. The headquarters seemed to be too busy, though it was always busy these days. The mercenaries barely talked anymore between missions. Most had their minds firmly on their jobs, the time for socialising had passed, and now there were too often awkward silences in the office. Since Jace's death, the blame had been put firmly on Kalan's shoulders, and he knew it, though no one said it aloud. But as Nerival frequently pointed out now, death was the nature of their work. It was time to put sentiment aside and get on with the task.

    A small but very expensive simulation room had been built behind the headquarters, and Kalan was found there night after night, honing his target skills against holographic mynocks and pirates. He never spoke in a friendly way anymore, to anyone, not even Nerival. And especially not to Simeon. He had become more demanding, docking pay for the slightest mistakes and forcing the men to train for hours on end, every day. He had even been close to firing Thermo after the Zabrak had made a bad error of judgement during a mission, but Nerival had taken Kalan aside for a quiet talk, and Thermo's job was saved, though Kalan was in a worse mood than ever.

    So it was that when the smartly dressed Sullustan walked through the open headquarters entrance, no one looked up, and he had no greeting except the stoniest of silences. Almost everyone was out on a mission, even Nerival. And so Kalan was alone with Simeon in the main office at the moment, and not a word was exchanged between the pair as the Sullustan at the door coughed politely. Simeon just stared at some datapads. Kalan began shuffling through some paperwork, and said, without looking up,

    "Who are you and what do you want?"

    The Sullustan frowned at Kalan before coughing again and saying,

    "My name is not of importance. I work for Jabba the Hutt."

    Kalan froze, though he still did not look up. Simeon switched off his datapads and put them nearby on Nerival's desk. The Sullustan continued.

    "Jabba feels you may be the right company to do some work for him. He needs you to erase some people."

    Kalan looked up at last, and gestured for the alien to sit down. Simeon went to close the security door behind them. Kalan looked the alien in the eye and said,

    "Why would Jabba want to use us?"

    "Jabba thinks very highly of you. Your Corival Mercenaries have become quite well known on Tatooine. I presume you are Mr Kalan Coral? I am afraid I do not know this other gentleman."

    Simeon looked carefully down at the desk in front of him, as if studying something. Kalan ignored him a sharp look and said,

    "Just get on with it. What does Jabba want done."

    The Sullustan paused, obviously put off his stride by Kalan's roughness.

    "I do not think Jabba would appreciate such rudeness, Mr Coral."

    "I said get on with it."

    The Sullustan paused again, glanced at Simeon nearby, who remained expressionless, and carried on.

    "Very well. There is a man named Saul Valley. He used to work for Jabba, about a year ago. He was a trusted employee. He knew a lot about Jabba's business dealings."

    "How much?"


    "Enough to be dangerous, you mean."

    "That is not of importance, Mr Coral. What is of importance is that Mr Valley tried to turn men against Jabba. He attempted to overthrow him. Needless to say, he failed. He was kept in the dungeons for a long while, due to be executed, but engineered an escape. He was not seen again, presumed dead, probably in the unforgiving Dune Sea. Jabba reluctantly let the matter end there, though he had the dungeon guards executed in Mr Valley's place. However, very recently Jabba has heard rumours. Rumours that Mr Valley is still alive. We want to you to investigate these rumours, and if they are true, then hunt down and kill Mr Valley. He knows far, far too much about Jabba's business affairs to be allowed to live."

    "I see. And where do you suggest we start?"

  19. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    Feedback, anyone?

    Well, I'm going to have to cut this story down to a much quicker ending then I'd previously planned, since I haven't got a reader in sight, but I'd still like to finish the story off. :)
  20. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    Today I found out that there are people called 'readers', who apparently 'read' fics and give something called 'feedback'. Surely this is some sort of sick joke? What kind of strange creatures are these 'readers'?

    Only kidding. :)
    If there is anyone actually following this story (I am certain there is, somewhere ;)) The long overdue last part of the Chapter will definitely be posted some time this week.
  21. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    OOC: I know, it's late, but I have little motivation to write this fanfic anymore, I've moved on to other stories and ideas. Anyways, I'm still trying to work out how I can get this to a very quick and yet satisfactory conclusion.

    Chapter Six (continued)

    "Let's get one thing straight," snarled Kalan as a gentle wind blew sand around him, "I don't like you. In fact, I can't stand even being around you. As far as I'm concerned, you're scum."

    "Such kind words," laughed Simeon, though he wasn't smiling. "Trust me, I have no great fondness for you either."

    Kalan just turned his attention back to the speeder controls. He and Simeon were on their way to Saul Valley's abandoned home, to see what they could find there, to see if Valley was even still alive. Five days had passed since the Sullustan's visit, and the whole company had agreed it was looking like a very important mission. However, with so many missions already on the go, only two mercenaries could be spared for the job. And it was undisputed that Kalan and Simeon were the best two mercenaries the company had. Even Nerival agreed.

    So far the pair hadn't found much on Valley, though they hadn't been working together very well. They didn't even have a picture of Valley, except one left by the Sullustan of the man when he was imprisoned in Jabba's dungeons. Valley had a long and dirty beard by then, and not much could be seen through his matted hair. The picture was useless, because if Valley was still alive, he would have surely shaved off the beard and taken other measures to disguise himself. They had heard from smugglers that Valley had been Jabba's majordomo for a short period, and that he was a cunning and cruel man, not to be underestimated. They hadn't found out much else, but decided to visit his old home in the desert. They were well prepared in case Valley was waiting; Kalan had two blaster rifles, while Simeon had a grenade launcher.

