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Saga The Broken Boy and the Blind Master

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by gaarastar58, Nov 9, 2015.

  1. gaarastar58

    gaarastar58 Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Dec 19, 2010
    An injury in an illegal podrace had left Anakin Skywalker paralyzed and struggling to cope with his self identity. A short story featuring Anakin, Master Yoda and Master Kilith Forgo (OC). As always any helpful comments or ideas are welcome and if you've enjoyed reading please check out the links in my signature for my other stories.


    The Broken Boy and the Blind Master

    Anakin fought for breath against the metal crushing against his chest. Blood seeped into his eye from a cut on his forehead. The weight of the damaged podracer pinned his body against the duracrete slabs. Smoke belched from the wrecked engines and he felt the heat of flames. He tried to move but his body shrieked with pain, argent lines of agony shooting up his back. He screamed for help. The pain blinded him, making it hard to think. His stodgy brain was able to process only one clear thought:

    I can’t feel my legs.

    Part 1

    A sharp spasm jolted Anakin awake, shattering his nightmare into fragments of reflected colour. He lay on the bed, staring up at the lights of Galactic City playing on the ceiling. The deep rumble of passing traffic was a constant background hum on Coruscant no matter where you went and the familiar sound comforted him.

    Levering his body up on his elbows he glanced at the illuminated chrono on his bedside table. It was still the middle of the night and dawn was a few hours away. Coruscant was in the summer cycle of its orbit and he could already see a band of light blue sky to the east were the sun would rise. He brushed a tear off his cheek. It had been seven months, but the nightmares refused to leave him alone.

    Dragging back the covers he looked down at his legs. They lay limp and useless on the mattress, skewed to one side. There was always a part of him that hoped it had all been just a nightmare, that he would wake up and find that everything was back to normal, but as he stared and willed his muscles to move reality settled in.

    With effort he hauled his paralyzed lower limbs to the edge of the bed and dumped them over the side. Stretching out with the force he activated the powerchair that hovered in the corner of the room and pulled it towards the bed. Shuffling his backside to the edge he heaved his body into the padded seat and gathered his dangling legs onto the footplate. The simple exertion of transferring himself from bed to chair was a struggle and he inwardly cursed himself.

    He knew that he shouldn’t be so harsh. He had come a long way since the podracer accident which had severed his spinal cord, leaving him paralysed from the chest down. He had worked hard to regain some use of his hands, although they could still be stubborn and the natural dexterity he had been granted was a thing of the past. It was amazing really. When he had been dragged from the wrecked pod by a fire crew his whole body was in shock and he hadn’t been able to move at all. It had taken a lot of hard work but he had got himself out of the Temple infirmary, and he had been given a room of his own, albeit adjoining the medical wing in case he needed help.

    Twitching the control on the arms of his powerchair he moved to the window and stared out across the glittering vista of Galactic City. It was always more beautiful at night and even three years since he had come to live here Anakin couldn’t stop comparing it to the drab backwater town of Mos Espa where he had spent his childhood. That seemed like a dozen lifetimes ago.

    A spasm jerked his left leg and it quivered, rolling off the footplate, his toes drooping towards the floor. With a sigh he bundled it up and put it back in its place, resting his hand on his thigh, feeling the atrophied muscles in his leg. Bunching his fingers into a fist he hammered his leg, half with frustration and half because the novelty of not being able to feel part of his own body still hadn’t worn off. He still had very little sensory function in his legs and the Jedi Healers warned him that it would probably remain that way. Even so he still experienced as significant amount of pain as his central nervous system shot chaotic messages up and down his damaged spinal column.

    Life was so unfair.

    Turning away from the window he headed for the door and keyed it open. He had taken to wandering the temple late at night when he woke up from a nightmare. Few Jedi were awake at this hour, so he had the place virtually to himself. Fiddling with the controls of his powerchair he punched it up to its maximum speed and took off, zooming down the arched corridors, breaking hard in the corners. His recovery had granted him a great deal of spare time and he’d tinkered with the power output of the chair, giving it a bit more oomph. It wasn’t podracing but it was better than crawling along at the limited speed the chair had originally been programmed with.

    Podracing.

    His mother had always hated it when he raced, afraid that one day he would get himself hurt or killed. He had to laugh. It was podracing which had freed him from slavery on Tatooine and now it was podracing which had caged him in this powerchair. Oh the irony.

    He had nobody to blame but himself. Craving adventure and excitement he had sneaked out of the temple looking for thrills and he had found them in the Coruscant racing underworld, riding swoopbikes along illegal courses through the city factory districts. When he had discovered a podracing circuit he had been in heaven. Nothing compared to the adrenaline rush he got streaking through the air at 800km/h with the wind tearing at his face and clothes, dodging obstacles and other racers. Just as he had back on Tatooine he had quickly gained notoriety as the only human pilot in the core.

    Then in his final race his main compressor had exploded, taking the core fuel tank with it and ending his podracing career, as well as his career as a Jedi. He should have died that day, and it was probably only his Force-honed reflexes that had saved his life as his control pod spun out of control and ploughed into the ground, eventually landing upside down with him pinned underneath.
    He banked hard around a corner. His chair’s repulsor system buzzed with the effort of keeping the chair upright and only the straps around his legs, waist and chest prevented him from tumbling onto the floor. He grinned to himself, wondering if he could organise a powerchair race against some of his fellow Jedi. Obi-Wan always said he was a bad influence on the younglings and he was probably right.

    Thinking about his master brought another pang of hurt which had nothing to do with his injuries. Obi-Wan was off again on some stupid mission leaving him all alone. In the past few months he had seen hardly anything of his master apart from a few brief holomessages. He missed Obi-Wan terribly, and yet when he was around Anakin felt so frustrated by his presence and his attempts to make him feel better that he was glad when Obi-Wan was sent away again. He could sense his master’s disappointment in him, like having a rancor squatting in the corner of the room that nobody paid attention to, even though they all knew it was there. He had expected Obi-Wan to be furious with him for being so stupid, but his calmness and quiet sorrow were far worse than anything Anakin could have imagined.

