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Saga - OT Anything but Boring | OC feelings challenge

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Raissa Baiard, Mar 9, 2020.

  1. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Nov 22, 1999
    Title: Anything but Boring
    Author: Raissa Baiard
    Characters: Wren Ordo (OC), Kazuda Xiono, Sabine Wren, Bellona Ordo (OC)
    Genre: Humor, fluff, friendship
    Canonicity: AU
    Timeframe: OT, ca. 21 ABY
    Synopsis: Eight year old Wren Ordo thinks Coruscant is boring until she meets a new friend.

    Notes: This is written for the “Search Your Feelings” challenge; my emotion was ennui.

    So, this is kind of an AU of an AU :p This is how Wren originally popped into my head— as a spunky kid climbing trees in a Coruscant park. I was looking for ways to bring Kaz into the Marzra-verse although he’s younger than my next-gen Spectre kids. Wren showed up unexpectedly (Sabine and Maximus’s second child was supposed to have been a boy [face_laugh]) took a liking to Kaz and has been hanging out with him since. You don’t have to have read any of the other stories about them to understand this one, or know anything about Resistance to read it.

    Thanks to @Findswoman for beta-reading and encouragement.


    The Coruscant Institute of Art was widely considered the finest art museum in the New Republic. It contained hundreds of thousands of masterpieces from the greatest artists in history—everything from traditional Tatooinian sand castings to rare Alderaanian moss paintings, from flickering Corellian flame sculptures to sturdy Wookiee totems, and from delicate Gektl painted eggs to massive Massassi carvings.

    Which made it, in eight-year-old Wren Ordo’s opinion, the most boring place in the entire Galaxy.

    Because her mother and sister seemed bent on seeing every single one of those artworks—and not just seeing them, but discussing them. Analyzing them. In great detail. Using words like “chiaroscuro” and “mezzotint” and “intaglio” that Wren was pretty sure weren’t real words at all, just a kind of bizarre artists’ code meant to confuse and frustrate everyone else. Mom and Bellona could easily stand in front of a painting for a quarter of a standard hour talking about line and color and symbolism and meaning. Really? What could you say about lines besides “it’s straight” or “it’s curved’? And what was there to say about color? “Yeah, that’s really pink.”

    And they’d been at it for hours now! All the paintings and sculptures and artistic thing-a-ma-bobs had started to blur together, and Wren was about ready to fall asleep out of absolute and utter boredom—she was sure that it was the deepest, murkiest murk of boredom that anyone had ever endured in the history of Clan Ordo, and that was like thousands of years.

    She slumped on an artistically uncomfortable wrought transparisteel bench while Bellona and Mom gazed reverently at a painting by some moof-milker named Jolloq Paxon, whispering about to each other about the expressionistic genius of it all. Wren really wished she understood what they saw in it, because to her, it looked like a couple of Kowakian lizard monkeys had thrown rotten fruit at the canvas. She could have painted something like that, for the love of the Mand’alor!

    In an effort to figure out what was so special about this ugly so-called piece of art, Wren squinted at it (which only transformed the splotches into blurry splattered fruit), tilted her head back and forth (sideways fruit splotches) and finally lay down on the bench, put her feet over the back and hung her head upside down over the edge of the seat. But even this new perspective failed to improve the painting. Wren sighed gustily, consigning herself to her miserable fate—there were a dozen more of Paxon’s paintings to look at and another whole wing of the museum left to go .

    Bellona turned her head sharply as a jai’galaar at the sound, and she gave her sister a shriek-hawk’s piercing look and a tsk of disgust at her undignified position. “Wren! You are such a besom!”

    “I am not!” There was nothing wrong with her hygiene; she’d taken a bath just last night.