    The speeder shot across the hot sands to the coordinates the Sullustan had given them, Kalan and Simeon barely saying a word to each other. Eventually signs of a settlement could be seen in the distance, and as the speeder came closer, it looked more like an old moisture farm. Kalan stopped the speeder a good distance away from the home, and got out, slipping one rifle into the sling over his back and cradling the other in his arms. Simeon did not get out of the speeder, but sat inside, apparently deep in thought.

    "What are you waiting for?" hissed Kalan. "Come on!"

    Simeon paused for another moment before getting out of the speeder himself and following Kalan. He readied his grenade launcher for use and the pair slowly and silently approached the farm as the twin suns beat down on them from above.

    Kalan's eyes narrowed, alert for any movement nearby. He stepped down the stairs into the old farm, pointing his rifles at walls and shadows, and Simeon crept quietly down behind him. Kalan stopped at the bottom of the stairs, looking around. Nothing could be heard but the soft wind across the sands.

    "Right," muttered Kalan to Simeon, stepping forward. "It doesn't look like he's home. I'll check that room over there, you look about that place- looks like a kitchen."

    Simeon nodded and headed over to the kitchen area, while Kalan went past him into a large, shadowy room at the end. The room was a mess, and the last time Valley had been here he had obviously left in a hurry. A long wooden table was at the end of the room, with three overturned chairs nearby. A solitary glass stood the corner, and an open bottle of what, on closer inspection turned out to be fine Chandrilan wine. Kalan checked it, but it seemed Valley had had a good drink before he left, because nothing was left in the bottle.

    Papers were scattered along the table, strewn on the floor, pinned on the wall. Kalan waded into the mess, eyes alert for anything useful. He picked up some of the papers at random and looked through them.

    To Kalan's great interest, some had quite a bit to do with Valley's dealings with Jabba. Some of
  22. Winged_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4

    In a corner of the Selonian Smuggler, there sits an old, grizzled soldier, spending his days drinking unknown sorrows away. Some of the cantina?s patrons try to talk to him, try to discover exactly what it is that keeps him there, day after day after day. But they never get an answer. He just stares at them, slides off his stool and strolls out of the place, only to return tomorrow.

    One day, a young Rodian tried to buy him a drink. The man said something. He said he?d come to Tatooine two years ago, and that these last years had been the worst of his life. He said that he was hiding from someone, and that the Rodian must promise not to tell anyone just who he was. The Rodian chuckled, as did his friends, who had by now gathered around to see the old drunk speak. The man continued. He said he knew of the famous Simerival Mercenaries that everyone had been talking about recently. He said he knew the guy in charge of the company.
    The words ?scumbag?, ?Hutt slime? and various, other, stronger expletives were used to describe this gentleman. Finally the man said he was the greatest rogue and pirate on Tatooine, and that he?d taken down a Krayt Dragon. At this point, the Rodian and his friends laughed louder, and moved away, their amusement with this odd old human at its end. The next day, the old man had gone. He did not return the next day, or the next, or the next. Some people thought he was dead.

    But he waits, alone, somewhere. His mind is set on his one goal, and one name. One day, he would get off this wasteland planet. But not before he got his revenge. Kalan has a plan. And nothing else matters to him.

    And so it ends. Twenty thousand five hundred and ninety five words in that story. Hours of my time. Wasted. True, I rushed it a lot at the end, and I don?t like the end result at all. But that?s what comes of having approximately zero readers and no motivation.

    It?s quite strange and yet amusing to know that no one will ever see this post. So if someone is in fact actually reading this, then let me give you some advice from a failed fanfic writer:

    1) You need a lot of luck.
    2) You need to know what people like to read. Unfortunately they don?t like to read huge massive chunks of story, which is my main failing.
    3) You need a lot of help, you can?t just jump in. I did. Look where it got me.
    4) You need to be able to enjoy writing the story so much that you can stick with it. A major problem for me.

    Notice that it did not say in that brief list that you need to be a good writer. You don?t.

    Now I know there?s a heck of a lot of room for improvement in my own writing, but there?s other people at JC Fan Fiction who lack fundamental writing skills but carry on oblivious. Many have such a lack of basic spelling and punctuation that it seems like they?re writing fanfics in shorthand. And yet still they manage to attract regular readers.

    On the other hand, most of these readers give such meaningless comments that it doesn?t really make a difference. How do you know if someone?s enjoyed your post (or even read it at all) if all they say is ?good post, nice description, can?t wait to read more? ? Why bother replying at all if you going to make such useless remarks? Luckily, this problem is not one I have encountered much in my own fics. Then again, I have only ever had about four or five readers.
    Apologies for this rant- it?s unusually nasty for me- but I had to get it off my chest. Perhaps if a mod sees this it will be edited. But then it?s unlikely anyone will see it. Ah well, my foray into fan fiction is over. Or it will be, once I finish my other fic (where I am grateful for the fine regular reader I have). I have no regrets, though you may think otherwise. It?s actually quite sad and pathetic that I?m writing this at all, but hey, I?m a little strange. ;)

    Thank you all for your time. Adieu. :)
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