    Drawing to a halt at an intersection, Anakin cocked his head to listen. There was some noise coming from the direction of the main refectory, which was open at all hours for Jedi returning from missions. He headed in that direction, emerging into the large domed room which was lined with benches. Droids scurried to and fro in the kitchen area, preparing for the early morning meal. Soon the room would fill up with Jedi Knights and their apprentices, getting ready for another day of training. All Anakin had to look forward to was working in the Archives alongside the aged Jocasta Nu, running errands or cataloguing old holo-books. It was good to have something to keep him busy, but Anakin still felt useless and depressed. All his life he had craved adventure and now he was just a stupid boy who had ruined his life for a cheap thrill. At best he was an object of pity for the other Jedi, and although they treated him with respect and courtesy, Anakin could sense their indifference to him. He had become an exile in residence.

    Pushing these thoughts to the back of his mind, he headed for hot drinks dispenser and poured himself a mug of hot chocolate. Balancing it on the arm of his powerchair he went to one of the benches. Taking a sip of the hot liquid he combed a hand through his close-cropped hair and fiddled with the long braid of hair which singled him out as a Padawan.

    ‘Unable to sleep, young Skywalker?’

    Anakin’s head snapped around and he looked down to see the diminutive but charismatic figure of Master Yoda staring up at him.

    ‘Uh, yes Master.’

    ‘In pain are you?’

    ‘No, well yes, but I… I had a nightmare.’ Part of Anakin expected a lecture about fear, a lecture he’d been treated to many times, but Yoda simply pulled his long ears back and sighed.

    ‘That is understandable.’ Hobbling to the bench, Yoda clambered up to sit opposite Anakin. ‘Do you dream about your accident, hmm?’

    ‘Yes Master.’

    ‘Blame yourself for what happened, do you?’

    ‘It was my fault, I was an idiot.’

    Yoda tapped his chin with a clawed finger. ‘Agree with that I would.’

    A smile twitched at Anakin’s cheek. ‘What about you Master, are you having trouble sleeping?’

    ‘Meditating I was. Sensed you I did. Many nights now I have sensed you, roving the temple at night, searching.’

    ‘Searching?’

    ‘For answers?’

    Anakin shrugged and cupped his hands around his mug, enjoying the warmth which spread through his fingers. ‘I just needed to get out of my room, I wasn’t looking for anything.’

    ‘How find you working with Madam Jocasta?’

    ‘It’s alright I suppose.’

    ‘Not exciting enough for you?’

    ‘I didn’t say that,’ said Anakin. He didn’t know why he was bothering to lie to Yoda, the ancient Jedi Master was impossible to deceive.

    Yoda hummed to himself, tapping a claw on the surface of the bench. ‘Very hard this has been for you Anakin. Hard to accept. You are always seeking excitement, but you cannot blame yourself. Foolish to enter that race it was but worse to deny your true nature.’

    Anakin’s head came up. ‘What do you mean?’

    'A very bad idea it is to try and suppress your true nature. Lead to frustration and anger it will. Know you I do Anakin. Cruel you are not, greedy you are not. But if you try to ignore your feelings, these things you would become.’

    ‘You mean if I try to force myself to be something I’m not it would be bad for me?’

    Yoda nodded. ‘You were true to yourself, no shame in that is there.’

    ‘It wasn’t very Jedi of me though.’

    ‘Perfect, nobody is.’

    ‘I guess not.’ Anakin stared into the bottom of his mug and swirled the hot chocolate around. ‘I guess I’m just afraid of being useless now.’

    Yoda leaned back and closed his eyes and Anakin felt a subtle shift in the Force as Yoda opened himself to help it guide him towards an answer. The large green eyes opened and looked at Anakin, through him, peering at him with through the Force as well as looking at him physically.

    ‘As always clouded your path is Anakin, but help you I will try. Do you know Master Forgo?’

    Anakin shook his head.

    ‘Meet him you should, learn from him.’

    ‘Does that mean I’m excused from Archive duty?’

    ‘Attend to that you must also,’ said Yoda and Anakin caught the hint of a smile around the wrinkled mouth.

    ‘It was worth a try I suppose,’ sighed Anakin.




    To be continued...
     
  2. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    =D= Fantastic and very realistic physical and emotional depictions of the aftermath of such a life-altering injury! Loved Yoda's blend of humor and compassion. :) And tickled that Anakin, like Luke, likes hot chocolate. Looking forward to the upcoming meeting.

    This reminds me of "Schism" by Jedi Peregrine, where student and teacher/mentor help one another grow. :cool: Character development type stuff is always entertaining! @};-
     
  3. KELIA

    KELIA Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Very nice beginning.

    I can see how frustrated paralysis would be for Anakin and it’ll be interesting to see how he comes to terms with his condition.

    A full and active life he can have if he finds the right path.

    Looking forward to more

    =D==D==D==D=
     
  4. Lady_Misty

    Lady_Misty Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 21, 2007
    I wasn't sure what I was expecting when I opened this but this is interesting and Yoda is wise to tell Anakin that denying his true self will lead him to a Dark Place.

    Please tag me when you update.
     
  5. gaarastar58

    gaarastar58 Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Dec 19, 2010
    Thanks for the feedback, I felt like this was a slow beginning but really wanted to show Anakin at his lowest point. Yoda is a wonderful character to write, I now want to do more stories with him involved! Haha in my regular writing (mostly YA) I'm always accused of my characters mulling stuff over while drinking hot chocolate.

    Cheers, as someone with a disability this issue crops up a lot in my writing, I like to explore how it changes the way characters approach situations. Especially for Anakin this is a massive thing, going from being so naturally talented and active to struggling with even basic tasks. As you say, there is nothing to stop him from achieving his potential.

    Thanks for reading!
     
