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Saga - OT Shadow of a Doubt (Kanan/Hera)/ One-Hit Wonder Challenge

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Raissa Baiard, Mar 6, 2018.

  1. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Title: Shadow of a Doubt
    Author: Raissa Baiard
    Timeframe: Saga, approximately 8 BBY
    Characters: Hera Syndulla, Kanan Jarrus, Chopper
    Genre: Romance
    Synopsis: A year after Kanan joins the Ghost’s crew, he and Hera struggle to define their feelings for each other.
    Notes: for the One-Hit Wonder Challenge. My song was Silhouettes—The Rays (1957)

    Thanks to @Findswoman, the Galaxy’s best beta-reader, beyond a shadow of a doubt. @};-

    ———-

    The blue-skinned Twi’lek sitting across from Hera Syndulla was easily twice her age and was missing the lower third of his right lek, but her eyes sparkled merrily as the two of them chatted. He leaned forward and took one of her hands in his. Whatever he said to Hera made her laugh as she pulled her hand away and wagged a gently remonstrating finger at him.

    Kanan watched them from across the cluster of tables outside the Smiling Tooka Café in Amma city on Barcana while he sipped a cup of caf that had gone cold and bitter. Hera had said she was going to meet a very important contact at the café, that it wouldn’t take long and he should meet her there as soon as the Ghost was refueled. But she’d been talking to the Twi’lek for nearly an hour now, smiling across the table at him and laughing frequently. They did not seem to be discussing business, and Kanan was beginning to feel a bit irritated. Of course, Hera didn’t owe him any explanations; she was the captain and he was just...well, whatever it was he was aboard the Ghost. They’d never formally clarified his job. Whatever his title, it certainly didn’t mean she had to tell him anything about her personal life. Still, if she’d been going out with this disreputable looking Twi’lek instead of meeting a contact, it might have been nice of her to give him a heads up, so he didn’t have to sit here watching them flirt all afternoon. Kanan scowled into his mug and drummed his fingers on the table.

    “Bwaah!” Chopper, Hera’s eccentric Clone War-era astromech, who was waiting with him, prodded Kanan in the side with a grasper. “Bwah bwaahbwah bwop.”

    “I should tell her?” Kanan frowned. He gotten pretty good at understanding the droid’s vocalizations, but he wasn’t sure what Chopper was referring to this time. “Tell her what?”

    His answer did little to clarify things. “How I feel about her? Chopper, what are you talking about?”

    “Bwah bwop bwaah bwop!”

    “I like her? Of course I like her.” Kanan had been working in his capacity as a jack-of-all-trades on the Ghost for close to a year now, ever since he’d helped Hera thwart the Empire’s plans on Gorse. In that time, he’d come to genuinely respect her for the strength of her convictions. She was a good and honorable woman, kind and caring as well as passionate and fierce. She was an absolutely top-notch pilot. Intelligent. Witty. And beautiful, too, of course...but that was beside the point. “Hera’s an admirable woman What’s not to like?”

    Bwaaah!” It was amazing how much annoyance the droid could express on that one syllable. “Bwah bwop bwahbwah bwop!”

    “Then what did you mean?

    “Bwah BWAAAH bwop!” The last “bwop” trailed off into an electronic smooching sound.

    “What?!” Kanan fumbled with his caf mug, nearly dropping it. “No! I can’t… I mean, I don’t!” The droid was crazy. Just because Kanan liked Hera didn’t mean he liked Hera. They were colleagues. Friends. They made a great team. Nothing more. He didn’t need to be more, even if Hera was an amazing and attractive woman.

    Chopper snorted and poked Kanan in the ribs again, harder this time. “Bwahahaha! Bwah b’bwah bwahbwah bwop!”

    “The way I’m watching her? I’m watching Hera so I’ll know when she’s ready to leave. I am not staring.” Did mind tricks work on droids? Was there an off switch somewhere on the back of that flattened orange dome? There had to be some way to stop that evil electronic chuckling. Kanan stabbed a finger at the doid. “You’re delusional, you know that? When was the last time Hera had your circuits wiped?” Chopper gave an affronted “BWWWAAH!” and his electroshock probe suddenly arced with crackling blue sparks, zapping Kanan’s outstretched hand. He winced and twitched as all his muscles seem to spasm at once. “Ow! Why you maladjusted—”

    “You boys look like you’ve been having fun without me.” Hera had apparently finished her meeting or date or whatever she wanted to call it while Kanan had been arguing with Chopper. She motioned for them to follow her.

    Kanan rubbed his stinging arm as he rose; behind him, the droid snickered quietly. “And you looked like you were enjoying yourself.”

    “It was good to see Nawwaf again.” Hera answered with a smile as they made their way down the narrow, winding avenue that led from Amma’s merchant quarter back to the spaceport. “It’s been a long time since I’ve talked to him.”

    “A special friend?”

    “An old friend...of my father’s.” She tilted her head to the side and raised an eyebrow at Kanan. “Why? Would it matter to you if he was?”

    “What?” Kanan’s steps faltered. “No! No, of course not. You and I just work together. Why should it bother me if…” He smothered another scowl. First Chopper and now Hera. Why would either of them have these silly, unfounded suspicions? All right, so he’d been attracted to her to begin with, but their friendship had moved past that. She’d made it clear when he signed on that she wasn’t looking for that kind of companionship from him. And that was fine. “Anyway, you don’t have to worry about me. Jedi don’t form those kind of attachments.”

