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Before - Legends To Skin a Gundark (Trett) --COMPLETE

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Mistress_Renata, Oct 26, 2003.

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  1. dianethx

    dianethx Jedi Master star 6

    Mar 1, 2002
    See....I did say body parts....maybe the lump was an organ or something like that...
    We shall see. Good job!
  2. Xeana

    Xeana Jedi Youngling star 2

    Nov 9, 2003


    That would make sense, I guess.

  3. Jane Jinn

    Jane Jinn Jedi Knight star 5

    Jan 12, 2000
    At some point the penny will drop and Trett's most faithful fans will know exactly what that lump is!

    Trett's most faithful fans ... hmm ... this sounds like a message in code ... I've got it! It's a clump of dried beard-remover (depilatory creme) with whiskers still stuck in it, and the DNA of the whiskers will lead the Jedi to the pirate who actually turns out to be one of the slave traders!

    *beams happily*

    Now back to the story.

    I liked the way Trett wanted to jump to the platform with his lightsaber ignited and tell the slave boys to run! Good idea for him to get close to the conspirators by sliding under the seats. What a description of the floor! Yuck!

    Nier sounds like she's above board, if she's talking about shelters for elderlies. She really doesn't have a good opinion of the Jedi, does she? She thinks they're too caught up in details to notice the bigger picture, and thinks that this Kyarrl, whoever it is, will be able to find out more than the Jedi will. I hope not!

    Oooh, will Amut's prediction come true? There wouldn't be a story if nothing happened to Trett, therefore, something MUST happen to him, therefore ... although to tell the truth, I just can't see mild old Myron taking somebody apart. Okay, he's not that old, but he's certainly mild ... I can see him taking Amut under his wing so that they could work together to help Trett.

    Rendell's certainly gung ho at the end of this post, isn't he! He could track this Daru guy, he'd show them!

    I can't help it, but I have a bad feeling about this!

    Ooh, here's Senator Maxett. I like him already. Interesting tidbit about the rescue from the swoop gang here. :) I like the way that both the Senator and the Jedi are in agreement about the value of elders as depositories for the collected wisdom of a lifetime. That's a nice touch.

    Human organs as a delicacy. Well, that's an interesting idea. Anybody want any onions with those livers?

    A subtle ripple in the Force ... Rendell is upset about something ... well, at least he's still conscious! Can't wait for more.

    See....I did say body parts....maybe the lump was an organ or something like that...

    Somebody's cold, hard heart? ;)
  4. Sarah_K

    Sarah_K Jedi Master star 4

    Jun 10, 2001
    Oh, I know! Dads are so great. *grins at her own indulgent daddy* Mine takes me on birthday dates. :D

    That was about as awful as it could be. Especially since the first group of slaves they saw were Rendell's age. Such an horrible waste! However, all the description of the slave yards was very vivid ? in a good way. :)

    The way you put across everyone's views on slavery reminds me a good deal of the original organizing of the American government: some people wanted a strong federal government, others a strong state government, and for the most part they detested each other because they were convinced the other side was wrong. What they didn't realize was that they were actually *both* right; a combination of the two ideas was the only way to make their democracy work. I am currently vibrating between appreciation for Ms. Nier for her work, and the desire to shake her because of her broad and distinctly unfair assumptions about the Jedi and their motives. It is unfortunate that such are the ways of people! *sighs and smacks head on keyboard* a;fa;waif;dflaskgjaoig Ow. Lucy is giving me one of her 'Humans!' looks. :p

    I liked the way Trett explained the reasoning for his presence, and more especially the way he bit his tongue here. ;) I'm also glad Myron trusted him enough to let him go and help Amut, though I fear that (as has already been mentioned) the padawan's *intention* to obey may not be able to prevent a mess. ;)

    That was so sad about the elder slaves! Of course that is what would happen if the slaves were counted no better than machines, but one cannot reconcile oneself to thinking that way. That's very bizarre about them stealing only the elderly and disabled? On the one hand that seems to *scream* abolitionists, but it doesn't seem Ms. Nier is in on it if that is the case. Back to the insurance drawing board? I SO hope that distinctly grisly possibility of being sold as food is NOT the answer. I don't think I'd be able to handle that? *turns green*

    Ooh, I really like Max! I know, he's barely in it, but I like him all the same. :)

    Now then, what has Rendell gotten himself into now? I mean, that is more disturbing than usual?