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  6. gaarastar58

    gaarastar58 Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Dec 19, 2010
    The Broken Boy and the Blind Master - Part II


    Wind streamed through Anakin’s hair. He nudged the control sticks of the podracer to avoid a factory spire belching smoke. He kept his mouth shut in a tight, thin line. Swallowing an insect while travelling at these speeds would cause a momentary distraction which could prove fatal, even to a gifted racer like him. He pulled the podracer back on course, focussing all his attention on the exhaust vents of the racer ahead of him. They flared white hot, channelling massive power through the twin engine pods. He smiled, jerking his hands forward and accelerating to full power. He had spent months repairing and modifying his racer and all his hard work paid off as he breezed past. This was too easy. He glanced down as a warning light winked on his pods control panel, notifying him of a problem with the starboard nacelle’s fuel intake. He took his hand off the control stick to check his engine status when the starboard nacelle exploded. The heat and shock of the blast smashed the breath from his lungs and the world turned sideways as the pod spun out of control. He felt the impact as his pod ploughed into the permacrete and flipped over, the metal screaming. Fragments of the starboard nacelle zinged through the air and he realised he was going to die. Pain exploded across his body as the second impact came and then his port nacelle went up in a brilliant flash of tortured metal and flame and his world went black.


    Anakin gripped the rail of his hospital bed, the simple act of holding his body on its side draining his energy, while a nurse shrugged a pair of loose fitting trousers up over his backside. He rolled back and sucked in a deep breath, feeling weak and useless. The nurse bundled up the sodden inco-pad he had been wearing and dropped into the garbage disposal unit. Anakin averted his eyes. He could deal with not being able to walk, with needing help to get dressed and feed himself but the loss of control over his own bodily functions was something he struggled with.

    He looked down at the thin clear tube which snaked out from beneath his shirt. Since he had no control of his bladder a cath had been surgically inserted into his abdomen to drain urine, but today the tube had become kinked and had leaked, soaking his clothes. He swallowed the bitter taste of embarrassment. Fortunately he had been in the infirmary wing of the temple and a nurse had been on hand to assist him to change his wet clothes. She had dumped his dirty tunic and trousers in a bundle on the floor. Clearing his mind, he reached out towards them with the force. The wet garments rose into the air and floated across the room to the linen chute. Sweat broke out across Anakin’s brow but he manged to get his clothes to drop neatly into the chute. They tumbled out of sight, ready to be collected by a droid and sent for cleaning.

    ‘Thanks,’ said the nurse. Like the other non-Jedi staff in the infirmary wing she had a cheery attitude which Anakin sometimes found grating but which he accepted was part of their job. ‘That’s a useful skill to have. I wish all my patients were as helpful as you.’

    Anakin smiled back at her, not because he was pleased by the compliment but more because he had been useful in some small way. He was finding more and more that these tiny victories in independence meant a lot to him, made him feel a little more control over his environment.

    The nurse helped him back into his powerchair, strapping his ankles in to help with the spasms he had been experiencing and making sure that his cath didn’t get pinched between his body and the frame of the chair. The tube fed into a clear collection bag which he could hide beneath his trousers. He thanked her and tapped the controls to move out of his room. His accident had made him late for his meeting with Master Forgo.

    He wasn’t sure what to expect pf the encounter. Yoda had been cagey about what the meeting was meant to accomplish, and even more cagey about Master Forgo himself, although reticence wasn’t exactly uncharacteristic for the diminutive Jedi Master. There were few people that Anakin trusted implicitly, but Yoda was one of them.

    *​

    Anakin knew the layout of the Jedi training grounds well from spending hours of time training with Obi-Wan as well as various other instructors and Masters in everything from levitation to lightsaber technique. He navigated the halls, twitching the controls of his powerchair to pass huddles of students in the corridors, feeling the touch of their curiosity as he passed and trying to ignore the sidelong glances younglings shot in his direction.

    He followed the sound of clashing lightsabers into a wide octagonal chamber. The temple had many such rooms, used for training Jedi in the art of lightsaber combat. Twin statues of venerated Jedi Guardians flanked the arched doorway and Anakin found himself on an upper balcony looking down on the training ground below where a handful of Jedi Knights were sparring with each other, their shimmering blades calibrated to non-lethal settings for safety although Anakin knew from experience that a strike with even a training blade would be painful and even potentially fatal if it struck a vulnerable part of the body such as the neck or kidneys.

    Since his accident he had avoided this place. It was painful, watching other young Jedi practicing skills at which he had once excelled and now would never master. He could still hold a lightsaber but that was about all he could do with it. The spasms that regularly jerked his body from his damaged spinal cord meant that he might easily hurt himself or someone else. Fighting with the traditional Jedi weapon involved the whole body working in union with the energy blade, treating it almost as an extension of the arm.

    A gruff voice echoed across the chamber and a figure wearing the flowing robes of the Jedi stepped out from the shadows.

    ‘No, no, no! This isn’t dancing, it’s combat. You don’t have time for all that fancy prancing and pirouetting, you want to kill him.’ He grabbed one of the students arms and held them up. ‘Strong. Always be strong.’

    ‘Master Windu always says never to try and beat strength with strength,’ said one of the Knights.

    ‘He’s right, but I’m not asking you to hack down a Wroshyr tree. Make your movements strong. Be decisive. Fancy flourishes and showy displays of skill won’t do you any good if your basic technique is flawed. Again.’

    Jedi Master Forgo snorted and stepped back. From his position on the balcony Anakin couldn’t see his expression, the Master’s face was shadowed by a deep hood which hid his face, but he could sense the man’s impatience. The Knights resumed their sparring, but Anakin could tell they weren’t taking the exercise seriously. He wasn’t surprised. In their capacity as galactic peace-keepers the Jedi were often called upon to use their skills in combat but when they did it was mostly against opponents wielding blasters. Melee combat was rare and the Jedi had little practical use for learning lightsaber against lightsaber fighting. In ancient times there had been the Sith and various Dark Jedi to fight but they were reckoned extinct for a millennium or more.

    Anakin knew better than that. It had been a Sith Lord that had slain his first mentor, Qui-Gon Jinn on Naboo and since his death Obi-Wan had been fanatical about improving his lightsaber technique so that next time he faced a Sith he would be ready.

    Shaking his memories aside Anakin stared down at the sparring, watching Master Forgo grow more and more impatient. A young Knight used the force to leap high over his opponent, turned a double-somersault in mid-air and landed behind his partner, their lightsabers meeting with a crackling-hiss.

    ‘Enough, enough, I give up,’ said Forgo, waving his hands. ‘Just because you can leap twenty feet into the air doesn’t mean that you should. The moment your feet leave the ground you’re committed to a move you can’t change. Any opponent with an iota of sense or Force awareness will cut you in half.’

