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Before the Saga Another Reality (480 BBY, OC's)--Chapter 2 (June 2)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by leiamoody, Dec 24, 2015.

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  1. leiamoody

    leiamoody Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 8, 2005
    Title: Another Reality
    Author: leiamoody
    Timeframe: 480 BBY
    Characters: Aduman Nical, Chevor Mikayzd, Nellith Kaido (OC's)
    Summary: Two Jedi go in search of knowledge about life after death.
    Disclaimer: I don't own Star Wars, that belongs to Disney. I'm not making any money off this fic either, so if you feel like your time was wasted by reading it, THAT. AIN'T. MY. PROBLEM.



    Chapters
    1. First day of Kalima, dawn
    2. The Niad Shrine
    3. Well of Ouill
    4. Garahaldin's Hut
    5. Third day of Kalima, noon
    6. Whispering Cave of The Four Oracles
    7. Rendezvous Bay
    8. Ouremer Island
    9. Seventh day of Kalima, dusk
    10. Kyokeris' Tomb
    11. Cliffs of Monjoi
    12. Jedi Enclave ruins
    13. Naxotiris Gate
    14. Neakam caldera
    15. Fourteenth day of Kalima, midnight
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    (Extract from Mirror of the Knowing Soul, written by Whills shaman Nellith Kaido, 480 BBY):

    First day of Kalima, dawn
    There is life, and there is death. The balance has always existed since the universes were first knitted together into the Great Tapestry. When the Overseers first created our small corner of the celestial tapestry (for we are indeed only minute threads interwoven as one in the fabric of space-time), they realized creatures who existed in this space we call a “galaxy” could not be immortal like themselves. The Overseers were, are, and shall continue to be undying (unless they descend into the mortal realm like those beings on Mortis awaiting the arrival of the Chosen One; the Father and his children have existed for millennia but will shed their physical forms and return to the Otherworld after the fulfillment of their mission).

    Yet life is not only the Living World, and death is not only the Afterlife. The Force is not merely the Living and Cosmic aspects, or the Light and Dark Sides of a balance that pervades daily existence. Life after life is composed of the Cosmic aspect, often paired with the Unifying Force which brings together the Living and Cosmic aspects yet also functions as a boundary to keep the Two Worlds separated.

    There is a cycle that every creature undergoes, from one span of time to another, across years/decades/centuries/millennia. There is a rotation not only between life and death, but also a movement from one life to a period of death followed by another life and then another space between lifetimes, until the one soul which unites each lifetime finally chooses to stop going through the cycle and fully become part of the Afterlife. Souls are created at its very heart, emanated and descended from the higher levels, reunited in the lowest realm, then finally ascend into the highest level and presented with two choices: become part of The Oneness (where all souls are created and will ultimately return), or to remain physically disembodied yet spiritually intact. Many beings will remain in this latter state for an indeterminate period, watching over their loved ones until those respective lifetimes are completed and they decide to join them in new bodies with new identities and suppressed memories of their previous lifetimes.

    But a few, ever so carefully chosen souls, are given a unique opportunity to become part of a group called The Ascended. This group of spiritual elite is culled from various living beings that have repeatedly demonstrated they are capable of understanding the complex arrangement of the Two Worlds and have learned to remain emotionally detached. These beings are watchers of events unfolding in the Living World, able to interact with mortals in

    temporarily assumed non-corporeal bodies which are usually copies of bodies from previous lifetimes. The Ascended are a subset of workers in the Afterlife; “ascended” can also be used to describe those individuals who once lived and then decided to fill various roles including counselors to recently deceased souls and attendants in the Universal Archives. But the group called “The Ascended” by certain Force Sensitives such as The Whills (of which I am part during this final incarnation) function as observers over every creature that breathes and bleeds.

    I shall become a member of this group when I complete this last incarnation. After I have purged memories and emotions associated with my twenty-one lifetimes, my soul will be clear and I will become one of The Ascended. What occurs in the upcoming centuries depends upon the nature of galactic affairs along with the precarious unpredictability of actions taken by generations of beings in the Living World. Certain events are inevitable: the Chosen One shall come into existence and bring the Force into balance, although how that balance will transpire remains hidden. That being who shall achieve this great feat will be a Skywalker, thus restoring that bloodline to prominence not witnessed since the First Days on Tython. Darkness will come upon the galaxy in such a fashion not seen for millennia. But this darkness will masquerade as something benign, a voice of reason in a time of chaos that will reveal itself as the ultimate threat to the Republic. The confluence of vanishing points in the space-time continuum suggest the arrival of a Skywalker as the Chosen One and the fall of the Republic will occur nearly simultaneously.