    Lucy says that setting on a mission out determined to 'show' anyone is a simple way to ensure that nothing will be shown besides one's own recklessness. However, if the wisdom of a lifetime has no market value, cat wisdom doesn?t seem to either. :p

    Sarah >^,,^<
  5. Mistress_Renata

    Mistress_Renata Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 9, 2000
    I do love reading your comments, everyone! The most subtle things I put in, you always seem to find them! The descriptive details, the background, the overarching themes... you don't miss a one! [face_love] I have such smart readers... :D

    Right. The next bit isn't gory or anything... but it was very sad and very disturbing. To me. But it had to be in there. So be warned! :(

    * * *

    The remnant barns were worse than the other pens he'd seen, and the smell was indescribable. Trett gagged, but pushed on.

    "I can work!"

    Trett slowed, and looked over to the right. Most of the slaves consigned for sale were huddled on bleachers, staring at nothing.

    But one boy stood, standing near the aisle, calling to the passers-by. Trett caught his breath. The boy was his age, had to be. But both of his arms were missing from above the elbow, and ugly prosthetics had replaced them. His face was terribly scarred, melted, as if he'd been burned, and there was a dark patch over one of his eyes. Trett wasn't surprised by the injuries; he knew Jedi Knights with worse. But not in a boy his own age.

    "Good worker! Fast learner!" called the boy, looking hopefully at a few Crays who were ambling by.

    Trett wandered over. "What's your name?" he asked.

    The boy focused on him with one blue eye, and bowed. "I am called Seph, my master," he said. "I'm a good worker, and I learn quickly. I have experience with repairs and retrofitting, although I've also done agri work. The dealer is eager to unload me, so the price will probably be low, and it's worth it!" He looked at Trett hopefully.

    "My name is Rendell," said Trett. "I'm not here to buy slaves, actually."

    Seph looked puzzled, and a bit dismayed. "Well," he said, squaring his shoulders, "maybe you should rethink that. I'm very useful. And I'm a fast learner. Fast learner!" he added more loudly as a Corellian strode past him. The man glared, and didn't slow his pace.

    "What happened to your arms?" said Trett gently. Seph hesitated.

    "I worked in the Kumari shipyards," he said in a low voice, "in the retrofit factory. There was an accident. One of the hoverlifts lost power, and dropped a purge tank. My frien...the others were killed. I...I was able to get away."

    "Except for your arms." Trett clenched his fists. The acid in the purge tank, used to burn the protective outer coating off of deep-space vessels so that they could be cleaned and re-coated, would probably have killed the other boys and it wouldn't have been quick or painless. This boy, Seph, was remarkably lucky... if you could call it that.

    "Well..." Seph lifted the ugly prosthetics to stare at them. "These work okay. I can still work. Hard worker!" Trett turned to look at a bored Jismman woman, being carried in a luxurious sedan chair by several young male slaves, their bare chests gleaming with oil. From the look of the slaves, she was after something more decorative.

    Trett chewed his lip, and glanced quickly from side to side. Then he moved closer, lowering his voice. "Have you ever thought about trying to escape?"

    Something flickered in the boy's blue eye. Of course, realized Trett. He must have dreamed of escaping many times.

    Seph swallowed. "Oh, no, my lord," he said. "Where would I go? I am glad to be of service to my masters." He turned to see a group of businessmen, from Teneb by the look of them, and raised his voice. "I'm skilled at repair of small vessels, and learn new things quickly! And I'll be cheap, too. Bargain price!"

    Trett wished Seph wasn't trying so hard to sell himself. There was a hint of desperation that made the young Jedi squirm. But the boy's courage, his resolve, impressed Trett. Somehow, some way, he'd get help. No matter what Trett had to do.

    "If you were free, and if you could do anything you wanted, what would it be?" he asked.