    Her eyebrows arched a little higher. “Those kind of attachments?”

    “Yes, you know…” What was that phrase? “Romantic entanglements. Emotional involvement leads to possessive feelings and jealousy. It clouds one’s judgement, so we’re instructed to avoid it.”

    “Entanglements.” Now Hera stopped, and there was an odd note to her voice he couldn’t quite place. Her mouth thinned out into a line the way it did when she discovered the Ghost’s navicomputer had developed another new quirk. “I see. Well, thank you for explaining that to me. I feel so much better now.” She gave her head a quick shake, lekku twitching, and Kanan thought she sighed a bit as she started walking again. “At any rate, Nawwaf had some interesting intel for us. Feel like doing some surveillance work tonight?”

    “Sure,” Kanan replied, glad to move on to a topic that wasn’t as discomfiting. Though why discussing attachments with Hera should make him feel as mixed up inside as a youngling learning the Code, he didn’t know. “What have we got?”

    “According to Nawwaf, Moff Ramier has been meeting frequently with a woman named Adila Zamin, a member of a crime syndicate called ‘Eighty-seven’.” Hera’s lips curved up into the smile that meant she was going to make trouble for the Empire—and enjoy every moment of it. “I’d be curious to know what the good Moff is discussing with ryll smugglers, wouldn’t you?”

    “Absolutely.” And Kanan would enjoy every moment, too. Hera could make trouble for the Empire like no one else; the subtlety with which she worked was a thing of beauty.

    Her smile broadened as they approached the Ghost. “Good! Dinner in the galley in half an hour. We’ll make our plans then.”
    ——-

    Author’s Note: The criminal organization, Eighty-seven is @Gamiel ’s fanon.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
  2. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    You KNOW I LOVED THIS [face_laugh] [face_laugh] Kanan's insistent claims of a platonic feeling for Hera - yeah right blended with Chopper's snark [face_laugh]
    Then the mission details. Yes defintely lends itself to making trouble. ;)
    =D=
    [:D]
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
  3. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    Nicely done, @Raissa Baiard! I like this section which is very in character for Hera. Maybe a mild hint of irritation, but born out Kana's protestations. He doth protest too much. Yep, too much of [face_not_talking] , not enough of :*.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
  4. divapilot

    divapilot Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Loved this! Please, please say we get to find out more.

    Kanan and Chopper’s teasing is adorable. The more he protests, the clearer it is that he’s got it bad for Hera.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
  5. Findswoman

    Findswoman Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Oh, what a fun start this is off to! :D You portray Kanan so adorably here, which of course comes as no surprise from one of this board's best Rebels writers. First there's his adorable little bit of irritation as he sees Hera chatting so familiarly with Nawwaf (which recalls the silhouettes in the prompt song)—and I love how he geys ever so slightly "schooled" to find out that this guy is not only (a) an old friend of Hera's dad, for Pete's sake but also (b) their actual intel contact... OOPS! :p A Jedi shall not jump to unwarranted conclusions, Mr. K. I. Jarrus! [face_shame_on_you] :p

    And then his absolutely adorable repartee with Chopper... where even to start? The snarky!denial!Kanan you've written here is just so cute and in character, and of course also in character is the way Chopper has totally got his number. "It was amazing how much annoyance the droid could express on that one syllable"—yes, this pretty much sums Chopper up, and I have a feeling he is going to be a big catalyst in this story... [face_batting] Finally, I love seeing Hera get her little bit of very in-character snark in too—"I see. Well, thank you for explaining that to me. I feel so much better now"—in response to nothing other than a very cutely Kananesque and Jediesque "romantic entanglements equal bad" spiel. :D But it's not really much of an argument, and they quickly come to a topic we know they can both agree on: that of making trouble for Imps (and even in this area he admires Hera's beauty—luvvitt <3 ). And if it's imps who are in contact with ryll smugglers, all the better! I was tickled to see @Gamiel 's fanon "Eighty-Seven" organization mentioned here, and will look forward to seeing the role that they will play.

    This is so sweet, and you write these folks so well—keep the fun coming, please! :D
     
  6. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Denial ain't just a river in Egypt, Kanan.
     
  7. NobodyIX

    NobodyIX Jedi Padawan star 1

    Registered:
    Feb 19, 2018
    Kanan and Chopper were so cute together. Droids can be so perceptive:D I wonder how long Kanan can avoid those pesky 'entanglements.' Well done bringing us right into their world.=D=
     
  8. Gamiel

    Gamiel Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Dec 16, 2012
    I'm not good at Reviews so I will just say that it was a nice read with Kanan & Chopper's interaction being the highlight and it was fun to see my fanon appear :)
     
  9. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    Kanan is so insightful when it is about the Force. But not when it is up to love & attachment. Difficult and tricky concepts for a Jedi knight. ;)
     
  10. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Awww, thanks! I’m so glad you enjoyed it! It was so much fun to write some fun Kanera mush after all the Very Emotional Emotions in Season 4 of Rebels. (Not that the Emotional Emotions haven’t inspired me, too, but sometimes you just need a good dose of mush.) Dear Kanan...:D A New Dawn makes it pretty clear he sees Hera as more than just the captain, but a Jedi, even a slightly lapsed one, shall not know love. It’s tough to reconcile what he feels with what he’s been taught. Chopper tries to help in the way that only that only Chopper can, but, sigh...no one ever listens to the astromech. :chopper:
    Yes, more is coming right up, where we get to see what Hera thinks of all this entanglement stuff. :eyelashes: Yep, Kanan’s definitely got it bad, but who can blame him when Hera is such an amazing woman, with that long list of virtues he catalogues. Not that he’s given it any thought or anything... ;)

    Nope, it’s also the default mode of Jedi who are starting to find the prospect of romantic entanglements intriguing.