    ‘Yeah but how often are we ever going to face someone like that?’ said one of the Knights.

    Forgo huffed. ‘Alright then, since you seem to know it all let’s try something else. Shall we see if any of you dancers can take on an old man like me?’ The elderly Master stepped into the centre of the arena and drew his lightsaber, fiddled with the settings to make it non-lethal and activated the blade. A green-white shaft of pure energy hummed into life, buzzing as Forgo swung it a few times to loosen his wrist.

    ‘I’ll go easy on you.’

    The scene that followed would be etched into Anakin’s mind for the rest of his life. At first the Knights advanced one at a time, taking the aged Master one-on-one. Lightsabers whirled and clashed, throwing sparks where their energy blades licked each other. Forgo’s weapon became a spinning vortex of green energy, an impenetrable barrier that none of his students could breach. They began to get impatient and threw themselves forward in reckless attacks, trying to outflank the old man, but even six-on-one they didn’t stand a chance. Forgo moved with the prefect balance of economy and ferocity, batting aside their pale attempts to break his defence. His moves were quick and precise, and although his display didn’t look as pretty as the sparring the Knights had been engaged in before, they were far more effective.
    Anakin watched, awestruck, as the young Knight who had scoffed at Forgo swung his blade at the old man, only to have it deflected and receive a crushing kick to the ribs which sent him tumbling to the floor. Soon the chamber was littered with a groaning assortment of Knights in various degrees of pain. Only the old Jedi Master still stood, his lightsaber pointing at the ground, surveying his handiwork.

    ‘Lesson concluded,’ he said, shutting off the weapon and returning it to a clip on his belt.

    Anakin made his way to the lower level, passing the group of Knights as they limped and hobbled their way out of the chamber, groaning and clutching bruised ribs. He found Master Forgo nursing his left arm, grumbling to himself.

    ‘Master Forgo?’

    The old man’s hood twitched in his direction. ‘What, what do you want?’

    ‘My name’s Anakin Skywalker…’

    ‘I know who you are. I could sense you across all the way across the temple, your head’s like a kriffing whirlwind.’ Forgo flexed his fingers and groaned. ‘Blast it I must be getting old.’

    ‘I thought you were pretty amazing.’

    ‘No need to patronize me boy. There was a time I could’ve taken on twice as many Jedi Knights without even breaking a sweat but there you go. Ah, not many appreciate the art of lightsaber combat these days.’

    ‘My master does.’

    ‘Who’s he?’

    ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi.’

    ‘Never heard of him.’ Forgo rolled his shoulders and Anakin winced as a couple of vertebrae cracked. ‘Wait a minute. Kenobi… I’ve heard that name... Qui-Gon Jinn’s apprentice?’

    Anakin nodded.

    ‘Eh? Speak up boy.’

    ‘Yes.’

    ‘Ah, of course. He defeated the Sith Lord didn’t he? Impressive. Most impressive. That’s exactly why we need to preserve the old techniques. When the Sith return they won’t be carrying blasters, and if we don’t know how to defend ourselves we’ll be in trouble. One Sith Lord could make mincemeat of most of the Jedi in this Temple.’
    Anakin swallowed the spike of anxiety that poked his gut. Although the Sith were widely believed to be extinct the mysterious warrior who had fought against Obi-Wan proved otherwise.

    ‘Wielded a saber-staff as well, didn’t he? Now that’s a weapon you don’t see often nowadays. Very hard to master. Anyway, what is it I can do for you?’

    ‘Master Yoda wanted me to meet you.’

    ‘Oh, he did did he? Obviously he thinks I’ve got nothing better to do. Fortunately for you I’m in a good mood, plus I could use your help.’

    Anakin was stunned. ‘My help?’

    ‘Well I’m not talking to the floor am I? At first when Yoda mentioned you I wasn’t sure but… yeah… I think you’ll do. I need someone who feels like he’s got a tornado inside his head.’

    Anakin twitched uncomfortably. Growing up in the Temple meant that he was used to being under scrutiny. Masters like Yoda or Mace Windu had this way of making him feel like they could look inside of him and see all of his darkest fears and hopes, but he knew they could only sense vague impressions, not actually read his thoughts, for which he was very grateful.

    ‘You hide a great deal,’ said Forgo. ‘Things you don’t wish others to see. I sense great fear in you, and great pain.’

    Lifting his hands he drew back his hood and for the first time Anakin was able to see his face. The Jedi Master’s face was a mass of scar tissue, half of his nose was gone and his eyes stared blindly out of their sockets, surrounded by cracked and wrinkled skin. Forgo smiled.

    ‘Not exactly pretty, am I?’

    ‘Sorry, I didn’t…’

    ‘Stop apologising will you. I’ve been living with this face long enough and I’ve encountered enough people’s reactions to know it ain’t nice to look at, but I’ve learned not to be offended.’

    Anakin was thinking back to the impressive display the old man had shown against the Knights. He had moved gracefully, not with the shuffling footsteps he had seen blind beggars using back on Tatooine.

    ‘How did you…?’ he started to say and then stopped himself.

    ‘How did I defeat those pups earlier?’ asked Forgo with a smile. ‘The Force. Much like the Miraluka of the ancient Republic I have learned to use it to see the world around me on a different plane. When I look at you I can see the Force literally cascading around your body. The Force is strong in you, young one, but I sense that your mind is clouded by your pain.’

    Anakin closed his fist around a bunch of his trousers.

    ‘You still blame yourself for your injuries. You know, despite traditional Jedi thinking, it’s okay to be angry and frustrated with yourself.’

    Anakin’s head came up to look at the ruined face staring down at him.

    ‘The trick is not letting that anger overpower you and turn into self-pity. Now then, how do you feel about helping me on an assignment? It’ll involve leaving the Temple for a couple of days.’

    ‘Sure,’ said Anakin, keen for anything that would get him out of Archive duty.

    ‘Be warned, this will be a difficult mission. If you don’t think you’re ready I’ll understand.’

    ‘I’m ready.’

    ‘We’ll see.’


    Part III coming soon...
    @ Lady_Misty
     
  7. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    I like Forgo. :) :) He has a lot of snark and wisdom as well. Channeling strong emotions properly - that's one lesson Anakin needs to learn early!
     
