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Saga [UDC VIII] "She Says in Parenthesis"

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Mira_Jade , Mar 26, 2017.

  1. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host Who Loves Fanfics & RPGs star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    As with all your nummies, the wait is worth it! Anakin Solo's musings were so much in character. And Mara's words of wisdom to Jaina =D= I ADORE that whole Master/Apprentice relationship between them, way too cool!

    Your Poldo set [face_dancing] [face_party] I can so see Amilyn embracing life and the possibilities of love with renewed verve and vigor after such a near-miss. Happy that Rey and Finn are also testing the waters at least taking the first step with a dance.

    But the topper was Leia: you have her perfectly here with her wistfulness and missing of those lost. But yes, Han is indeed enough and more [face_love] for a lifetime. When you've had the one you were best suited for, why settle for second best when that's all it would be? [face_laugh] @};- [:D]
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2018
    Mira_Jade and AzureAngel2 like this.
  2. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    All of your characters are so much like themselves. Their reactions understandable. And you write about it all, the bitterness as much as much as the sweetness of situations. @};-
     
  3. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    This was a great couple of sets, @Mira_Jade! Keep 'em coming! =D==D==D=

    Luke is reflective and loving in Artifact. Excellent.

    Memory
    Another Skywalker baby! I love Cade and Kol's truce now that all is finally at peace.

    Air
    Of course, I loved this! the image of the escape tumbling and stars wheeling jumped out. Love Amilyn's laugh.

    Life
    Yes! Whatever it is sums it up perfectly!

    Hair
    I really enjoyed Rey's pov here. It make total sense coming a woman who has had a life time of practicality.


    Conviction

    So wonderfully written. Got goosebumps here.


    Sunnshine
    I hope this is the beginning of a beautiful...ship. :p Finn is jealous of Amilyn, because friends suffer when friends find girlfriends. :rolleyes: [face_laugh] I'm sure Finn and Rey had a high old time stepping on each other's feet![face_dancing]
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2018
  4. Ewok Poet

    Ewok Poet Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jul 31, 2014
    I'm weeks behind but OMG ARTIFACT AND MEMORY. KOL! CADE! <3 <3 <3

    Next time you do Legacy, tag me, so I can look at it I.M.M.E.D.I.A.T.E.L.L.Y.
     
  5. Chyntuck

    Chyntuck Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 11, 2014
    O-ho, more Mira drabbles, including a Poldo set??? You're spoiling us this time!

    Of course I loved it all, but I'm going to pick a few favourites, starting with Artifact and Memory because I squeed so out loud when I saw Kol, Nat and Cade. I absolutely adore the characters from the Legacy comics and your two drabbles here did such a great job at reconnecting the Skywalker descendants to Anakin and Luke. And not only that, you took them full circle: from the moment Kol and Nat proudly – if cautiously – claim their heritage to the moment when Cade learns to accept it. And of course I completely melted at the mental image of Cade cradling his daughter while Deliah is asleep!

    And POLDO! Where do I even start? With the sneak peek into Holdo's mind when she finds herself facing Poe through the Millennium Falcon's top hatch? With Poe's acknowledgement that, however crazy it is, this is it? With Leia reflections on fulfilment – both for her friend who found Poe in her life, and for herself as the one to carry on with the struggle's legacy? This was already all manners of awesome, but what was even more awesome was Hair and Sunshine with Finn and Rey discovering thanks to Holdo/Poldo things they had been deprived of so far: not big things, sweeping concepts and life-altering choices, but small things like the option to dye your hair for the sake of it, or to dance during a celebration. Despite their being part of the same Resistance, they are just. so. different. from that eccentric admiral from Gatalenta, and there was no better way to show that even after fighting the FO side-by-side their lives are still parsecs apart. =D= ^:)^
     
  6. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    love to see Anakin Solo and Jaina in the set
    And the new canon in week 18 is nice too
     
  7. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2004
    Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts, my friend! I love all of these dear characters so much, and it was all too fun sharing that love here. ;) [face_love][:D]


    Thank-you! :)


    BRODIE!! I can't tell you how happy and honored to see you drop in here. It's been far too long, and I really appreciate your support. [:D] [face_dancing] :D

    That said, it truly was wonderful writing for all of these characters - as you know, Poldo has taken on a life of its own, and, by extension that gave me a great opportunity to skim the surface of Rey and Leia's characters. The ST was definitely something I didn't expect to write for this collection, but now I'm so glad I have. I'm thrilled to hear that you enjoyed both sets so much. [face_love]


    You got it! [face_laugh][:D] I'm honestly due for a re-read, so you never know after that. [face_mischief][face_thinking]

    Thank-you so much for stopping in! :D


    After everything, Cade and Deliah deserve babies and love and happiness and every good thing!! The best thing about these comics is how tangible the feeling of legacy is - well, it's in the title! :p - so to draw on those themes and explore them a little bit here was all sorts of satisfying. [face_love]

    I am thrilled to hear that you enjoyed these - especially as the Captain of the good ship Poldo! ;) I honestly never saw myself writing for the ST, but doing so ended up being very interesting and rewarding, so I honestly want my muse to get off her duff and give me something more to write!