    But that is the future. Today I must deal with the emerging present, where matters of the Afterlife intermingle with the Living World. Two Jedi, a master and padawan, are coming here to Vouroso to uncover knowledge once commonly understood and disseminated among most Force using organizations across the galaxy. I will be their guide into this great mystery.
     
    yahiko, Kahara, AzureAngel2 and 3 others like this.
  2. divapilot

    divapilot Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Lyrical and beautiful. Profound in its scope. I love this galactic view, the idea of all-knowing and ever enduring beings who can see the vast landscape and the specific at the same time. I'm highly intrigued as to where you will take this!
     
  3. Ewok Poet

    Ewok Poet Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Oy! I was editing my notes for the vignette bearing the same name and the next thing I know, it's a longfic in its own right, exploring the whole concept. Delighted, absolutely delighted.

    As somebody who does not think that things are black and white and that there are no divisions, just spectres of this and that, all of which are a part of some sort of a complex, multispectral entity, I have enjoyed every single line of this.

    The concept of those entities who chose not to become part of The Oneness, but remain physically disembodied yet spiritually intact, is interesting. There are moments that imply how noble it is, to be watching over one's loved ones and, at the same time, being a spirit that cannot contact them is a drag. Once again, I would like to draw a parallel to Daughters of the Air from the original Little Mermaid and...that is where I realise that I would've probably picked to be one of these instead. It's more noble.

    These beings are watchers of events unfolding in the Living World, able to interact with mortals in temporarily assumed non-corporeal bodies which are usually copies of bodies from previous lifetimes.

    One of such entities would be the character Obi-Wan meets in this story, right? [hl=black]And the Grand Sage is the one speaking this?[/hl]

    And I can see how this contradicts Jedi's approach to attachment. Know what? I like this better. Not many beings are capable of being unattacked and there have got to be specific sets of circumstances and a specific set of mind for somebody to achieve that.

    With that mention of Tython, is it OK to assume that the first of this being's twenty-one lifetimes was back then? Or is that too much?

    Looking forward to more.
     
  4. leiamoody

    leiamoody Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 8, 2005
    I've had the idea of all-knowing, all-powerful beings watching over and (occasionally?) intervening in galactic affairs for about two decades now. (No, really). I've worked on various fics that allude to this idea over the past decade, but now I'm finally settling down and putting this notion into words
    once and for all.

    The character that Obi-Wan meets in the linked story is definitely one of these entities. She also makes a MAJOR appearance in this story.

    In regard to the blacked out section, that comment was really meant as a joke between master and padawan. But there is a Master of the Whills (you could call him "a grand sage") in
    this community, who isn't Nellith Kaido.

    Yes, this being's first lifetime was on Tython, back in the very early days of the Jedi Order. That will be covered in some detail later on.
     
  5. Findswoman

    Findswoman Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Ooh my, this is so gorgeous and so perfectly leiamoody I hardly know where to begin. I almost just want to let the whole thing just wash over me, just to open myself to it and learn how it all works. I know it'll be a glorious and enlightening experience whether things end up aligning with what we see in the films or not (and I can see in this opening chapter some spots where they might, and others where they might not). In fact, you give us just the right amount of alignment in that second-to-last paragraph of yours to serve as a foothold, and you get it to dovetail seamlessly with this subaltern universe you've crafted. And I know you're an expert like few others when it comes to crafting universes. :cool:

    There's more than a touch of Borges in the way this "other reality" and its denizens are so carefully and intricately described just as if they were being described by a cultural or spiritual historian in this reality of ours—and your very cool use of the framing device of the Whills shaman's treatise reminds of the way Borges uses similar devices. And since he's one of my favorite short-story authors, that is all a compliment. :D

    May I ask to be tagged on updates, if you're doing that kind of thing? [face_batting]
     
  6. leiamoody

    leiamoody Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 8, 2005
    When it comes to matching my theories on all things Force ghostie and how they may/may not fit in with what was shown in the movies…I’m going for the “meeting halfway approach”. There is very little that was shown in the movies; most of the explanations that are in canon really come from The Clone Wars cartoon series. I’m using the background established for the process in the final three episodes as part of my basis for a GFFA afterlife, along with influences drawn from the real world to create some other reality that is realistic and relatable.

    The other reality exists on another plane in its own self-contained space. It’s located outside the confines of physical space, rather like the planet Mortis is located in some extraphysical space (in my GFFA, Mortis is actually located in a pocket universe). It’s a next door neighbor to physical space, separated by an unseen yet impenetrable membrane to most living beings. The connection between the Two Worlds (Living World and Afterlife) used to be less solid, but a shift in beliefs among the majority of the galactic population created an impermeable barrier that only certain individuals could penetrate. The Afterlife has to come across as real in the same way as the Living World because it is real.
     