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  8. Lady_Misty

    Lady_Misty Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 21, 2007
    Wow, I think I like this Master Forgo.

    I like how he doesn't allow his lack of sight to hinder him. It is unwise ti underestimate anyone.
     
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  9. darth_treyvah

    darth_treyvah Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Dec 26, 2005
    The horrible irony here is that young Anakin is dealing with a similar situation to what he would have experienced as Vader. Vader himself lost three biological limbs and I think he suffered a spinal injury as well in addition to the burns all over his body. He had to spend a massive amount of time retooling his fighting style and even how he pretty much *existed.*

    Your Anakin doesn't have Vader's years of experience, but he also doesn't have *that* kind of psychological damage. I also find it fascinating that the Jedi Order is actually treating Anakin for his injuries and hasn't already shipped him off to the Jedi Service Corps (if that exists in your universe, as I believe you can only find it in Legends continuity now). But the Jedi have not given up on Anakin: which is really refreshing to see given how they acted in the Prequels and some of the Clone Wars towards him. Here you actually get a sense of their compassion and their belief that everyone in the Order can make a difference and has a role to play. Besides, Anakin still has his potential: he is now probably going to do something different with it.

    Also, Master Forgo is pretty awesome and I definitely want to know more about him. The Order could have used a lot more Jedi like him.
     
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  10. KELIA

    KELIA Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Yoda is wise indeed.

    Sending Anakin out of the Temple and showing him he is useful and valuable is a brilliant way to help him accept his disability.

    I hope he will overcome whatever difficulties he encounters.

    Great update

    =D==D==D==D=
     
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  11. gaarastar58

    gaarastar58 Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Dec 19, 2010
    Thanks for the feedback guys!

    He has certainly developed a lot since I first made him up, I think I could see him taking the place of Qui-Gon in Anakin's life.

    I think there may be more than a little Hundred Eyes in him!

    I always felt like the Order from the PT was a bit harsh and not at all compassionate. A lot of their humanity got sucked out too, eg: the difference between Yoda on the PT and the OT is remarkable. Pt Yoda had no sense of humor at all!

    I wanted to explore the struggle that Anakin is going though but also that he is more than his disability. Yoda is wise enough to know that nothing can hold him back for long if he sets his mind to something, all Anakin needs is some support. In an early draft of this story it was Obi-Wan who encouraged Anakin but I feel like he would have even more trouble dealing with Anakin's injuries than Anakin himself, which is why I created Forgo.
     
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  12. gaarastar58

    gaarastar58 Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Dec 19, 2010
    @ Lady_Misty

    The Broken Boy and the Blind Master - Part III


    The room was dimly lit. Anakin lay on a raised bed in the centre of the room surrounded by blinking lights and machinery which was keeping him alive. If not for his Force bond with the boy, Obi-Wan might not have recognised him. Anakin’s face was a mass of bruises and cuts, all puffed up and discoloured. His legs were wrapped in bandages and his head was cradled in a support brace to limit further damage to his spinal cord.

    Obi-Wan approached the bed and touched the boy’s hand. Anakin’s eyes were closed and seeing him lying motionless nearly broke Obi-Wan. He leaned in close to whisper in the boy’s ear, to let him know that he wasn’t alone, as much for his own comfort as for Anakin’s.

    ‘What have you been up to this time?’ he said. He wanted Anakin to open his eyes and flash that cocky self-assured smile up at him, the one that appeared no matter how bad the situation. But Anakin didn’t respond. He just lay there and Obi-Wan fought the wave of guilt which threatened to surge over him like an angry tide. He should have kept a tighter leash on his apprentice, should’ve worked harder to keep him out of trouble, should’ve…

    ‘Stop it,’ he said to himself. That kind of thinking wasn’t going to help. He knew, better than anyone else, that it was impossible to stop Anakin from doing something once he’d set his mind to it. That, he realised was one of the reasons he cared for the boy so much. He had the same indomitable spirit that Qui-Gon had possessed. Thinking about his old master increased Obi-Wan’s sadness. Qui-Gon would never have allowed this to happen, he would have taken better care of Anakin. But Qui-Gon was dead, leaving him all alone to train and care for the boy lying motionless on the bed next to him. By allowing this to happen to Anakin he had betrayed the one man who had always believed in him.


    Anakin weaved his way through the dense crowd of humans and aliens thronging the marketplace. He nudged the controls of his powerchair, scooting out of the way of a thickset man carrying a crate of lurid fruit. The stalls lining the street were selling everything from droid parts to freshly cooked shaak meat. Vendors competed with each other, calling out to passers-by to come and view their wares. The scent of spiced gizka from a nearby stall made the hairs on the inside of his nose shrivel. When he had first arrived on Coruscant Anakin could have become lost for days in this mass, investigating all the different species and products, getting caught up in all the excitement of market day. Even now after several years in Galactic City he still experienced a sense of wonder at the sheer amount of stuff on sale. For a former slave in was almost overwhelming.

    Fiddling with the arm-mounted control he headed after Master Forgo, who was nearly out of sight in the crowd. He slid easily through the melee, sidestepping left and right to avoid bumping into people. Nobody would ever have guessed he was blind. Anakin on the other hand was struggling to negotiate his way through the jostling crowd that was focussed entirely on their own individual destinations and weren’t paying attention to much else. Certainly they weren’t paying attention to the boy in the powerchair that they couldn’t see until they were right on top of him. Plenty of times people stumbled into him or caught their ankles on his footrest. Some of them muttered an apology and moved on but others glared at him as if he had intentionally rammed his chair into them.

    The attitudes of some people irritated him. Did they think he wouldn’t notice them staring at him, or the condescending smiles they flashed in his direction? We wove to and fro, feeling hot and bothered and wishing that Forgo would slow up a bit to let him catch up.

    The Jedi Master was waiting for him at a speeder rank. His long Jedi robes billowed in the backdraft as a speeder loaded with a group of tourists roared away from the deck and headed for the bustling air-highway. An empty cab moved along side and popped open the door. Anakin stared dejectedly into the cramped passenger compartment.

    ‘I won’t fit in there.’

    The driver, a Gran, swivelled his triple eye stalks in Anakin’s direction and babbled something. Anakin glanced up at Forgo.