    Thank-you so much for your kind feedback, again - I really appreciate it! [:D] [face_love]


    I am so glad to hear you enjoyed them. Thanks! :)



    I have to thank you all so much for reading, and letting me know what you liked! We are chugging slowly but surely on with Week 19 next . . . :D

    [:D]
     
  8. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2004
    Author's Notes: So, um, I did a thing. At first, I sat down to finally finish this collection like a responsible author and then my hand slipped. You guys should know the routine by now - I liked my overflow drabbles from Week 19 too much to par them down, and I still wanted to share them, so I tacked them on at the end for those who are interested. Just - they're between hepta and deca-drabbles now, so my muse really had a lot to say. :rolleyes: [face_dunno] :p

    That said, I think that I will probably use this thread for storing odds and ends, and maybe even writing for some of the old drabble challenges, after I finish the UDC VIII. I still have lots of ideas swimming about, and I would like to keep everything in one place if at all possible. So, to that end - we're almost there! Just one week to go, now. :D [face_dancing] As always, I thank you guys so much for reading and hope that you enjoy. [:D]



    OoOoO


    Week XIX: “by the student you’ll be taught”

    XCI. Banter

    Sometimes, Anakin feared for his Padawan. This was war, far from the safety of the Temple, and if she continued to push so blindly ahead without listening -

    “ - yes,”
    Obi-Wan wryly interrupted, “headstrong apprentices have been the bane of masters since the inception of the Order, it’s true.”

    “I wasn’t this bad, Obi-Wan!” Anakin huffed. “And our . . . disagreements were just friendly banter. This is different.”

    He could feel Obi-Wan’s amusement, but Anakin couldn’t immediately find another retort. Because, if Obi-Wan was right, and Anakin was only encouraging Ahsoka’s path . . .

    . . . well, maybe Yoda had found the wrong Master for her, after all.



    XCII. Accuse

    “You’re too hard on yourself,” Obi-Wan did not agree in the slightest. “Someday, Ahsoka will make a fine Jedi – all thanks to your guidance.”

    Anakin tried to agree - but his own path had been unorthodox, at best, and he knew that he didn’t fit the traditional mold of Jedi Knight. What if his own faults only shackled her? He wanted the best for Ahsoka, and if that wasn’t him . . .

    “Does that mean you’re claiming all the credit for me?” Anakin tried to deflect his fears, but with little success.

    In answer, Obi-Wan’s eyes were soft. “Only in moments like these.”



    XCIII. Offend

    It was almost offensive, how her father thought his flimsy explanations enough to assuage her curiosity.

    Leia knew that Fulcrum was more than she appeared, with her strange lessons and peculiar brand of wisdom. (And there was such a sadness in her eyes – one that Leia queerly felt echo in her own heart.) Yet, she understood that their Emperor was something uncanny, and it was necessary for her to protect her mind. Bail Organa was being cautious – it didn’t matter that his explanation hovered on the cusp of more.

    “Just clear your mind,” Leia did as Fulcrum instructed, “and breathe.”



    XCIV. Compliment

    He hadn’t sparred like this in over a decade.

    It was refreshing to Kanan, the chance to stretch his abilities, paying close attention to developing his footwork and daring to expand his acrobatics until, eventually, it was difficult to tell a clear winner from their bouts.

    "Look at you," Ahsoka praised, “you’ve come so far.”

    Ruefully, Kanan shrugged. “Not bad for a half-trained Padawan, I think you mean?”

    “I wouldn’t know about that – I was never a Knight, myself,” Ahsoka’s teeth were sharp to flash. “Titles don’t matter to the Force – there’s just you, and how much you trust its presence.”



    XCV. Confide

    Sometimes, the task before him felt monumental. Ezra was a difficult apprentice, and Kanan worried that he didn’t have enough knowledge to pass on. They were the last of their kind, and so much - everything - hinged on his ability to guide Ezra down a much larger path.

    “He’ll never be the last one left – the Force will always find balance,” Hera did not quite agree. “But you are ensuring that your heritage survives. Trust the Force; trust Ezra; and trust yourself . . . just like I do.”

    Though his doubts pulled at him, he tried to make her certainty his own, and believe.