    Thanks! And thanks for sharing your fanon! A criminal organization whose ranking members are Twi’leks seemed perfect for Hera and Kanan to match wits against. I’ve got a few ideas for them for the Fanon Plus One Challenge, too! Glad you enjoyed this!

    Chopper’s a very astute droid! He’s been around long enough to have figured out a few things about these silly, illogical organics and this strange thing they call love. Kanan will give it his best effort, but something tells me he would really mind being entangled all that much. ;)

    So true; being brought to view love as just another strong emotion that clouds one’s better judgement, it’s hard for him to admit his feelings. Good thing Chopper’s there to give him a nudge....or poke...or zap as required.

    Clueless Kanan is so much fun to write:kanan: I shouldn't say he’s clueless, though, he has a clue, or several, he’s just denying them with every fiber of his being. If he didn’t have them, Hera’s friendly chat with Nawwaf wouldn’t rub him the wrong way so much. But he CAHN’T let Hera know that because a Jedi does not...well, you know the rest. If he keeps telling himself, enough, Kanan might even start to believe it.
    I have a feeling it took Kanan and Chopper some time to get used to each other, since Chop was used to it just being him and Hera, and, well, Chopper’s a bit of an acquired taste :D Given how protective he is of Hera, the fact that Chopper’s telling Kanan to share his feelings with Hera is a sign that he really likes him...and approves the match! ;) With Hera’s snark, one might get the feeling it’s not just his Jedi-speak that’s making her snarky—do we sense some actual disappointment there? (And Kanan has totally not given any thought to how beautiful Hera is, because Jedi don’t do That Sort of Thing!)
     
  11. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Thank you to @Findswoman for beta-reading @};- [:D]

    Chapter 2

    Cooking was one of Hera’s particular tasks aboard the Ghost. She’d tried splitting the responsibility with Kanan when he joined the crew, but his culinary efforts had been...interesting, where “interesting” meant undercooked, overspiced, and generally inedible. As captain, she’d made the executive decision to take him off cooking rotation and put him on permanent clean-up detail instead. Fortunately, Kanan had plenty of other skills to his credit. He was equally handy with a blaster and a hydrospanner. He was shrewd when it came to planning incursions against the Empire, but he never shirked from doing manual labor like loading cargo. If only he weren’t so infuriatingly otherworldly when he lapsed into Jedi-speak.

    Hera set a pot of water on the tiny cooktop to heat while Chopper, who could never stay out from underfoot, fiddled with the the controls to get the temperature to a precise boil. She decided to make a mushroom sauce to add some flavor to the otherwise anemic freeze-dried noodles, and retrieved a small carton of cantarells from the conservator. “Kanan was certainly in an interesting mood this afternoon with all his talk of ‘entanglements’,” she commented, as she selected a knife and began to slice them.

    Chopper swiveled his dome towards her. “Bwaah b’bwah bwah bwop.”

    “What do you mean I should tell Kanan how I feel about him?” Hera paused, knife poised over a mushroom, and frowned. How she felt about Kanan? She had a bad feeling she knew where this was going. “What makes you think I have feelings for him?”

    “Bwah b’bwah bwaahbwah bwop bwaah bwa’bwah!”

    The knife fell out of her hand and hit the counter with a clatter. “I most certainly do not look at him like a lovesick tooka!” Astromechs weren’t supposed to have the capacity for imagination or creativity, so how was Chopper coming up with such a preposterous image? Hera felt the heat rise to her cheeks and her lekku writhed of their own accord. Her father would say this was what came of not performing routine memory wipes on one’s droids.

    “Bwaah!” Chopper insisted. “Bwah bwop bwah!”

    “No, I do not!” She turned away from him and busied herself chopping the mushrooms, the knife rising and falling with a series of rapid snicks. ”I admit, I like Kanan more than I thought I would. He’s turned out be a great help to me.” Kanan had seemed to be little more than a cynical loner when she’d first met him, but Hera understood now that it was a persona he’d adopted to protect himself. Once he’d learned that there were still beings he could trust, that streetwise veneer had peeled away, revealing a truly principled man underneath. Hera had learned to trust him, too, and to rely on him. He’d become more than just a member of her crew; he was a true partner and a good friend— but that was all he could ever be. “Anyway, you heard him.” Hera twisted her mouth into an approximation of of Kanan’s scowl and made her voice low and mocking. “‘Jedi don’t form romantic entanglements; we’re above that sort of thing.’ So even if I had feelings for him, which I do not…. Oh, why am I arguing with you about this?!” She threw down her knife at the sound of Chopper’s derisive snort, and whirled around, jabbing an emphatic finger towards the galley door. “Just go make sure your sensor dish is calibrated for tonight!”