    “You so are! This is a museum and you’re climbing on the benches like some kind of monong! You have no manners and no culture!” Bellona hissed. She was twelve now and such a drama gualama about things, especially where art was concerned. She’d started adding colored streaks to her hair, like Mom’s (today’s were fuschia and electric blue) and if Wren had to hear about Bellona’s plans for designing her beskar’gam next year one more time, she was going to scream.

    “And you sound like an eopie bleating. How cultured is that?” Wren asked, sticking out her tongue.

    Girls—“ Mom’s voice was low but stern, her expression So Not Amused.. “Bellona, I expect you at least to be able to keep your voice down. And Wren…” Wren squirmed underneath her mother’s scrutiny, and quickly scrambled back to a sitting position—back straight, head high, at attention, like a Mando should be. Mom’s expression softened slightly and she sighed, “There’s a park in the plaza. Why don’t you go explore it while we finish here?”

    Exploring the park sounded promising—until Wren got there and then she was right back in the depths of endless boredom. Because it wasn’t really a park, at least not the fun kind with climbing rocks and zip swings and twirl-a-rounds. It was just a big grassy area decorated with trees from around the Republic with bronzium plaques beneath them to tell the clueless city-dwellers what they were.

    There was nothing to explore here. Wide, smooth, clearly marked paths crisscrossed the flat plaza. No matter where you stood, you had a twenty-meter line of sight and no cover. Leave it to Coruscant to render the few bits of nature it had left sterile and uninteresting. Mind-numbing boredom was plainly Wren’s lot in life as long as she was on this giant chunk of duracrete and transparisteel.

    What in the name of the Mand’alor was she supposed to do now?


    All of the types of art listed are from the Wookieepedia Art category.

    Jolloq Paxon is, of course, artist Jackson Pollock in spaaaaaace!

    Besom: Mando’a insult; a person with poor hygiene and/or manners
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  2. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host Who Loves Fanfics & RPGs star 7

    Aug 31, 2004
    [face_laugh] How very realistic - Wren's opinions on the museum and the oh-so-boring park, which is not really a park anyhow. ;)
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  3. Findswoman

    Findswoman Force Ghost star 5

    Feb 27, 2014
    Oh, this is off to such a fun start! :D Could there be a more perfect choice of character and scenario for the "ennui" prompt, given what we know from the Ronen diary and your other Wraz stories about Wren's complete lack of interest in the art her mama dearest became so famous for (which is just such a fun juxtaposition anyway)? :) Oh gosh, yes, when you're eight and stuck at a place with your family that you wouldn't have chosen to go to, it really is the kind of deep-seated, existential boredom that can be called "ennui." :p Not that Wren's not trying while she's still in the gallery —she's really giving the "certain point of view" approach the old college try with the head cocking, squinting, etc.! Though it's arguable that she's onto something..
    ...because honestly, that's a pretty good description of some similar artworks in this not-far-away galaxy! :p (Plus, Jolloq Paxon. JOLLOQ PAXON!!1! [face_rofl] [face_rofl] [face_rofl] I wonder if Wren might get more out of L'oi Riekhtenshteyn! ;))

    Even in this short chapter you've gotten a lot across about the family dynamic that's at work here. We've got Sabine and wonderful, beautiful, perfect Bellona, who seem like birds (!) of a feather, with their brightly colored hair and attire and their shared interest in all those HIGH ARTWORKS. And then there's Wren, who looks and feels like the galaxy's biggest third wheel. Having that feeling in a group of friends is bad enough; having it within your own family, where you can't get away so easily, has got to be extra rough. I have a feeling that this isn't the first bickering match these two sisters have had. But I'm glad that Sabine responds to her daughters' bickering in a way that's fair to both of them and doesn't immediately place blame on Wren; I think even though she outwardly seems to have more in common with Bellona, she's inwardly aware that she's got a lot in common with Wren, too. (Which she does!)