    OoOoO


    XIX-II: “Where You Lead”

    Banter


    Their general was . . . not at all what they’d been trained to expect from the Jedi.

    Every morning, General Kenobi made the habit of sitting with his troops. There, he sipped on his tea while they girded themselves with caf enough to face the day. To pass the time, the general often had . . . questions for each and every one of them. Odd, personal questions.

    “It’s just bizarre,” Crys muttered as they sorted through their platoon sergeants’ reports for the day. Even so, he glanced around as if afraid to even be confused by his Jedi where that same Jedi could hear. “This morning the general asked me for my favorite color – a favorite color! Have you ever heard of anything as ridiculous as that?”

    “Just humor him – he’s still our commanding officer,” Cody shrugged to advise - even while privately considering his own answer to the question. He’d never thought about it before. “He’ll run out of things to say eventually, just like everyone else.”

    . . . only, he didn’t.

    It was already awkward enough giving the general his name – a name that had been expressly forbidden on Kamino; but Kenobi’s attempts at . . . fraternization didn’t stop there. After realizing just how little his men knew of life beyond Kamino, their Jedi seemingly made it his secondary mission to accustom them to as many sights and sounds and tastes and textures as he could. This, is music – Kenobi tried to explain, you dance to it.

    Cody didn’t know if he’d call that . . . droning din from Alderaan music, but his general enjoyed it. Thankfully, General Skywalker didn’t seem to care much for it, either, and he made exaggerated gagging faces whenever he thought Kenobi couldn’t see. (These Jedi, again, were nothing like what they’d been conditioned to expect.) Rex, somehow, didn’t look nearly as confused as Cody felt – but then, he had to acclimate to Skywalker and a rambunctious Padawan; his command was the literal definition of sink or swim.

    If you could go anywhere in the galaxy, where would you go? What would you do with your life, if not for the war? The questions continued – deeply personal and confusing for all that Cody failed to have answers for most of them. Do you have any hobbies? Likes or dislikes?

    Well, he disliked Alderaanian chamber music, Cody could say with all certainty, and he didn’t like most of the tea his general forced him to try. Tea just wasn’t an acceptable alternative to caf – and caf, he most certainly liked. Maybe, just maybe, he was enjoying the volumes of epic Corellian fiction that his general had shared. The fantastical creatures and ancient settings and old-style battles fascinated him, and he’d lost more than a few hours of sleep spent up reading than was probably wise.

    Then, on the planet of Riin, where his men experienced snow for the first time . . .

    “Commander!” Crys and Longshot were almost giddy to share with him. “It melts in your mouth when you try to catch the snowflakes. Look at this!” And then – a dignified soldier of the Republic, Mandalorian-souled and copied from one of the most dangerous men in the galaxy – Longshot took off his helmet and tried to catch the falling snowflakes on his tongue, just as General Skywalker and his Padawan had each abandoned dignity to try themselves.

    At first, Cody only blinked, unable to comprehend what he was seeing. This was not -

    - but his protests were cut short when something struck him between his armored shoulders, shocking him into stillness. It was a projectile made of snow, it took him a moment to understand. And his general -

    - Kenobi looked entirely unrepentant as he shaped another snowball in his hands. The challenge in his smirking gaze was more than evident. And finally, something inside of Cody broke. “Crys, Longshot,” he sank easily into the rigors of command. “Cover me.”

    That single thrown snowball soon turned into an all out brawl – and Skywalker, Cody felt, liked to cheat by sweeping his arms so that entire Force-propelled waves of snow flew to cover his men. The snow was cold and wet and uncomfortable as it melted to sink into their blacks, but, in the end, Cody was proud of just how many times he’d been able to hit his Jedi as compared to the snowballs he took in return. Kenobi’s beard was frosted with snowflakes, and his eyes were bright with mirth for the diversion. Just barely, Cody thought to understand how he felt.

    “For a Jedi,” he offered Kenobi a hand up from the snowbank he’d been barreled into, “I thought you’d have better aim – that showing would have won my men extra rounds at the range to improve their marks.”

    He spoke without thinking, and Kenobi just stared at him as if he’d never seen him before. Cody felt his face flame, wondering if he'd gone too far and rightly deserved a reprimand for his disrespect. He didn't -

    - but then his general laughed, and accepted his proffered hand. Cody pulled him upright with a single motion, and tried to hide his confusion as Obi-Wan clapped a hand on his shoulder. “Quite right you are, Cody – I shamed my training today, it’s true. But I do not know if I would fault my aim so much as applaud your own reflexes. You’re hard to hit.”