    ‘Do you understand him?’

    ‘Not a word,’ said Forgo. ‘It’s amazing really that with all the different languages and dialects in the galaxy anybody can understand anyone else, don’t you think?

    ‘I suppose so…’ said Anakin. The gran jabbered at him some more, miming something with his hands, and Anakin was reminded of the deep-space trawler pilots that used to come through Watto’s junkyard looking for cheap parts. They spoke a variation of Huttese which required a great deal of pointing and talking loudly to get any sense out of them. The gran stabbed a finger at his powerchair.

    ‘I… don’t think he wants me in his cab.’

    The skin on Forgo’s head wrinkled. ‘Why not?’

    The gran bellowed something at them in faltering Huttese and shot away from the platform. Anakin gazed after the cab, feeling like he’d been punched in the gut.

    ‘What is it?’

    ‘He said he didn’t want my germs in his clean taxi,’ said Anakin.

    'What a shinthu.'

    ‘Eh?’

    ‘Sorry, on my home planet a shinthu is a word for, uh….’ He leaned in close and whispered a word in Anakin’s ear.

    ‘Gross,’ said Anakin, a grin cracking across his face. ‘I didn’t think Jedi Masters used words like that.’

    ‘Only when Master Yoda isn’t around,’ said Forgo, tapping his nose. ‘Hopefully we’ll get a less ignorant and bigoted driver in the next taxi.’

    The next cab which pulled up was an open air model, one which Anakin had no trouble getting his chair into. The taxi even had an anchor-point for a powerchair so that Anakin wouldn’t be jostled around too much.

    ‘Can I ask a question Master?’

    ‘Mmm?’

    ‘Where are we going?’

    ‘The factory district. The Order maintains a small enclave out there. It’s nice and quiet, away from the noise of the city proper.’

    ‘Couldn’t we have just taken a speeder from the Temple? We would’ve got there faster.’

    Forgo shrugged. ‘I suppose so.’

    The speeder moved off. Wind swished through Anakin’s hair and he realised that he had missed the outdoors. He used to love sneaking out of the Temple and plunging into the seething heart of Coruscant in search of adventure. Since his accident he had not left the confines of the ancient building, spending a lot of his time shut away in his room in the infirmary wing or studying manuscripts in the library, trying to convince himself he wasn’t bored. It felt great to be outside again.

    He glanced over at Forgo and found the Jedi Master looking at him. Well, not looking at him, but scrutinising him through the force.

    ‘I’m glad to see you’re feeling better.’

    Anakin shrugged and looked up at the enormous starscrapers whizzing by on either side.

    ‘You know when I first lost my sight I didn’t leave the Temple for a long time either. That was before I fully developed my force-sight and I was constantly bumping into things and falling over. Everyone was very kind to me but I always felt like I was an object of pity. I began frequenting certain parts of the temple, keeping to the places I knew well so that I wouldn’t accidentally walk into a pillar or trip down an unfamiliar step.’

    Forgo leaned in so that his scarred face was close to Anakin’s ‘It would have been easier to take a speeder from the temple, but you needed to get outside into the real world. Life is easy in the Temple. Safe. But you need something more than safe, don’t you Anakin? That’s the reason you were in that podrace. You were looking for something more.’

    Anakin shifted uncomfortably and stared down at his knees. He couldn’t deny what Forgo was saying. Before his accident he would never have been afraid to be outside the Temple, but he didn’t like the idea that his injury had changed him as a person and not just physically.

    ‘You have to give yourself time to heal,’ said Forgo, and for the first time he spoke with a gentle voice. ‘It may take a long time but it will happen.’

    ‘I just don’t like being like this,’ said Anakin, gesturing at legs.

    ‘You aren’t useless. You are still you. You’re not broken. You don’t need to be fixed. You just need to take your time, with an occasional boot up the rear end to push you out of your comfort zone.’

    Anakin’s cheek twitched. Forgo was unlike any other Jedi he had met, even Master Qui-Gon. There was no pretention about him, no drive to repress the emotions that Anakin had struggled with every day since leaving his home and his mother. It felt good to be able to express himself freely. He had tried talking to Obi-Wan about how he felt, but his master was too wrapped up in guilt over what had happened to be of any help to him, and most of the other Jedi offered only vague platitudes which were of no help whatsoever.

    They remained silent for the remainder of the journey, looking out at the vast expanse of Galactic City which stretched from horizon to horizon. The further away from the temple they got the smaller the buildings became and the traffic was less intense. Shorter buildings, still huge by the standards of Anakin’s home planet, dotted the landscape of Coruscant’s factory district. Plumes of gas belched into the sky from chimneys and bulky transport ships lumbered to and fro across the skyline, either bringing fuel for the massive plants which supplied power to this part of Galactic City or removing waste materials for dumping on one of Coruscants many garbage satellites.

    ‘You never said exactly where we were going.’

    ‘The enclave we’re headed to is a small facility for helping Jedi with… individual difficulties. Some of the younglings who are adopted into the Order carry emotional scars from traumatic experiences before they came to the Jedi. We help them to deal with their issues and strengthen their connection to the Force in the process.’

    ‘You think I’m emotionally traumatised?’

    Forgo chuckled. ‘I’ve not brought you here for therapy Anakin.’

    The taxi docked with a tall structure which looked to Anakin’s eyes to be a converted power relay station. Pipes and ducts snaked up the outside of the building, ending in a plasma dissipater at its summit. In an operational relay the spire would be used to shunt energy discharges skywards where they would scatter harmlessly in the lower atmosphere. He unlocked his powerchair from the anchor point on the taxi and drifted onto the landing stage while Forgo paid the driver. Wind gusted up, tangling in Anakin’s air and making Forgo’s robes flap. The Jedi Master turned back to face Anakin and put a hand on his shoulder.

    ‘Anakin Skywalker, welcome to the Misfits Enclave.’
     
  13. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Insightful and true - that Obi-Wan would be too guilty to be of much help right now and platitudes are totally unhelpful. :p Forgo's openness and nuncritical attitude make it easier for Anakin to admit how he's feeling rather than deny and stuff.