    Finally, I love how you made boredom/ennui a leitmotif of the whole chapter—it doesn't magically go away once Wren gets outside to the overmanicured, overurbanized excuse for a park (unfortunately totally in-character for Coruscant)! Instead, it gets not only worse but even "what in the name of the Mand'alor" cliffhanger worse! :p And again, that's totally what it can feel like at that age: the boredom just takes. over. everything. How indeed will Wren get out of this and get her groove back? Do let us know soon, and thanks so much for sharing this wonderful contribution to the Search Your Feelings challenge! =D=
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2020
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  4. Thumper09

    Thumper09 Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Dec 9, 2001
    Great start! I can totally get how an art museum could be a Death Sentence for Fun to an eight-year-old. :p Wren lasted longer than I probably would have at that age, and I even like art. :p

    I loved the line about it being the deepest, murkiest murk of boredom ever for her clan. At least she's making history!

    I'm curious to see how she's going to cope with the sterile, unexciting park after her bout with the art museum. More straight lines for her to look at, it seems. Looking forward to more!
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  5. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Nov 22, 1999
    Thanks! :) Yep, Wren has some very strong opinions--kind of like her mother in that respect, except that her opinions are the opposite of Sabine's on things that exist purely for aesthetic reasons.
    Wren was the first character who came to mind for this prompt. As I said, Wren has very strong opinions and she is not afraid to share them. I'm not sure Sabine knows exactly what to make of her young daughter's disinterest in art, especially given that Bellona is as enthusiastically interested as her sister is disinterested. (Though I bet Wren would enjoy something like the Hall of Armor at the Chicago Art Institute.) She really does try; she'd like to be in on this secret language that her mom and sister share, but it just doesn't make any sense to her. What's so great about paintings that could have been done by lizard-monkeys? :p
    She would at least e able to tell what his art work was, and that would be a huge plus for Wren :D (She shares a bit of my feelings on abstract expressionism. I can admire some of it on technical grounds, but it's not my thing)

    Oh, Sabine has a lot in common with Wren. I've been re-watching the first season of Rebels, which I haven't watched in some time, and it's amazing how much of S1 Sabine I channeled into Wren [face_laugh] (The episode where Sabine harangues Hera about not trusting her because she needs to know who Fulcrum is...) It's definitely not the first time her daughters have gotten into on this subject, and even if Sabine doesn't understand why Wren finds art so dull, she's not trying to force her into "enjoying" it. She's willing to give Wren an alternative rather than make her "suffer".

    The park seemed like such a good idea, didn't it? "Park" is kind of generous name for it; it's really more of a plaza stuck between Important Coruscant Buildings like the Senate and the Museum and it wasn't designed with younglings in mind. boredom can become such an all consuming thing, and not just for kids!
    Thank you so much! :D Yeah, I think even the most museum-loving child would be daunted by the tour of the Galaxy's Great Masterpieces, complete with running commentary from overbearing older sister. Wren's the kind of kid who'd rather be doing things than cooped up inside looking at paintings.

    [face_laugh] That's one way to look at it! She shall go down in history as the Most Bored Ever!

    She's a pretty resourceful kid and has the Mandalorian tenacity in spades, so she's not giving up yet!
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  6. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Nov 22, 1999
    Thanks to @Findswoman for beta-reading @};-
    Chapter 2

    Wren wandered aimlessly down the park’s featureless paths, reading the bronzium plaques under each tree for lack of anything better to do, when she spotted a silver-leafed galek tree just like the ones she climbed back home on Ordo. Only not just like—this poor sad little specimen had been trimmed down and tamed into a meek-looking shadow of the spreading giant in whose branches she’d built the makeshift tree fort that was her refuge from bossy older sisters. Wren felt sorry for this lonely Mandalorian exile—so far away from home, just like her! Well, they could be bored together, and at least it could have some proper Mando company for a while.