    “BWAAAH!” Chopper threw up his graspers and rolled out of the galley, muttering about stubborn, illogical organics who could never say what they really meant.

    Hera scowled. Impossible droid! Chopper had been with her since she was a little girl, and probably knew her better than anyone, even her own father, but he could be more than a bit overbearing when it came to what he thought was good for her. Maybe she did need to consider cleaning up his circuits a bit. A lovesick tooka, indeed!

    The sound of her noodles boiling over, sizzling and splattering as the water hit the cooktop, snapped Hera back to the moment. She bit back an oath as she grabbed a towel and snatched the pot off the burner. Hot water splashed up onto her wrist; she hissed in pain and frustration.

    Hera leaned against the counter, rubbing the spattering of tiny burns and sighed. Her feelings for Kanan…. How could Chopper possibly know how she felt about Kanan when she wasn’t even sure herself? When they’d met, it had been painfully obvious that he’d been attracted to her, but he’d accepted the fact that she had no time or inclination for relationships at that moment. He’d signed on as part of the Ghost’s crew with that understanding, and it seemed he had moved past the initial attraction as he’d rediscovered his focus as a Jedi. Why that should bother Hera when she had no desire for “attachments” either, she didn’t know—but it did.

    Lately, she’d found herself wondering if Kanan Jarrus wasn’t exactly the kind of man she’d want to have relationship with if she could—honorable, strong, intelligent, and, yes, handsome, with those smoldering green eyes and the intensity of his oh-so-rare smiles and… And it didn’t matter. He was a Jedi, and Jedi didn’t get emotionally involved. Hera was committed to fighting the Empire, and that didn’t leave any room in her life for matters of the heart, did it?

    Right now—Hera shook her head to clear all this nonsense about attachments and entanglements and lovesick tookas from it—right now, it was time to focus on what really mattered. She had dinner to make and a mission to prepare for. Hera picked up her knife and chopped the mushrooms until she’d reduced them all to tiny slivers.
     
  12. Jedi Knight Fett

    Jedi Knight Fett Host, PT Interview Thread star 10 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Feb 18, 2014
    This is the second Fanfiction I have read of your’s. Just like the last time I want to say again how fantastic you are as a writer. I almost feel like I am reading a continuation of A New Dawn. Keep up the great work and I will keep reading it.
     
  13. JediMaster_Jen

    JediMaster_Jen Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jun 3, 2002
    Gotta love Chopper! He gets right to the heart of the matter. :) Loved this. You are an amazing writer. ^:)^
     
  14. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Agree on all counts. =D= [face_laugh] Yup, Hera is insistently denying as well. I am not a lovesick tooka either! [face_laugh] Uh-huh. Her list of Kanan's high points is pretty on-target as well. [face_love]
     
    Ewok Poet and Findswoman like this.
  15. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Space! Mom is as bad as Space! Dad. Do y'all think the kids are blind? I mean, if even the mouthy droid knows what's up......
     
  16. Findswoman

    Findswoman Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Oh, this is at least as adorable as the first chapter! There’s something so endearing about seeing Hera, the practical, matter-of-fact freedom fighter, chest-deep in that same River in Egypt—and once again it occasions some absolutely priceless repartee with that perceptive little orange-domed astromech who can see what’s going on even better than the organics can. It’s especially cute to see the matter-of-fact Hera sinks little flights of imagination about Kanan, his bright green eyes and winning smile, all his attractive and likable qualities... only to quash the very thought, because COMMITTED TO FIGHTING EMPIRE, plus JEDI. :p I love too how her feelings are reflected in the way she carries out her cooking work: it’s as though the extra-determined chopping is a mechanism for making it TOTALLY CLEAR that THAT’S ALL THEY EVER CAN BE, and yet the fact that she lets the noodles boil over reveals just how flustered she is. It’s all yet another delightful exercise in “keep telling yourself that,” and I can’t wait to see what will be the catalyst for these two to finally make their feelings mutually known! (Hint: :chopper: :p )
     
  17. Ewok Poet

    Ewok Poet Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 31, 2014
    I have not read A New Dawn, so this is pretty much the act of dipping my toe into the pre-HoloNews shorts era...for the second time, as there was that Finds' story about Kanan/Caleb's celebration some months ago. :) So, if you have to 'splain me at any given point - go ahead, by all means.

    What's interesting to me from the very first moment on is that Kanan and Hera, together with Chopper are pretty much all of the Ghost's crew at this point, aren't they? That would imply that Hera is used to spending her time more or less alone, with an occasional b-wop from her astromech.

    And just like your two primary OCs, they both had a great share of losses and disappointment in the system, plus they're both on the run and I can totally see how their priorities in life at this point would not center around an eventual romance.

    One can see that Kanan is not capable of reaching deep within and it's not a surprise after all that had happened to him. Plus, a jack-of-all-trades is not exactly his calling, his mission. But Chopper, the keen eye and the storyteller of the Rebels 'verse is there to point out something sprouting, something that will become more obvious as the time goes by. Not surprised that the bad boy of the eventual Ghost Crew is the one to know about these silly organics' feelings long before they do!


