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Saga The Haunted Moon of Miel Muwn (K'Kruhk,Zao,Piru,Hawkbat Clan.DarkTimesComic cont'ed)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by pronker, Apr 23, 2014.

  1. pronker

    pronker Force Ghost star 4

    Jan 28, 2007
    Title: The Haunted Moon of Miel Muwn

    Characters: K'Kruhk, Zao, Chase Piru, The Soaring Hawkbat Clan, mentions of the dear departed: Sian Jeisel, DuMahn, Miel Muwn and Anakin Skywalker

    Disclaimer: I make no profit from this fanfiction using Star Wars, its characters and settings, and I am neither George nor Walt.

    Summary: K'Kruhk discovers that a tale may grow in the telling.

    Era: Intertrilogy directly after Order 66, extrapolated from the 2013 Dark Horse 5-issue series 'Dark Times: Carrier of Fire' It would help to familiarize oneself with that series, but any plot point questions answered cheerfully.

    A/N: Mentions of a certain animated villain that I get a kick out of, though this is not a crossover





    K'Kruhk laughed, a relaxed rumble that had Chase Piru giggling and Master Zao smiling with all his tusks. Zao waved his walking stick at the Whiphid. "Your turn to tell a story, my friend. These younglings slaver for your tales."

    "Your stories contain valuable lessons, Zao, and mine do not."

    Chase thought that through the Force, Zao Sensed K'Kruhk's mane lying deceptively flat and serene, always a barometer to his true state. Zao could be fooled into thinking his friend as docile as Coruscanti programmed weather, but not often. Zao had not seen a feral, roaring K'Kruhk.

    Chase had.

    "Your stories entertain, your seeker of flattery, you. That quality is not to be downgraded."

    Chase saw that Zao's blind eyes reflected the coals from this evening's fire. Soon, soon the updating of the crumbling stronghold's circuits would be complete and prosaic lumapanels would enliven the hidden Jedi enclave at sundown, but that night was not tonight. The communal fire eased Zao's sighted companions' auras into steady glows, which Chase could see in the Force as well as he could. "Eh, I need a break," the Veknoid wheezed in the reedy voice of great age. "I need to gather strength and thoughts, do you think my lessons spring from nothing?"

    When Zao slipped an arm around Sidirri, seeming not to discern when she leaned away from his touch, Chase noticed that the girl's ratted hair needed combing. Tomorrow was soon enough for that, she thought; troubled Sidirri was what her studies called 'touch-starved', and a simple grooming by a fellow Jedi ought to ease her pained thoughts. For tonight, Sidirri's disquiet took the form of subharmonics in the Force, a rumble not unlike K'Kruhk's simple laugh, though in a minor key. It jarred Chase's peace of mind. When Zao squeezed Sidirri's shoulders before letting her go, Chase's thoughts darkened. We Jedi are now so few. May the Force allow us to live in peace here on Arkinnea, and not allow Sian Jeisel's sacrifice to be in vain.

    At least Sidirri did not leave the side of the diminutive Master. "Zurg!" she echoed along with the others.

    "You all would like a tale with the despicable Evil Emperor Zurg in it?" K'Kruhk winked one tawny eye, then the other.

    "Yes!" Even though she was nearing eighteen Standard, Chase joined the chorus, waving K'Kruhk's conical hat that she had fashioned for him out of reeds. This was their first full summer on Arkinnea, and the day's weather had turned beastly hot, the chill that came with dusk a relief as profound as rain. She fiddled with the ties of the hat, returning to the conclusion she had formed about the redoubtable Master K'Kruhk: he was invigorated by the challenge of surviving Order 66, not at all sentimental about losing the Temple. By contrast, she herself mourned its devastation and the sense of home. This Hidden Temple might acquire that sense, in a few more years. Chase hoped so. She directed her attention to the present moment, determined to banish sadness to the Force, and even smiled over K'Kruhk's teasing of his Soaring Hawkbat Clan audience.

    "Are you certain? We do not need a story every night. Perhaps Master Zao and myself require a rest, what do you say, Master Zao --- "

    The younglings bounced in place. "Yes! Erm, no!"

    K'Kruhk fixed them all with a stern glare that smacked of exaggeration. "I have a story for you which may bring back memories of our distress. Would you all like to hear this tale? It involves a battle." K'Kruhk waited for their answer. Chase and Zao knew that their friend was prepared with a gentler story if the younglings proved timid.