  7. leiamoody

    leiamoody Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 8, 2005
    The Niad Shrine

    "We are now in the mystery hour, when there is no barrier between life and death." Aduman paused long enough in his to look behind him at the young man stumbling up the dirt path. It was three o'clock in the planetary morning, and the Jedi Master was caught up in the middle of some sudden urge to step away from the wayfarer's cottage and trek down a half-curved path to a spiral labyrinth perched on a stretch of black sand overlooking the sea. Two moons and innumerable stars gazed upon the obsessed master and his beleaguered padawan.

    One master (Aduman Nical) and one padawan (Chevor Mikayzd) had traveled to an Inner Rim ocean planet called Vouroso in pursuit of knowledge possessed by a religious order called The Whills. This group supposedly knew about life after death. Not just some theoretical, philosophical or religious, but in a real space where all souls came and went like guests through the revolving door of some celestial hotel.

    Some conservatives among the Jedi Order questioned the impulses that pushed Aduman in search of forbidden knowledge. But Master Yoda permitted this "journey of exploration", with the caveat that his padawan was required to accompany him.

    The intention was a two-week pilgrimage that would carry them around several major stopping points along the planet until they reached a community of Whills. Aduman could have made the jaunt easier for himself and Chevor by utilizing the readily available modes of transport such as speeders. But the Jedi Master felt it was necessary to endure a certain level of physical suffering in the form of a walking pilgrimage across the land, although traversing the sea had to be accomplished by jet ferries.

    Once they arrived on the islet of Loroa, the Jedi duo's first stop was finding sleeping accommodations at the Mercy Overlook Hostel. They found accommodation in the smallest hut, then wandered into the village center to gulp down some local fishy stew and bitter ale. After this brief repast the unsettled master and his equally perturbed padawan made some attempt to rest for the evening before heading to the mainland at dawn's awakening.

    But the twin demons of grief and obsession pushed Aduman into the sudden pursuit of something unseen. This forced Chevor to stumble half-awake behind his master down the dusty path leading to a peculiar altar on a raised platform and the spiral labyrinth that stood ten paces away. "Could you tell me what—?"

    "You should understand that I have absolutely no idea what has pushed me from the second Naima gave away her life."

    Chevor stopped walking. "She allowed herself to be killed in order to save you."

    "I would have died for her, but instead she died for me." A bitter laugh emerged from the depths of the older man's disillusioned soul. "Her blessed essence has now become unified with those other departed souls into the Oneness. All of us cursed to remain in the realm of the living shall become enriched through our midichlorians with the collective presence of those now bound together in that grand ball of energy. Life takes away, the Force gives, or so we have been instructed by delusional mystics who spend years hiding away from the universe."

    "You are lacking in certain important elements right now."

    "What, O Grand Sage, are my deficiencies?"

    "Proper amount of rest, nutrients, and control over your emotions."

    "Plus a healthy dose of common sense as well?" Even under the watery moonlight filtered through nimbus clouds, the older man's face was pale like Aeitheran marble. Brown eyes were burned across the empty space between master and padawan, by the anger which motivated this late night pursuit for the unseen and possibly immortal was unable to disguise the fatigue which had become a regular companion in those months since Naima Kairos allowed herself to be murdered by the terrorist group called the Abyss Society when she, Aduman, and other members of a senatorial delegation were taken hostage on Knosce. Her act of sacrifice was born from the desire to save the life of the man she loved.

    Chevor slapped a pesky island creeper away from his neck. “We are supposed to focus upon the immaterial. The luminosity of our true selves doesn't lie in the flesh."

    "They forgot what is real," Aduman said. "There is something greater which awaits every living being after the end of physical life. This was commonly accepted for millennia until many beings, including Jedi, decided it was inconvenient to believe in what cannot be seen."

    "Blame that on the Pius Dea zealots."

    "Eleven thousand years have passed since they were removed from power. Surely the Jedi could have found their way back to the right path within those centuries."

    "Perhaps they don't feel it's necessary to believe in something more than life. We serve the Living Force, and that should be enough."

    Aduman glared at his padawan. "There are two sides to the great mystical energy field. The Living Force allows us to perform magic tricks, but the Cosmic Force is the translator between the midichlorians and us. Both sides need each other, just as the Two Worlds need each other."