    That was a great exchange. It's funny how the same thing looks different from somebody else's POV.

    And theeen there it is, Kanan's explanation of the Jedi Code out of nowhere. He could've been a tr00 Padawan and reach out to peace instead of emotion, but he displays a typical case of suspiciously specific denial. Ha! Busted!

    Can't he pluck a quadduck with his lightsaber? Geez, Louise!

    Okay, that sounded wrong and I did not even intend it to be that way!

    Hera's flavour of suspiciously specific denial is completely different. Here we have that trope of a tough girl deconstructed almost immediately - why can't she be tough and enjoying cooking, too? Especially if her organic crew member could as well poison her by sheer accident. And then, in a true romance fashion, she discusses the matters of heart with the ultimate matchmaker...Chopper, once again! The little droid is up to no good and he's there to make things right, the only way he knows - through provocation.

    Barely related, but I can see why Hera was the first to take Ezra underneath her wings. In a way, he reminded her of Kanan when they had met. Strange are the paths of love, aren't they?

    That goes well with cooking. This woman can do everything and we wuv her that way. Badass. 100% badass!

    And of course that she was the one to get burned. Kanan hurting himself on his lightsaber would've been a far bigger issue. :p Seeing Chopper's tenderness at this very moment made me go aww, just like in that drabble. He truly loves Hera and he would not tease her to the same extent as he would others.

    Wondering if the rest of the story will alter POVs or if it's all Hera. :hera:

    Anyway, all caught up! [face_dancing]
     
  18. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    [face_laugh][face_blush][face_rofl]
    Excellent follow up chapter, @Raissa Baiard! I loved other side if the denial/acceptance of Chopper's encouragements. Seeing Hera flustered is all kinds of fun.

    I can't wait for more. I'm sorry it took me so long to get to this update! :cool: You have chapter 3 ready to go, right? [face_hypnotized][face_hypnotized][face_hypnotized]

    Edit: Another thing I liked about this is that Hera actually doing something while responding to Chopper. The cooking aspect is a nice touch.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2018
  19. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    [face_blush]Thank you very much! I really loved A New Dawn, in fact it was my introduction to Kanan and Hera, so I take that as a high compliment indeed!
    Oh yeah, good old Chop tells it like he sees it. His tact circuits apparently wore out sometime during the Clone Wars and were never replaced. :p Of course, in this case, he's absolutely right, even if his organic crew mates won't admit it. Thank you! [face_blush] I'm glad you're enjoying the story.
    They're as bad as each other! This story takes place before they pick up all the space!kids, but yeah, when the droid has it figured out, it's pretty darn obvious!
    Hera is focused and practical, but she's got her softer side, too, the part of her that cares deeply about people, not just issues. It's the part of her that led her to save an astromech from a crashed Y-wing and take a cynical Jedi-in-hiding on as part of her crew. And of course, she sees how honorable he is beneath that facade--and those eyes and that smile are a plus, too! :) She hasn't quite come to terms with the fact that both sides of her are important, and commitment to a cause doesn't mean she has to close off the part of herself that feels and loves. In the meantime, though, she will show those mushrooms that she DOES NOT have ANY FEELINGS WHATSOEVER for Kanan Jarrus. They might believe her, even if Chopper doesn't...even if she doesn't quite believe it herself.
    Yes, they are the entire crew at this point. Hera's been on her own except for Chopper.

    :D Funny you should mention those OCs, because the similarities between Doran and Kanan were one of the things that struck me when I was reading A New Dawn. I guess the cynical loner with a heart of gold is an archetype for a reason. (And of course those similarities are what lead to the entire Marzra-verse: wondering what would happen if got those two together).

    Kanan's done a lot of odd jobs since he's been on his own since age 14-- hauling cargo, tending bar, running cons... Jack-of-all-trades aboard the Ghost may not exactly be his true calling, but it's brought him back to having a purpose to what he does, not just living day to day. It's a change and a stretch for him, but a change for the better. And his feelings for Hera are change, too, one he's not quite sure how to deal with.

    Oh, Hera's being totally facetious, telling these two scrapping tookas they look like they're having fun.

    Heh heh heh... yeah, Kanan doth protest too much. Jedi DON'T HAVE THOSE FEELINGS. And he's a Jedi. SO HE DOESN"T HAVE FEELINGS. QED. That's logic.

    Sure you didn't :p

    Why shouldn't she enjoy cooking? Isn't that the heart of feminism, that a woman can be and do whatever she wants? Being strong and capable isn't just about kicking bad guys' shebs. And, yup, Chopper in this case is more like the annoying younger sibling there to point out that she loooooooves Kanan! Poke! Poke! Poke!

    Yes, I'm sure she saw a lot of Kanan in young Ezra. They were a lot alike, more than either of them would have cared to admit in the beginning!

    Yes, Chopper really loves her and that's one reason he's going to do his best to get these two silly kids together. He sees the feelings they won't admit and knows that they'll make a good match. Of course, he's going to do it his way, which means they'll both be seriously annoyed with him by the time it's all over, but hey, it'll be worth it in the end!