    "Yes!" Before Chase could stop them, one yelped as the rest pounced on him, forming a ball of giggles and play-slaps. Eh, let them get out some energy. Grabbing the bowl of snacks before it upset, Chase snagged a beelpop melon cube to suck on, catching her breath as K'Kruhk's pectorals rippled when he settled himself cross-legged on the meditation mat. The Yunu had helped repair the roof as welcome friends; she and K'Kruhk had assigned the younglings to weaving reeds into mats to occupy them while their elders used their technical expertise to make their new home civilized. She had given the hat to K'Kruhk in gratitude for saving all their lives, and perhaps to render his regrets more bearable. Chase knew he had done violence only to save innocent younglings.

    Most days she forgot her own part in that violence.

    She would always feel safe with Master K'Kruhk.

    K'Kruhk's massive chest swelled as he gathered in the Force and Chase just knew she would dream of his story this particular night. Such a dream would be ever so much more exciting than her usual mundane fare of how-am-I-going-to-make-the-food-last-longer. The Jedi Master's nostril slits quivered with a centering breath, then three, and Chase heaved a breath as well. As a teen way out here with Jedi both much younger and much older, stranded for lack of a better term, Chase yearned for the regularity of Temple life, the comfort of her agemates.

    A story to take her out of herself would have to suffice.

    After easing his trousers to a more comfortable stretch over his thighs, K'Kruhk cracked his knuckles and began:

    "The battleground of the Haunted Moon is a historic spot, very dear to those who make the past reputation of our Order a personal matter. A Jedi who does not thrill at the mention of the ancient locality where, in more recent times, General Skywalker defeated the Evil Emperor Zurg, the horrific villain who always wore --- "

    "Purple!" Seddwia's lekku shot straight out from her head.

    "--- and who could --- "

    "Shoot laser beams from his eyes!" Kennan's freckles darkened in his pale face.

    "--- and who may even have been --- "

    Silence. Jiro, Genel and Nable stopped piling on the feisty Togorian and the little human boy whose name Zao had trouble pronouncing. Arms and legs a jumbled knot, the group glowed gold in the Force, thinking hard. Seeing them, Crechemaster DuMahn would have needed to disperse much pride into the Force. Perhaps she did see them, from her last resting place in that same Force. Chase was not as sure as she would have been two years ago, that she did not.

    "More machine than man?" Sidirri ventured.

    Zao patted her shoulder, wringing a smile from the girl's tremulous lips. "Excellent, Sidirri! And very quotable!"

    Sidirri straightened. "His color scheme says he's hostile and has an an-an-animosity to all organics, Masters." She turned around in her place as if to make sure her Mon Cal friend, Onkya, heard her triumph. Onkya always sat the farthest from the evening fire.

    K'Kruhk shot a mock-disapproving look at Zao. "Ahem, as I was saying, any Jedi who does not thrill at the exploits of Anakin Skywalker on this ancient battleground is a Force-bereft droid. They say that even our late Chosen One trod the battleground with the closest he ever could come to fear. But, to continue:

    A few days ago a Galactic Enquirer reporter who has a friend who is a pilot on the garbage scow Dubious Content spaced daringly down the plane of the Ecliptic to the Haunted Moon's battleground with the intention of gathering from some of the old inhabitants a few of the stories and legends that are so plentiful concerning the events that occurred on that memorable spot.

    The Dubious Content let the reporter off at the battleground, which is near the bank of a great swamp, and he wandered about under the thick grove of naynabo trees and then out upon the low flat country where the famous battle is said to have raged. Down under the littlest naynabo was a small cabin, and there the reporter wandered in the hope of finding an old inhabitant.

    A venerable man emerged from the cabin, apparently between eighty-five and ninety Standard years of age, with long white hair and silvery beard. His worn tunics were cream and his boots looked as if they needed new buckles. There was something iconic about the clothing, although when the reporter tried to remember what it was, his mind drew a blank.

    "Come hither, youth," the elder said, his crooked nose wrinkling, his high brow descending as he waggled his fingers in a strange way. "Would'st know the legend of this place? Then cross my palm with credits, and I'll tell it thee."