    A Misfits Enclave - a clever and very necessary thing I would imagine! @};-
     
  14. darth_treyvah

    darth_treyvah Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Dec 26, 2005
    It almost makes you think that Anakin should have been guided to the Misfits Enclave even before he had his injuries given that he had been a child slave on Tatooine. I am really glad to see this update and I look forward to more.
     
  15. Lady_Misty

    Lady_Misty Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 21, 2007
    I like Forgo.

    It's hard to be 'different' and some people are cruel for different reasons.
     
  16. gaarastar58

    gaarastar58 Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Dec 19, 2010
    I think a lot of the time people are cruel out of pure ignorance. Sometimes they have good intentions, which I can forgive, but a lot of the time peoples lack of compassion is really frightening. The example above of the taxi driver not letting Anakin on board is taken directly from something which happened to a friend of mine. People aren't always aware that their ignorance can be pretty crushing to some people.
     
  17. CheckSix

    CheckSix Jedi Padawan star 1

    Registered:
    Dec 15, 2015
    I very much like your use of dialogue. It's realistic, and you can almost hear the inflection in the characters' voices.

    "Shorter buildings, still huge by the standards of Anakin’s home planet, dotted the landscape of Coruscant’s factory district. Plumes of gas belched into the sky from chimneys and bulky transport ships lumbered to and fro across the skyline, either bringing fuel for the massive plants which supplied power to this part of Galactic City or removing waste materials for dumping on one of Coruscants many garbage satellites." Very Dickens-esque.
     
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  18. gaarastar58

    gaarastar58 Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Dec 19, 2010
    Thanks for the feedback! Yes I like my urban decay, I think it comes from living in central Beijing and breathing in smog for two years.
     
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  19. Chyntuck

    Chyntuck Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 11, 2014
    (Very, very long review follows as part of the Read and Review Tag Challenge)

    So I put this fic on my reading list when you posted Part I, and I had a feeling that this was going to be something different. But then DRL struck etc etc and I never reviewed or even managed to read the new chapters you posted. So here I am three months later, getting ready to put my impression that this is "different" into words, but then...

    ... then you introduced Master Forgo, and I just fell in love with him.

    The duel training scene in Part II where he makes his first appearance is one of those bits of writing I will be returning to in the future, because it's an amazing way to introduce an OC. Master Forgo really makes his entrance with a bang and watching him beat those prancing dancers to a pulp is quite amusing, frankly -- but there's more. At one point you use the word "economy" to describe his movements, and there's something very real there -- in a way it reminded me of blind piano tuners who focus so intently on the task at hand that they're incredibly deft with their tools. In a sense, it's almost too bad that the title includes the word 'blind', because as a reader I assumed that he was blind before I reached the point where it's actually revealed, and the chapter would be even more intriguing if the reader were left to guess what's so particular about this character.

    And this uncanny ability to "work" his surroundings is seen again in the market scene, where Master Forgo just slips through the crowd whereas Anakin struggles. The depiction you make of Anakin's condition is quite merciless, especially in the scene where he wets himself, but there's also the many smaller ways in which he has become obsessed with the body. It's interesting how he pays attention to every detail of Master Forgo's body (arm, fingers, shoulders, vertebrae) before even looking at his face. In that moment, he sees what he would like to have for himself and fails to notice what he has that Master Forgo doesn't.

    (As a side note, as I wrote this review I kept typing 'Master Forego', which leads me to ask if there's a hidden meaning behind the name. I don't know if it was intentional, but I think there is ;) )

    Continuing with Anakin, one small issue I find with this story is that, if I understand correctly, he should be aged twelve at this point since you say that it's been 3 years since he arrived on Coruscant, but the internal monologue doesn't really feel like a child's musings -- for instance I can't imagine a twelve-year-old thinking "He had become an exile in residence". If it hadn't been for the time marker and a few small details here and there like his haircut to indicate his age, my guess would have been that this is a teenager/adolescent speaking, not a child. However, this is really a small detail because your characterisation is spot-on, and it really shines in the details (e.g. how he tinkered with the powerchair to give it more speed -- sooooo Anakin!)

    And of course, like darth_treyvah said, the parallel to what Anakin would become as Vader in the canon timeline is incredibly ironic. I particularly liked the moment when he struggles with telekinesis to put his dirty clothes in the laundry basket -- it reminded me of some passages in the post-RotS Darth Vader novels where Vader realises that the nature of his connection to the Force changed after he became a cyborg, and it makes him feel diminished.

    Another moment of fantastic irony is Anakin's dialogue with Yoda in Part I, especially the sentence "But if try you did to ignore your feelings, these things you would become." It's very interesting how you made this AU Yoda more tolerant than the rigid Yoda of the PT -- although, of course, the infraction to the Jedi Code is of a different nature here, Anakin is younger, punishment has already been meted out by the course of events and the stakes are different.

    Speaking of Yoda, I have another teensy bit of criticism here. IMO it's not necessary to reverse the verb systematically when writing Yoda-speak, as Yoda doesn't do it himself in the films, especially in short sentences (e.g. "You seek Yoda" or "There is no try"). It's a very small thing but I think it would make the text flow better if you balanced it out.

    Lastly, one aspect I really like in the way you wrote this story is that, instead of giving us a long, grim and potentially tiresome detailed account of the accident itself, you're giving us bits and pieces about it in the little flashbacks at the beginning of each chapter. In the first two chapters, it adds another layer of insight in that we see the accident itself, but also the way Anakin processes these memories after the fact. And the POV shift in the third chapter gives a lot of depth to Anakin's relationship with Obi-Wan, because we get to see how Obi-Wan is having trouble coping with the situation, which is something Anakin doesn't really understand. This was particularly visible in the fact that Obi-Wan feels that he is living in the shadow of Qui-Gon, which also explains to an extent why he's so driven to improve his lightsaber skills -- whereas Anakin doesn't seem to associate Obi-Wan's motivation to train in lightsaber combat with his master's legacy.

    tl;dr: This is a five-star story and I'll be waiting for the next post impatiently. I'm curious to see what Master Forgo's unorthodox approach will do for Anakin and how bringing him to the Misfits Enclave (what a great concept!) will result in Anakin helping others but also helping himself.