    Thanks! It is kind of fun to let Hera have some girly moments every now and then. I mean, sure, she's a capable, kick-shebs woman, but everyone has those times when their heart gets the better of them. And when you feel like you have to be capable and kick-shebs at all times, dealing with those feelings can be even more difficult.

    You must be psychic, because I just finished it up today!

    Thank you! It's tough sometimes, because I tend to write the dialogue first and then go back and fill in the action. Sometimes I have to pretend like I'm watching an episode and think "Ok, so Hera's in the kitchen...what is she doing while she's talking?" And being Mom myself, cooking's one of those things that's easy for me to visualize! :p
     
  20. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Thanks to @Findswoman, beta-reader par excellence! A boquet of queen's hearts and sweetblossoms for you! @};-

    Chapter 3

    Moff Ramier’s townhouse was in the heart of Amma, conveniently located near the capital’s theater district, a variety of fine restaurants and—ideally for Kanan and Hera’s purposes—a municipal park. A manicured flower garden at the top of a gently sloping hill overlooked the moff’s residence. From there, they could not only see over his vine-draped privacy fence, but, with macrobinoculars, they could look right into the floor-to-ceiling windows of his tastefully appointed conversation circle.

    By the time Kanan had finished the task of bugging the Moff’s house—and he didn’t like to think how the Moff had enough money to buy so many paintings—the sun was beginning to set. There was a cool evening breeze blowing when he reached the park; it stirred the flowers, wafting the scent of sweetblossoms through the arboray trees. Hera and Chopper had already taken their stations at the top of the hill. Hera was lying between beds of deep red queen’s heart flowers as she monitored the townhouse below; Chopper was half hidden in a cluster of Ithorian rose bushes, his sensor dish swiveling slowly.

    “Any trouble?” Hera put down her binoculars and looked up as he approached.

    “Nope. A pair of worker’s coveralls and a little persuasion...” Kanan moved his right hand in a small arc…”and his aide was all too eager to let me in to repair the moff’s frotzing HoloNet connection.” He crouched down next to her and picked up his own binoculars. “I stashed a couple of listening devices around, in the conversation circle and office.”

    “There are some definite advantages to having you as part of the crew.” There was warm approval in Hera’s voice, and she flashed him a brilliant smile. Kanan felt like he would gladly go back and persuade the Moff to tell him exactly why he was meeting with drug smugglers if it would earn him another smile like that...not that the glow he felt when he saw it was anything other than the warmth of friendly camaraderie. He shifted away from her slightly and checked the settings on his macrobinoculars.

    “Chopper, make sure you can pick up the signals from the devices,” Hera instructed the droid.

    “Bwah…” He titled his dish back and forth until a burst of static crackled over his receiver. It resolved into soft strains of music—distinctly amorous music. Kanan recognized the signature bass-baritone voice of the Ithorian singer Bari Viess, from his time tending bar on Gorse; he’d been a favorite of drunk and...over-friendly...males who were trying to put the moves on their dates.The Moff crooned along as he poured wine—a nice Corellian red, Kanan noted through his macrobinoculars— just before he opaqued the windows, transforming himself into a mere silhouette.

    Ramier was not a good singer by any Human or near-Human standard... there might have been a species who found flattened tones and strained notes melodious, it was a large Galaxy, after all. Hera winced as he hit a particularly off-key note. “Sounds… good, Chop. Now all we have to do is wait.”

    Fortunately, given the Moff’s limited musical abilities, they didn’t have to wait long. He had just finished a particularly labored version of “What’s New, Tooka-kit?” when the door to the conversation circle door swished open and a female Twi’lek with a trim figure and swaying lekku stepped in. “Adila, darling! It’s been too long!” Ramier rushed to embrace her, pulling her into a kiss that would have made even those over-friendly drunkards on Gorse blush.

    Adila finally drew away, laying her hands on Ramier’s shoulders and pushing him back. “It’s only been a week!” she cried with a throaty laugh.

    He pulled her close again, crushing her against him. “A week is too long! A day! An hour!” Each exclamation was punctuated with a kiss, and each kiss was progressively longer and more passionate than the one before. “You can’t keep doing this! Every time you leave, I worry that it will be the last time I see you. Promise me you’ll leave Eighty-seven, Adi!”

    “Yes, love, I promise.” Adila traced a finger down the line of Ramier’s jaw, then leaned forward, nestling her head against his shoulder. “This is the last job. This one makes it all worthwhile and then...then nothing can stop me from being with you.”

    “You don’t know how long I’ve been waiting to hear you say that!” Ramier kissed her again, another deep, lingering kiss, their silhouettes melting into each other as they embraced. His hands slid lower and lower as they kissed, and her lekku swayed as they staggered back towards the sofa. Faint gasps, mmm noises and the odd murmur of “oh, Adi…” were the only sounds besides Viess crooning “Amorous Emotions Pervade the Atmosphere” for several minutes.