    Seph hesitated. "Oh, my master," he said, laughing a little too loudly, "I am happy with my life as it is." He faltered as Trett caught his eye. Then he sighed. He didn't need to impress the Jedi, and the other boy would keep his s
  6. dianethx

    dianethx Jedi Master star 6

    Mar 1, 2002
    That is so sad. And Myron probably will tell Trett no. Horrible. Maybe the abolishionists could do something.
  7. PadawanKitara

    PadawanKitara Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Dec 31, 2001
    Is Kumari shipyards where all the repair work is being done on the ships that were attacked by pirates?
  8. Keeper_of_Swords

    Keeper_of_Swords Jedi Master star 5

    Sep 20, 2003
    I worked in the Kumari shipyards," he said in a low voice, "in the retrofit factory. There was an accident. One of the hoverlifts lost power, and dropped a purge tank. My frien...the others were killed. I...I was able to get away."....that's soo sad.

    "Except for your arms."...that's a bit funny, in a twisted kind of black humour.
  9. Xeana

    Xeana Jedi Youngling star 2

    Nov 9, 2003

    Oh man! Poor kid. :(

    If Myron says no, I'm gonna cry. :( :_|
  10. padawan lunetta

    padawan lunetta Jedi Grand Master star 6

    May 15, 1999
    Poor kid...the way he was trying to sell himself was heartbreaking, as well as Trett thinking his Master would help him out. I get the feeling the answer will be no too.

    Great work Renata :)
  11. Jane Jinn

    Jane Jinn Jedi Knight star 5

    Jan 12, 2000
    Oh, dear. I hate to say it, but although Trett's heart is in the right place, he's letting his emotions distract him from the task he firmly said he wouldn't screw up. What if he misses his chance to find out something important because he was off trying to get Myron to buy a slave?

    Are Jedi even allowed to buy slaves? I mean, is it legal for Jedi? I'm sure it's against the Code!

    Seph seems so anxious to sell himself, but it doesn't look as though other slaves are following his example. Is he afraid of a worse fate than being sold for a bargain price? Or is he just trying to make the best of the situation?

    That was horrible about the acid, and the way that the death of the other boys had not been quick or painless. I did notice that Seph said 'friends', which makes it even worse!
  12. Mistress_Renata

    Mistress_Renata Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 9, 2000
    Thank you, everyone! It IS sad... and I'm afraid you won't like Myron's answer. :(

    * * *

    He burst into the suite, momentarily entangled in the flowing draperies dividing the rooms. As he fought himself free, Myron walked in from the plaza.

    "Ah, you're back so soon? Well? Were you able to help Amut?"

    "Master? We need eight hundred credits!"

    "Eight hundred?" Myron stared at his Padawan who was breathless and sweating. He must have run all the way here from the shuttle terminal. "Whatever for?"

    Trett swallowed. "There's a boy, and he's lost both his arms and he wants to be a farmer, but if he doesn't have arms no one will want him and he's on sale tomorrow, only eight hundred credits, really cheap, and--"

    "No, Renn."

    "But Myron--!"

    "No, Rendell. Jedi do not buy slaves."

    "But if we're going to free him-"

    "No." Myron looked at him, thinking again that this was a mistake. The boy had a good heart, but he was not ready for this mission. Tomorrow I will send him back to the Temple. "Can you think why?"

    He felt the Force, darkness, swirling around his student. "Because we can't be bothered?" growled Trett. The words cut the man to the heart.

    "No. Because buying slaves is supporting slavery."

    "But if we're going to free them-"

    "How is that different from ransoming them?"

    Trett bit back his response, turning red. Jedi didn't pay ransoms.

    "Jedi do not support slavery. We uphold the law because we must. But what would people think if the word got around that Jedi were buying slaves? Would they know we were buying them to release them? Or would they assume that we would keep them and employ them?"

    Trett didn't answer. Myron could see him struggling with himself, and it hurt the older man to see his student, his boy, in so much pain.

    "Worse," he said softly, "if the slaves knew we bought and released slaves, how would they feel when we appeared to inspect a slave pen or ship, and then didn't buy and release them?"

    Trett took a deep breath. "Master," he said, "I can't save every slave, I know that. But I can help this one, I can help Seph."