    -------------------------------------

    PS: Since I'm writing this review for the Tag Challenge, I tried to spot typos or any other mistakes you could have left in the text. There isn't much, because this is really neatly edited =D= -- here's what I found (also, bear in mind that I'm not a native speaker, so maybe I'm seeing mistakes where there are none):

    Part I
    Soon the room would full up with Jedi Knights -- shouldn't that be 'fill'?

    Part II
    they were reckoned extinct for a millennia or more -- the latinist in me is adamant that this should be 'millenium'

    Part III
    The driver, a gran, swivelled his triple eye stalks -- my impression was that species' names are capitalised, but I may be wrong
    Whats a shinthu?’ -- shouldn't that be 'what's'?
    The further away from the temple they got the smaller the building became -- that should be 'buildings'
    Some of the younglings who are adopted into the Order carry emotional scars either from traumatic experiences before they came to the Jedi -- either you forgot to delete a word here, or the second half of the sentence is missing.

    -----------------------------------

    PPS: In case you missed it, there used to be discussion and challenge threads about disabilities in the GFFA. There are some great stories listed in there:
    The Disability Index (WBM link)
    The Disabilities Challenge (WBM link)
     
  20. Ewok Poet

    Ewok Poet Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Now, excuse me while I weep. :(

    While I can't stop admiring your fondness for kid Ani, a character that gets a lot of incredible hate for absolutely no reason, the sole setup of this story makes me think of another person with a disability. Therefore, this is a warped kind of a reality, that makes me think of writers such as Maxim Gorky, Charles Dickens and the other never-happy folks; but it's incredibly-well written and it comes from the heart. I'm not sure if somebody who has never experienced this would be able to write Anakin's struggle with such great detail. This requires the amount of bravery that I'm not sure I can actually grasp, so...nothing but hats off to you here. Hats off.

    Moreover, the whole idea of a child with so much ahead of him having his dreams and his legs crushed, and then relegated to what would be an equivalent of an office job is incredibly intriguing and I can't wait to see how this plays off.

    (Going to edit this with a proper comment on each of the three chapters later...)
     
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  21. Findswoman

    Findswoman Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    A very powerful piece you have here, and a very compelling AU that in its way is quite true to Anakin's character. Disability isn't a subject often tackled by fanfic writers in much depth, so it's fantastic to see it done in such a nuanced and in-depth way.

    1. From Anakin's intense remorse at his past reckless behavior to the bizarre feeling of not being able to feel his own body, we really get to experience the nitty-gritty of Anakin's post-injury life here. Fantastic details, all of which contribute to the atmosphere: one that stood out to me was the way Anakin has to bundle his own foot up onto the hoverchair footplate like a sack of potatoes—showing the ways this injury has all but turned him into a dead weight, an object. And the way he races through the halls in the chair, trying against all odds to recapture the thrill of podracing—even though he knows he'll never be able to do so in any more than this watered-down form. Yoda's voice is spot-on, as is his trademark wry sense of humor ("Agree with that, I would" [face_laugh]). I love that he doesn't lecture Anakin here, but rather acknowledges that a certain amount of recklessness is just part of Anakin's nature—and that following one's nature is a good thing. I'm curious to learn more about this Master Forgo whom Yoda recommends; is he disabled in a similar way, for similar reasons? Shall find out soon...

    2. Another powerful beginning, with some of the most nitty-gritty details of all about Anakin's current state: I agree that not being able to walk is one thing, but not being able to control one's bodily functions (even around people whose job it is to help with such things) is another entirely. But none of it is gratuitous, and all of it contributes to the atmosphere of the story and the characterization of this version of Anakin.

    And we get to meet Master Forgo. Wow, he's... really something! His no-nonsense approach to dueling and martial arts training kind of reminds me of the style of Okinawan karate my husband teaches: he too emphasizes practical self-defense techniques without a lot of fancy, inessential motion. And of course he's totally right that the returning Sith won't be using blasters; this isn't just about nebulously preserving old techniques for posterity. I guessed that he too must be disabled in some way, and he is indeed, though in a different way from Anakin (which I should have guessed from the story's title), and it seems that—correct me if I'm getting this wrong—his very disability is somehow heightening his Force sense, or giving it an added dimension? I am curious to see what task he has in mind for this "tornado-headed" Anakin, and why someone of that type is so necessary for that task. [face_thinking]

    3. And the mission begins. Even the preliminary jaunt through the marketplace is an ordeal in itself, with the sidelong looks and the unkindness of the cab driver. But if we're to believe Master Forgo here, even that had a therapeutic purpose: to satisfy Anakin's urge for adventure and for non-safety in a way that just borrowing one of the temple's speeders wouldn't have done. From their conversation we see some of Forgo's gentler side come through: though still an advocate of the "boot up the rear end" when necessary, he is accepting and sympathetic toward Anakin without being pitying, and his advice that Anakin be patient with himself during his recovery process shows that patience is a virtue of his, too. (Though he most certainly learned it the hard way!)

    I'm glad the Jedi Order has such a thing as a Misfits' Enclave—but my gosh, what a thing to call it! :eek: That alone hints that Anakin's experience there May be a mixed one. And since Forgo clearly hasn't brought Anakin here for therapy (Anakin's troubles are of another sort), what then has he brought him for? [face_thinking]

    Looking forward to more—I'd love to see this continue, and I'll certainly follow it if it does! :)
     
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  22. EGKenobi

    EGKenobi Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Is there an update in the works for this one? I loved reading it :)
     
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  23. Kahara

    Kahara Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 3, 2001
    Same here! Read this a while ago and was very impressed, so I hope you'll continue it at some point. :) Congratulations on the noms, by the way!
     
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  24. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 21, 2016
    I am really liking this. I hope you post more soon, because I want to know more about the Misfits' Enclave.
     
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  25. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    If Chirut Iwe was able to read this fanfic, he would love it. Ah well, Baze Malbus could still read it to him. ;)

    Anyway, I appreciate like Ewok Poet what you did for the character of young Anakin here. Since I got struck in an elevator at a hotel in Düsseldorf/ Germany in 2010 with Jake Lloyd, Matt(hew) Wood, my husband DarthUncle & some others for a very brief time, I think Jake is a cool guy. (Which is why I am so sad for him that he got diagnosed for schizophrenia.)
     
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