    Watching the shadowy forms of Adila and Ramier locked in passionate embrace, Kanan began to feel uncomfortably warm. This was not something he needed to see. A Jedi should not be spying on such a private moment, but it was like the proverbial repulsor-train wreck—the harder he tried not to look, the more he found himself looking. A Jedi should not be staring, or at the very least, should not view such romantic and physical entanglements as anything...interesting. And that, almost more than the fact he was spying on the couple, made Kanan want to writhe in embarrassment. Because he couldn’t help but notice that Adila Zimin’s silhouette was reminiscent of Hera’s lithe form...and once he’d noticed that, he’d begun to think about her...what it might be like to hold Hera the way Ramier held Adila, to press his lips against hers, to stroke the silken skin of her lekku, and…

    Kanan tossed his binoculars down. “Turn it off!” he snapped. “Chopper, turn it off! That’s enough!” The uncomfortable warmth had spread; he was sure his face was now redder than a squashed blumfruit, and he sincerely hoped that Hera had not noticed his reaction. He ventured a glance in her direction...

    Hera was laughing. Her eyes sparkled mischievously as she sat up. “Well! I wasn’t expecting that, but I suppose now we know why they’ve been meeting so often!”

    He tried to answer, to come up with a clever response, but all that came out was a strangled noise that sounded like, “urrrk!” In his mind’s eye, he pictured her in his arms, smiling at him like that. Kanan scowled; a Jedi should not…


    “Do you really think love is that awful?” Her voice was soft and gentle, but it broke through the wall of should-nots and must-nots he was putting in place between them. There was a certain sadness in her eyes as they met his.

    “What? I don’t think…”

    “Attachments. Romantic entanglements. When you talk about love, it sounds… painful.” Hera sat back and regarded him pensively. “It’s not always like that, you know. Love can lift you up, not just tie you down and entangle you. Some of the bravest, most selfless acts I saw during the Clone Wars were inspired by love—love for their spouses, their families, their friends. It’s why they were fighting in the first place.”

    The Clone Wars… yes, Kanan thought, the war had brought out both the best and worst in people. He remembered how he’d felt when he’d been on Kaller with Master Billaba, Commander Grey, and his troops—Styles, Mixx, Remo...all of them. He’d felt more a part of something than he ever had before. He’d felt connected. It had been a good feeling, one he’d treasured, though Jedi weren’t supposed to hold on to those ties too closely. Now Kanan felt that same sense of belonging with Hera, and he wished the connection could be closer, even though he knew he should not. “The Jedi teach--”

    “What about you?”

    “What?” Hera’s question caught him off guard. The last time anyone had asked him his feelings about Jedi doctrine had been… Master Billaba on Kaller.

    “You said the Jedi teach, but what do you think?” Hera tilted her head slightly. “Do you think love is only about possession, and jealousy and clouded emotions?”

    He was a Jedi; of course he believed the teachings that had been handed down for generations. He was supposed to accept the Council’s will and its words, not to question them. But then, hadn’t Master Billaba always encouraged him to ask questions, to think beyond rote answers? Kanan shifted uneasily, scrubbing a hand over his hair and down to his shoulders. Did he really believe that love could only lead to attachment and from there to darker emotions? Looking into Hera’s eyes—so beautiful, so open and trusting—he didn’t know what to think. But he knew what his heart was starting to believe.

    “I don't know. I think…maybe...with the right person...you could be right,” Kanan stammered, struggling to put this unfamiliar idea into words, to define the way she had made him feel ever since he’d met her. “Love could...inspire you to be better… to do something more with your life than just get by.”

    Hera leaned forward. “And what would the right person be like?”

    “She…” Kanan faltered. “I guess she’d have to be compassionate… honorable… strong…”

    Her lips quirked into a mischievous smile. “Beautiful?”

    “It wouldn’t hurt.” Kanan felt himself smiling in answer. Oh yes, beautiful, too, no doubt—a queen among the queen’s heart flowers here in the twilight, as sweet as the scent of blossoms that stirred on the breeze. “But it would be her strength of character that really made her special, that made her the right one.”

    “Do you think you’ll ever find anyone like that?”

    Did he dare tell her the truth, that every word he’d said had been about her? Did he dare go against everything the Jedi taught about attachments? It was one thing to question, to wonder; another entirely to act on those feelings. Then again, could he keep going this way, living and working alongside Hera everyday but never saying a word about how he felt? He moved closer to her, leaning in. “I think maybe I h—”

    “Hey!” The electronically flattened tones of a stormtrooper shattered the fragile stillness of the moment. “You two! What are you doing over there?!”

    Kanan had to hand it to Hera—not only was she beautiful, honorable and compassionate, she was absolutely cool under pressure. Without a moment’s hesitation, she snatched up both pairs of macrobinoculars and shoved them as far under the nearest Ithorian rose bush as they would go. Still, they were going to have a hard time coming up with a plausible reason for being in the park after it had closed for the evening. He looked across the flower bed at Hera, who was looking back at him, a question in her eyes—what now?

    He did the only thing he could think of under the circumstances—he pulled Hera towards him and kissed her the way Moff Ramier had kissed Adila.
    ------

    Notes:

    Bari Viess:
    inspired by the inimitable Barry White, though the RL versions of "What's New Tooka-kit" and "Amorous Emotions Pervade the Atmosphere" ("What's New Pussy-cat" and "Love Is in the Air") were sung by Tom Jones
    Queen's hearts
    Sweetblossoms
    Eighty-seven: The Twi'lek smuggling ring is @Gamiel ’s fanon.
     