    "By continuing as we have been doing, enforcing the law-"

    "No, Master. I'm going to find a way to free him." Trett hesitated, then looked at the older man. "The woman from FETRS. If I can help him get away-"

    "You're going to help a slave escape? You're going to break the law?" Myron was horrified. One thing to know and turn a blind eye. But to actively participate... in effect, stealing property... Trett squirmed.

    "Master, he's not really that valuable! He's lost his arms! I have to do something." He thrust his chin forward. "I'm going to find a way."

    Myron sighed. "No," he said. "I forbid you to go back to the planet. Tomorrow, you will return to the Temple and wait for me to complete the mission. You obviously aren't ready for this."

    "Myron, you don't understand! He's-"

    "Padawan, I've made my decision."


    "You are going to defy me?" Trett went white. His mouth opened and shut. After a moment, he hung his head.

    "No, Master," he mumbled. He turned and went towards his room.

    "All right, then. Get ready for dinner."

    "I'm not hungry." Myron found that hard to believe.

    "You have to eat," he said in a calm, reasonable tone. Trett turned to glare at him.

    "I said I'm not hungry!" he snapped. "Or do you think that I'm too stupid to understand that, too?"

    Myron caught his breath. "Renn-" he began.

    But the boy was gone. Myron looked after him for a minute, then sighed and went back to his database. He'd give the boy a chance to calm down, a chance to think things over. Then he'd brew a pot of tea and they could have a long talk, and let the boy work things out.

  13. dianethx

    dianethx Jedi Master star 6

    Mar 1, 2002
    Oh dear. Myron's answer makes perfect sense but Trett won't see that - only the pain. Why do I have the feeling that Trett won't be in his room tonight? This is really horrible.

    Good job!
  14. Ty-gon Jinn

    Ty-gon Jinn Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jan 12, 2000
    There's no goo way out of this one. Poor Trett!
  15. padawan lunetta

    padawan lunetta Jedi Grand Master star 6

    May 15, 1999
    Poor Trett...Myron was reasonable enough. I have a bad feeling about him still being in his room as well.
  16. Sarah_K

    Sarah_K Jedi Master star 4

    Jun 10, 2001
    Dang it. That was just the sort of thing I was afraid would happen, sooner or later. It's not that I don't understand Rendell's feelings (and sympathize mightily), but he's forgetting so very much in his rush to fix one small aspect of the larger problem. The biggest thing he has neglected to consider is that there are good laws and harmful ones, and if he breaks the harmful ones out of hand, what will become of the stability of the good ones?

    Ah, well. What's the good of being a padawan if you can't learn lessons -- even if you have to learn them the hard way.

    Seph's story was really tragic! Most especially because of his jarringly determined attempts to get himself sold. If humans are the most adaptable species, children are twice as adaptable as adults. It's sad more than anything. :(

    Lucy says she will now join the rest of the readers in worrying over what Rendell will do once he is alone in his room.

    Sarah >^,,^<
  17. PadawanKitara

    PadawanKitara Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Dec 31, 2001
    A necessary answer, but sad all the same.
  18. Mistress_Renata

    Mistress_Renata Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 9, 2000
    Sorry to keep you all waiting! I don't imagine Myron likes this much either...

    Why do I have the feeling that Trett won't be in his room tonight? Strong in the Force are dianethx and lunetta! Insight it gives them... ;)

    And you are right, Sarah_K, Our Hero is having a little trouble seeing and accepting the big picture.

    * * *

    Trett threw himself on to the bed and buried his head in the pillows. It's not fair! It's not fair! He rolled on to his back and stared at the draperies.

    He didn't know how long he remained like that. The shadows in the room lengthened. Suddenly restless, he rolled out of bed, paced back and forth for a while, then sank to the floor, beginning the deep breathing of the meditation exercises. Peace did not come to him, though. The thoughts of Seph, the other boys and girls being auctioned off, the sights, the smells... "I know I can't save them all..."

    But I can save one!

    Trett's heart pounded, and he breathed, deliberately slowing it to a more normal rate. Myron already didn't trust him. Tomorrow he'd be sent back to the Temple, and who knew what would happen next. After his behavior, he'd be lucky not to end up orphaned with the Reassignment Council... or worse, booted out and packed off to the AgriCorps.