    There was a stick about the length of Wren’s forearm beneath the galek—apparently the maintenance droid hadn’t done its rounds yet. She picked it up, tucked it into her belt, and swung herself up onto the lowest branch, which was just wide enough for her to sit astride. Once she’d settled herself comfortably, Wren took the stick, unsheathed her kal from where it was hanging on her belt, and started peeling the bark off the stick. It wasn’t the most exciting pastime, but it gave her hands something to do. And it beat the pants off having to stare at “art” that was nothing more than blobs of paint while listening to Mom and Bellona expand on how incredibly genius it was. Besides, it felt good to be out here instead of cooped up in the museum. She felt like she could breathe again, like she was herself again.

    Wren sat with her back against the galek’s trunk and her legs dangling on either side of the branch, and whittled diligently until the skittering sound of a stone bouncing down the duracrete path caught her attention. She stuck her kal in back her belt, and shimmied up to the next highest branch, still holding the stick in her left hand, so she could get a better look at who or what was coming. Wren held onto the trunk, pulled herself upright and leaned forward to peer out through the silvery leaves.

    A dark-haired boy about her own age was walking listlessly down the path, kicking the rock as he went. He was tall and gangly, all arms and legs, and he wore a green tunic that was too short in the sleeves even though it looked practically new. He gave the stone another half-hearted boot and heaved a sigh that was so dejected, so lethargic, so completely and utterly bored that Wren knew she’d just found a kindred spirit. She shouted down to him, “Hi!”

    “Wha—?!” Startled by the sudden noise, the boy stumbled backwards, somehow managed to trip over his own feet and fell onto his backside, where he gaped up at Wren leaning out of the galek tree and waving her stick. “Whoa! How did you get way up there?”

    “I climbed.” She would have figured that was pretty obvious. Not like she had a jet-pack or anything. (Yet. Someday she would, but she wouldn’t use it for silly things like climbing trees.)

    “Really?!” The boy’s eyes grew wide, as amazed as if she had told him she’d flown up with a jetpack. “You can do that? They’re not just there to be pretty?”

    “I didn’t see anything that said I couldn't,” Wren answered, tossing her head dismissively. “And no one stopped me.” She decided not to mention that she hadn’t really checked to see if there was anything and that no grownups had been around to see her scramble up into the galek. Because odds were there was a list of rules ten klicks long posted somewhere. And the kind of people who made parks with no playground equipment probably had strong feelings about younglings doing anything that even remotely resembled fun.

    “Cool!” Even though Wren couldn’t imagine anything more ordinary, it seemed that climbing a tree was enough to get her some major cred in this kid’s eyes. “Can you show me how to do that?”

    “Um, okay…” Wren swung down to the lower branch and sprang down to the ground. “All you have to do is grab this branch, brace your foot against the trunk, and pull yourself up,” she explained, demonstrating, and hopped back down. “See? It’s easy. You try.”

    The boy squared his shoulders and sized up the tree as if he was preparing to scale the Manari Mountains. He grabbed the branch, planted his foot on the trunk, pushed himself up, slipped, scrabbled up, and slipped again. Finally, he hoisted himself up, but instead of putting one leg to straddle it, he threw himself across the branch, and wound up with his head and torso hanging on one side while his legs flailed on the other. “I’m all right!” he assured Wren, even as his face started to turn red from the blood rushing to his head. After a minute of struggling, he managed to pull himself into a seated position, holding onto the trunk like an ysalimir on an olbio tree. He grinned widely, even though he was red-faced and panting.

    “Wow! This is so awesome! I didn’t even think squirrels were allowed to climb these trees—like maybe there were electro-force fields around them or something because nobody touches them, ever!” the boy gushed as Wren swung herself onto the branch beside him. She felt a little sad for him in a way, because if climbing a tree—and not even a very big one at that—was this exciting to him, then life on Coruscant was even more boring than she thought. “Oh, um...” the boy paused and held out a hand (keeping a tight hold on the galek tree with the other). “Hi, I’m Kazuda.”

    She took the proffered hand with a proper Mando handshake that made him wince a little. “Wren.”