    There was no use debating his master on the isolated beach in the middle of the night. Aduman had never been a Jedi who always followed every tenet of the Code, but he always managed to remain within the confines of respectable practice. After Naima's assassination he lost any reason to care about duty. He became obsessed with the possibility of some hidden world where he could find some remnant of his dead lover. Chevor provided the unexpected key to this pursuit when he learned certain information from the former padawan Zia Amopharis. She informed him of a remote planet called Xaan Doro where a specific archive devoted to groups who practiced the art of Force immortality could be found. Master and padawan traveled there and uncovered evidence of a lost nomadic group called the Whills. The Whills believed and preached not only about the actuality of a three-dimensional afterlife, but that everyone could survive after death with a complete extraphysical identity.

    "Beings evolve in stages. They often make huge strides toward a better understanding of the larger world, but will inevitably retreat back into familiar territory that is supposedly understood but really not comprehended by any of them."

    "You mean the Jedi don't truly understand the Force."

    "Yes, or much of anything, just like every being who currently exists. Including us."

    "Don't speak for me."

    Aduman laughed. "The fool always believes he knows everything." He pointed to the spiral monument. "Those men believed stone rectangles placed in a circle underneath the sky would lead them to truth. Individuals across eons in faraway places suffered from different variations of the same delusion."

    "Of course you know truth is a small word that encompasses a large concept."

    A brisk wind swept across the dark sea and caused Aduman to shiver. "Maybe our interpretation of truth begins here."

    Chevor gazed out across the black water. If there was anybody in something called "the Afterlife" watching over this space called "the Living World", those beings guided Aduman and Chevor toward this planet where the last known sect of Whills resided. Maybe yet another set of mysteries might be set in motion, with a new set of questions that needed to be asked, and a new set of answers yet to be discovered.
     
    yahiko, Kahara, AzureAngel2 and 3 others like this.
  8. Findswoman

    Findswoman Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Glad to see this continuing. :) Here, as with the first chapter, I'm going to refrain from trying to make too many clever interpretations, because this story defies that or transcends that or something along those lines. :D But I like how the the very metaphysical world so lyrically described in chapter 1 is beginning to take on a certain amount of physical shape now—and indeed that is the first thing we learn about it in this chapter, that it is indeed a three-dimensional place one can travel to, and not just a concept.

    Indeed, the blurring of the lines between metaphysical and physical is a theme that pervades this chapter. The distinction btween this reality and the "other" one is not a clear-cut duality of material and immaterial, as we learn from Aduman and Chevor's discussion: the traditional luminous Jedi immateriality is opposed here not with earthly reality but with a different kind of invisible world that nevertheless is reality. At least I think I understood that halfway right! So many delicious, subtle gray areas here, in true leiamoody fashion.

    And poor, beleaguered (good word!) Chevor, humoring his master's ambitious mission by accompanying him to the very edge of reality at oh-dark-hundred hours. :D I can almost see and hear his brainwheels turning as he tries to process the immensely complex and often counterintuitive things Aduman is telling him. And I have to say that I love that it was Admuan's padawan learner, rather than some senior Jedi, who was sent along with him as a cautionary counterbalance. This conversation with Chevor, and likely others to come, isn't just about explaining what's what to the callow padawan; it's also about Aduman sorting out his own thoughts and feelings on the matter, and that sort of thing is perhaps what Yoda had in mind.

    Can't wait to see what awaits these two, and what those new questions and new answers will be! :)
     
  9. Ewok Poet

    Ewok Poet Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jul 31, 2014
    This is the point where I casually search for my notes from when this was first posted in your misc thread and try to go through them. But if it ends up being half-assed, I'm sorry - this is very, very complex and it's entirely possible that I'm missing on something. [face_blush]

    Nice to see Vouroso again (or any of your finely-crafted planets, for that matter), but even nicer to see Chevor. Now we at least know that he passed his trials. :)

    The mythology is strong with this one. The sole idea of a "mystery hour" - whether it's a random idiom or an actual time when the crucial step of the journey of exploration has to be performed - is great. It reminds me of so many pagan rituals, Wiccan stuff in particular. The fact that plants are implied to be in another plane of existence just adds up to it. Everybody, or almost everybody, forgets that trees are friends.

    The pagan-esque elements blend in well with New Testament-ish idea of a walking pilgrimage...which is then contrasted by, well, not being able to walk on water. Could it be that absolute power is not possible? Hmmm.

    And there it is, history repeating and things being treated differently each time:

    - Yoda apparently frowning upon this, knowing that he eventually receives a similar "message" from Qui-Gon Jinn, once the latter becomes one with the Living Force

    - A "senator died to save others".

    - Forbidden knowledge on cheating death being available.


    Well-played. Well-played. :D
     
  10. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    I am still not sure if I understand your text fully, but it is enchanting and sucks me in as a reader.
     
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