    "Good father," said the reporter as he slid into the ancient one's argot, "Grant me the mercy, as you love life, and ask me not for credits, but even fire away with your old legend."

    "Then sit you here," said the old man, "and I will tell you the legend of The Haunted Moon of Miel Muwn.

    "A great many years ago, when these silver locks of mine were dark and my step as quick and blithe as thine, my tutor told me this tale. How well I remember the day. It was twilight, and the evening shadows were growing long under the trees. She laid her hand upon my head and said:

    " 'My boy, I will tell you the legend of The Haunted Moon of Miel Muwn. It is a beautiful story, and was told to me by my crechemaster, who was one of my earliest teachers of Soresu that I can recall. Ah! what a Master he was -- two full meters in height, sinewy as a withe, and as bold as they come. One day, I remember, he came up to me after a long, hard day wrangling initiates. He took me on his hairy knee as gently as any mother would, this great strong guardian of mine, and said:

    " ' "Listen, little sunbeam, and I will tell you the grand old story of The Haunted Moon of Miel Muwn. It is a legend known to few. It will make your bright eyes dance in your head with wonder. I heard it from my Grandmaster, who was strange, even for a Praci, and held in dread respect by all who knew him. One night when the moons were going down in the west and nightbirds were hooting mournfully in the woods, he pointed out to me that great grove of trees on the swamp's bank, and taking me by the tentacle whispered: 'Do you see them, laddybuck, do you see them?'

    " ' "It was almost dark where we stood alone in the deep grass, and the wind made strange sounds as it swept across the flat.

    " ' " 'I have never breathed to a mortal a word of this story, lad,' said my Grandmaster, 'but it must out. Listen; when I was a child my eldest Ataru instructor told me the legend of The Haunted Moon of Miel Muwn. The next day she died. She told it to me at midnight on the topmost crenellation of the Temple. There was a storm raging, and the furious wind beat us under the arches for shelter. My instructor's eyes, ordinarily so dim and weak, blazed like all the stars in the galaxy. She seemed fifty Standard younger as she raised her trembling hand towards the old battleground and said:

    " ' " ' "Child, for the first time in many years a human tongue is about to reveal the secret that this silent spot holds in its eternal bosom. I will now tell you the legend of The Haunted Moon of Miel Muwn as told me by my healer's half-brother. He was a silent, moody one, fond of reading and solitary walks. One day I found him weeping. When he saw me, he brushed the tears from his eyestalks and said gently:

    " ' " ' " 'Is that you, little one? Come and I will tell you something that I have kept locked in my stomachs for many a year. There is a mournful legend connected with this spot that must be told. Sit by my side, and I will tell it you. I had it from my favorite chef, who was a well known character in her day. How well I remember her words. She was a gentle and lovely woman, and her sweet and musical tones added interest to the quaint, beautiful legend.

    " ' " ' " ' "Once upon a time," she said, "I was riding a kybuck with my best friend's Master across this valley, when he gazed upon that grove of trees and said:

    " ' " ' " ' " 'Hast ever heard the legend of The Haunted Moon of Miel Muwn?'

    " ' " ' " ' " 'Nay,"' I said.

    " ' " ' " ' " 'I will tell it thee,' he said. 'Many years ago when I was a lad, my forensics instructor and I stopped in the shade there to rest. The suns were just setting, and he pointed to the spot and said:

    " ' " ' " ' " ' "My student, I am growing old and will not be with you long. There is an magnificent legend connected with this ground, and I feel that it should be told you. A long time ago, before you were born, the Grandmaster of us all said one day --- " ' " ' " ' " ' "

    "See here, you old bletherer," said the Galactic Enquirer reporter, forgetting that he had wanted to ask where this Temple was and what crechemaster, Ataru and Soresu meant, "you've got this story back about six hundred Standard years before the Great Hyperspace War now. Don't you know a holonews item from an antique written with a quill on paper? Why don't you work this gag of yours off on the Empire's official tabloid?"

    The aged hermit then frowned and reached under his tunic for something hanging from his belt, and the reporter ran swiftly, but in a dignified manner, to the Dubious Content and embarked.

    But there is a legend about The Haunted Moon of Miel Muwn somewhere in the neighborhood, if one could only get at it.


    The End.


    Last edited: Oct 26, 2023