  21. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    You're on a roll with this one, Raissa! Absolutely lovely.
    you set the scene very well. Not only a beautiful park, but the scent of flowers in the air. Then...
    Love the image of the repulsor train wreck. Poor Kanan. It was the necessary trigger...
    Uh...@};- She's got him on the ropes. He's dazed and confused and she keeps hitting him! [face_beatup]
    As it should be. I really enjoyed this, Raissa. ^:)^[:D][face_love][face_hypnotized]

    I remember Castle and Beckett's fist kiss happening in a similar fashion. I can't wait for Hera's reaction. Or Kanan's for that matter. =D==D==D=
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2018
  22. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Buttinsky Stormtrooper's "help" was probably unneeded. I think Kanan might have kissed Hera anyway in another minute or two. Or ten.
     
  23. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    [face_laugh] Kanan's discomfort and questioning of what he has learned is understandable and in character absolutely! Hera's gentle questions peeled back the layers of denial. I think his action there at the last served more than one purpose, and I hope Hera realizes/can tell it was not an act. :D [face_love]
     
  24. Findswoman

    Findswoman Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    What a fun chapter that's also full of so much sweetness between these two. :kanan: :hera: Kanan is an absolute darling throughout, even when he's not trying to be; there's something very endearing about his continued denials of his feelings. Yep, just keeping telling yourself it's nothing more than "friendly camaraderie," Mr. K. I. Jarrus, sir. :p And I'm sure he didn't look half bad in those coveralls; I shouldn't wonder if that image is at least partially crossing Hera's mind as she compliments Kanna for the "definite advantages" he brings to their partnership. ;) Moff Ramier's over-the-top assignation with Adila is just priceless, and the Bari Viess songs, their GFFAified lyrics, and his inept attempts to sing them are just the icing on the cake! [face_laugh] As wacky as it all is, though, I can totally see where witnessing such a thing would give Mr. Jedi Shall-Not a certain amount of unease. I know you were concerned about writing that part of the story, that it might come off as squicky or voyeuristic, but it doesn't at all—you did a great job of capturing just how mixed Kanan's feelings are about what he's seeing, and hearing, and the "repulsortrain wreck" image is a very apt one for his feelings at this moment. Even when he's imagining holding and kissing Hera the same way, stroking her lekku, etc., it has a very tender, wistful feeling to it that doesn't feel at all lewd or icky; indeed, it's a very in-character sort of feeling for someone like him who's grappling with so many insecurities around This Whole Love Thing. I love his exchange with Hera right afterward—also so very in character for both, and I can tell that Hera is very much picking up on what he's trying not to say but actually is saying, if that makes sense. ;)

    And that climactic moment when they're caught—and have to think fast—oh, what a squee! :D [face_love] What luck that that stormie happened to come along: without knowing it, he gave these two the opportunity to do something they'd probably both been interested in doing but dared not admit. <3 Not only that, but it makes for an absolutely perfect cliffhanger too—will it convince the buckethead? Will they be able to make their escape safely? And what will they say to each other after this? Don't keep us waiting too long, pleeeeze! :D @};-
     
  25. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Thank you so much! The park makes a perfect overlook for spying on the Moff---and the perfect setting for romance, not as staged as the Moff's tryst with Adila, with wine and GFFA make-out music, but more appropriate for Kanan and Hera's budding [face_tee_hee]) feelings.
    Thank you! Yes, Kanan need that little nudge in the right direction; he was getting there, slowly, but between the Moff's actions sparking some interesting reflections on what it might be like to kiss Hera and then Hera's questions about how he really feels about love, Kanan's this close to admitting the truth! So when the troopers happens along...well, he can on;y think on one thing under the circumstances! :D
    :D No, his presence was definitely not required at that moment, but stormtroopers do have that way of turning up whenever they're least needed and/or wanted.
    It's hard for Kanan to unlearn all the lessons he was taught at the Jedi Temple about non-attachment and all those he'd learned about not trusting or getting close to anyone after Order 66. But Hera's compassion helps break down those walls he's put up around himself--and she does have a bit of a vested interest in doing so ;) The kiss--I have no doubt it was "the only thing he could think of", and not just as a way of fooling the trooper!
    Aww, thanks. I always enjoy writing Klueless!Kanan, because he is just so cutely oblivious when it comes to matters of the heart. He's trying really hard to reconcile What a Good Jedi Should Do with what his heart wants. He's always skirted the non-attachment doctrine a bit, developing close relationships with Master Billaba and the clone troopers under her command and later with Janus Kasimir, but his feelings for Hera take it a step further into Forbidden Relationship territory, as far as the Old Jedi Order is concerned. (Re the coveralls: :D She does seem to be aware of all his advantages! )

    Hee hee...well, the Moff and Adila weren't expecting anyone to be watching or listening! I think Kanan's almost got a bit of an early teen's "eww I don't want to see this, but then again I kind of do......" attitude going on due to his lack of experience with any sort of romantic interaction. And thanks, I'm glad to hear that i didn't cross the line between Can't. Look. Away and voyeurism, because it did feel like a very fine like between seeing Ramier and Adila kiss making him think of kissing Hera (along the lines of the song lyrics) and, well, getting turned on watching :p Hera's quite perceptive, of course, and she is in her own way dealing with her feelings as much as Kanan is.

    I guess even stormtroopers havve their uses sometimes! And how about finding out now? :)