    So, he might as well get booted for a reason. The woman from FETRS... They had shelters set up for the elders, maybe she could find someplace for Seph. All he had to do was get Seph out. He was a Jedi. He could do that.

    All he had to do was make sure Myron didn't find out. He had to behave normally. Quickly he rolled out of bed and prepared for dinner.

    He had never had to shield for so long, or so carefully. It was hard to maintain his composure during dinner. Fortunately, he was not seated close to Myron, and few of the dignitaries being entertained by the Viceroy paid him any attention, so he could confine his conversation to monosyllables and grunts. The dignitaries didn't really expect anything different from teenagers. Myron was more of a danger. Trett was aware of a few anxious looks sent in his direction, but by focusing his own gaze on his plate he didn't have to worry about his eyes giving him away.

    The real test was after dinner, when they'd returned to their suite. Trett guessed he had about three hours before evening meditations, and that was the danger time. He'd immediately fired up a dataterminal and pulled up some classwork, hoping that would deflect Myron's interest. It was hard to keep up with formal studies on field duty, but most Jedi tried. Even Knights and Masters usually continued to study various things throughout their lives. Trett knew that Myron was less likely to disturb him while he was working on history, one of his least favorite subjects.

    His gamble paid off. Myron hovered, but realizing that the boy was working, he did not interfere, and went to his own work. Trett exhaled silently, in relief. In his message buffer, he noticed something from the Temple and fought down a faint stab of apprehension as he opened it. They couldn't have found out his plans, could they? Not at this distance.

    It was the results of his query, though, that he had sent to the Temple for analysis. The lump of dirt he'd found in the cargo area of the pirate ship was actually a small pellet of "Proto-Gro," a high-protein feed supplement for Banthas and other agricultural animals. Which didn't mean much. The pirates could have raided a farm settlement, or the freighter could have been carrying a shipment from the factory on an earlier run. He tagged the message to forward to Myron, though it wouldn't help much, probably.

    But after a while, his luck ran out.


    Trett swallowed. "Master?" he said, trying to keep his voice even.

    "We need to talk."

    Those words, in that tone of voice, did not bode well. Trett kept his eyes on the datascreen.

    "I need to finish this up before meditations," he said.

    "It can wait. I need to talk with you now, before meditations."

    Trett groaned inwardly, bu
  19. dianethx

    dianethx Jedi Master star 6

    Mar 1, 2002
    Hiding stuff from his Master is not a good thing. I think Myron has his work cut out for him. And if Trett leaves and tries to free Seph, he is likely to get caught and then there will be a big brouhaha!

    As for the lump, this is getting worse. I know that, in the US (and used to be in England before mad-cow disease), a lot of protein suppliments for animals are ground-up animal parts. I hope they aren't grinding up the old slaves. Yeck!

    Looking forward to more!
  20. Jane Jinn

    Jane Jinn Jedi Knight star 5

    Jan 12, 2000
    Myron's right. I loved his arguments about why the Jedi didn't buy slaves, and especially his remark that they upheld the laws because they had to. I'm sure none of them want to!

    Oh, dear, Renn's planning to help Seph escape. This is not good. I don't know if I like the idea of getting "that woman from FETRS" involved, either. If she's involved with shady dealings, then Rendell's putting himself into more danger, and if she's not, then he's putting her into danger. Bad, bad.

    "Proto-Gro" -- dianethx's suggestion was chilling!

    Poor Myron, he's trying so hard to be a good Jedi master and help Rendell grow and learn, but Rendell's being so stubborn! That last sentence about him being near to Myron, but not too near, was saddening.
  21. Ty-gon Jinn

    Ty-gon Jinn Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jan 12, 2000
    Soylent Green is PADAWAAAAAAN!!.....

    I think Master Myron has a much better understanding of Padawan Trett than Rendell might imagine.
  22. Knight_Dilettante

    Knight_Dilettante Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jul 24, 2002
    Oh dear. On so many levels. Trett is not stopping to listen to and really think about what Myron is saying. And Myron doesn't seem to have been able to say what Trett needed to hear to bring him back into focus. I have a very bad feeling about this.