    “Wren? Like the bird?”

    “Like the clan. Clan Wren is my mother’s clan. I’m Mandalorian,” she explained at Kazuda’s quizzical glance.

    If a girl who climbed trees had been impressive to him, a tree-climbing Mandalorian girl was enough to make his head explode. “Really?!” Kazuda exclaimed, eyes big and round as bucklers. “Do you have all the armor and everything, too? Not here—I guess that would make it kind of hard to climb trees—but like at home or something?”

    "No, I don’t get to wear beskar’gam until I’m thirteen.” There was more to being a Mando than just wearing armor, but for some reason that was the only thing aruetii seemed to care about. At least he hadn’t asked about bounty hunting, because that was so lame and way overdone. “I have my kal, though,” she offered, unsheathing the short blade. “You want to see it?”

    Kazuda’s eyes got big again and he reached out before drawing his hand back with a gusty sigh. “I’d better not. My sister says I can’t be trusted with sharp objects,” he said, and Wren sighed, too. Sisters… Apparently they were bossy know-it-alls the Galaxy over.

    “So… now that we’re up here, what do we do?” Kazuda asked, assessing the tree, their relative position in it, and the distance to the ground.

    “I don’t know,” Wren admitted. “But whatever we do, it’s got to be more fun than the art museum.” She didn’t care what her mom and Bellona thought, half of those paintings were nothing more than ugly squiggles and splatters—and that was not real art. Not like Mom’s art, where you could tell what things were most of the time. What good was art if it wasn’t nice to look at?

    Kazuda looked crestfallen and he heaved another sigh. “We were supposed to go to the museum today—not the art museum, the Republic Museum of Spaceflight. But my father has too much Senator stuff to do.”

    “There’s a spaceflight museum?” Now that actually sounded interesting. Why couldn’t her family go to fun places like that instead of just boring, stupid art museums and more boring, stupid art museums? Maybe she could convince Dad to take her there the next time Bellona wanted to see another gallery.

    “Oh yeah!” Kazuda brightened. “They’ve got ships from all over and from way back during the wars—like the Old Republic Civil War, not just the Clone Wars and the Rebellion. There’s the hall of hyperspace explorers, and a bunch of flight simulators and you can pretend you’re flying during all kinds of situations: asteroid fields, the Kessel Run, even flying through the Death Star at the Battle of Endor! And—”

    “Kazuda Xiono! What do you think you’re doing?!”

    A strident voice like a screeching lorikeet interrupted his enthusiastic recitation and, in what seemed to be his default reaction to sudden noises, Kazuda jumped like a startled Loth-cat. And when he did, he let go of the tree trunk, slipped sideways and pitched backwards—right out of the tree.
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  7. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host Who Loves Fanfics & RPGs star 7

    Aug 31, 2004
    RAISSA RAISSA RAISSA! I AM SO HAPPY you were able to post with the wacked out DRL stuff happening in these days! And what a fun chapter too! My goodness, I wouldn't mind going to that space museum [face_laugh] But :eek: that was one heckuva last line. [face_worried] Don't ever startle someone when they're up a tree! :eek:
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020 at 4:55 PM
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  8. Thumper09

    Thumper09 Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Dec 9, 2001
    Boredom and overbearing sisters: the two universal constants.

    I really liked the detail about how not only did Kazuda not know how to climb trees, but the notion of doing it hadn't even occurred to him. It's things like that that really help to characterize someone who (presumably) has spent a lot of his childhood on a world like Coruscant. An activity that's second-nature to someone with more rural experience is unfathomable to someone who's only known trees as tightly-managed decorations, if they know them at all.

    Wren and Kazuda are hitting it off pretty well. :) Looks like they could learn a lot from each other if they're able to develop a friendship. Though the tumble from the tree might cause some issues-- hopefully he has a soft landing! [face_worried]

    Great update!

    ...I wanna go to the spaceflight museum....... :(
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