    And especially for Dianethx (and Ty-Gon): Ewwwwwwwww.

  23. padawan lunetta

    padawan lunetta Jedi Grand Master star 6

    May 15, 1999
    Trett's definitely heading toward trouble...if he was going to get kicked out, he may as well deserve it. This isn't good though, if the poor kids gets caught....

    Can't wait for more!
  24. Mistress_Renata

    Mistress_Renata Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 9, 2000
    Trouble, alas, is what Trett's best at! Sorry this is so short; we've got a massive rainstorm here & I want to get off line as soon as I can (the power almost ALWAYS flicks out once or twice when we get storms like this...)

    Hm, has dianethx been reading the backlog? ;)

    * * *

    * * *

    Trett roused himself from the light sleep, and glanced at the time. It was a useful trick, being able to wake exactly when you planned. At this hour of the night, everyone was likely to be asleep. Even Myron.

    And yet... Trett sighed. He and his master didn't share a telepathic bond, but there was something that seemed to attune them to each other. There was still a chance the older man would wake. He also knew that at least one of the girls was in the outer room, on the off chance they'd need something. Trett fought down a blush, thinking about them. He was certain, now, that the girls wouldn't try to force themselves on unwilling guests... but having them around still made him... uncomfortable.

    The boy made himself think of his current situation. How to keep Myron from waking and getting suspicious...why would Trett normally be up in the middle of the night? Actually, it was pathetically easy. He stumbled to the 'fresher, hitting the purge button and washing his hands noisily. Then, he walked back to his bedroom, to the sliding doors overlooking the outdoor plaza. Here, he paused, listening intently, not daring to reach out with the Force. Not a sound from the apartment.

    Now he moved quickly. The plaza ran along the side of the building, outside the guest suites. He moved on his toes, silent, listening for any sounds of pursuit. He heard an occasional snore as he passed the other guest rooms. At the end of the plaza, where it butted up against the wall of the main building, he turned to look back.

    Nothing. He was not followed. Trett peered over the marble railing. There was a drop of about twenty meters to the road below. A Jedi could make it, if he was prepared. Trett swung himself over the railing and landed lightly, relaxing his body so the joints of his legs could absorb the shock. He turned to look up again, still half-worried that his Master had sensed his plan. Nothing.

    It was easier now. He pulled his cloak about him and walked briskly, purposefully. A few slaves on nightly duties saw him, and paused, wondering. He ignored them, as a guest would, and slipped through the vast mansion to the spaceport. The starfighter was sitting in its berth.

    "R3?" he called.

    There was a pause, then a chirp as the small droid activated.

    "Prepare for takeoff," he ordered, scrambling up the wing into the cockpit. As he swung the hood into place, he could see systems all around him light up, activating. There was a gurgled query from the droid.

    "No, in-system," he said. "We're going down to Ananzial."

    Ananzial was larger than its satellite, and revolved more slowly. It was nightfall, but not quite as late here in the slave pens. He'd have some time.

    Trett slipped along the edge of the sheds, keeping to the shadows. He had the advantage of knowing the security systems, of course. He and Amut had duly recorded that for the report. Two hulking guards of a species he didn't recognize were outside the door of the main building housing the slave pens. They slouched against the wall, bored and silent. Trett flattened himself into a shadow and looked around. A rock? A speeder? He eyed the large building with the main sales areas and smiled to himself.

    As if by magic, a large rock suddenly lifted itself off the ground and threw itself through a window set high up. The guards snapped to attention. One grunted a question at the other, who moved forward slowly, cautiously. Come on! thought Trett. He turned his attention to the massive trash bin behind the building. From within it came a crashing, shuddering noise. Both the guards moved forward, bringing their forcepikes to a ready position. A few other security staff joined them to investigate.

    No one noticed the teenager who slipped to the door and pu
  25. jacen200015

    jacen200015 Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jan 11, 2002
    I can understand how he must be feeling. however i also understand his master's reasoning. Poor Trett.

    To bad Anakin wasn't there :D hehe. :p

    Edit: I just realized something. I have a feeling Trett is going to find out the hard way what is going on and gets captured.
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