    Ignoring where Cody gaped at him – admittedly somewhat still gobsmacked, Kenobi clapped his hands together to say, “Now, I have this new blend of white Caridan sweet-blooms that I think you might enjoy - anything is better than rotting your stomach lining on the GAR’s excuse of caf every day.”

    Shaking his head, Cody met Crys’ resigned expression as General Skywalker sighed outright, and fell into step to march behind his general.



    Accuse

    There were, admittedly, some drawbacks to having one of the more attractive - well, perhaps the most attractive - generals in the GAR.

    If asked what he admired most about his general, Commander Bly would never think to include her physical attributes. Instead, first and foremost, General Secura was poised in a conflict, and she had a clever mind for tactics; in a firefight she was as fluid as an aiwha and as powerful as a Kaminoan typhoon – a potent combination that checked off every box the Mandalorian core of his soul instinctively looked to serve. He couldn’t imagine any other leader for he and his men; if she but snapped her fingers, he’d follow her to the furthest ends of the galaxy and back, no questions asked.

    (Yet, even though his flash training hadn’t covered the . . . stereotypical fascination most humanoid species harbored for Twi’lek women, even he had stared for a moment longer than was proper when he first met Aayla Secura. She was beautiful, he understood on a wholly instinctual level, and that when combined with her power and precision and presence was a heady combination to his heart - one that had no place in the middle of a war, or even for the likes of him at all. So, as with most things he was not allowed to even consider having, he ignored his feelings and moved on.)

    Yet, when others didn’t have the decency to pay her the respect she deserved as both a Jedi and a general in the Grand Army of the Republic - or even simply as a woman and a sentient being with a mind of her own, well -

    . . . no one could ever accuse him of not watching his general’s back.

    After days of intense fighting and heavy losses on both sides of the battlefield, they’d finally liberated the border-world of Biholk from the CIS. While celebrating the return of the Republic’s banner at one of the local establishments, a few of the younger Biholkion men found the courage to become vocal in their opinions of General Secura – vulgarly so. She’d just saved them from a grim future of Separatist servitude, Bly inwardly seethed, and for them to only see with their eyes -

    - he couldn’t let it stand. Not that time.

    In the end, one stern encounter with the command ranks of the 327th in the alley behind the tavern had been enough to put an end to that. “I reckon Cody never has to defend General Kenobi’s honor like that - aren't we lucky?" Scorch had seethed as they returned to the tavern. “I’m not a hundred percent sure about that one, vod – do you care to put creds on it?” Delta didn’t quite agree - and they had all spared a grim laugh to dispel the tension still thrumming through their bones. In their minds, they’d gone much too easy on the punks – who were, in the end, just that. But they were still citizens of the Republic (thanks to General Secura's efforts) and anything more than scaring them just a bit would have seen them sent to Kamino for reconditioning for sure. Yet, for what little they had been able to accomplish, Bly’s knuckles were pleasantly bruised, and something fierce and protective in the core of him couldn’t hold back a feral grin as he returned to his general’s side and picked up his tankard of ale as if nothing had happened.

    (Except, that it had.)

    “Bly,” Aayla’s sigh was soft to chastise, “you cannot confront every sideways glance turned my way. If you choose to start that war, you will never lay down your arms.”

    “I understand that, sir,” he agreed – really, he did. “But, tonight, I could fight this one fight for you – we couldn’t let their disrespect stand.”

    Aayla narrowed her eyes, but Bly continued before she could speak – his blood was still up from their scuffle in the alley and demanding that he fight and defend. He had no ear for detached Jedi maxims just then. “Tonight should be about celebrating you, and everything the Republic has done for this planet. If that’s not what they see – first and foremost – then I'm only all too happy to remind them.” Then, belatedly, he remembered to add, “With all due respect, of course, sir.”

    At first, she looked as if she wanted to argue further - something that an instinct deep inside of him welcomed, even - but she closed her mouth with a delicate clicking of her teeth. Instead of speaking, her brow furrowed to study him. This close, he could see flecks of green and gold in the deep blue of her eyes from the lights behind the bar. After a long moment, she shook her head, and his skin tingled the same as it did when he was too close to her drawing on the Force during the heat of battle.

    “Bly,” her lekku rippled with what he’d since come to understand as curiosity – curiosity, and fondness. “What would I do without you?”

    Pleased, he lifted his tankard to hide his smile, and privately hoped that he’d never have to know.



    Offend

    Generally speaking, it was easier to simply reuse and recycle useful genetic material, rather than the Longnecks investing in intensive upkeep and prosthetic maintenance for their product. Especially with the loss of Jango Fett, the early-most ranks of clones were convenient fodder for birthing new batches of soldiers after they lost their use on the field. It was, simply put, a cold yet efficient process - and he knew where he stood in that equation of supply and demand. Since he was a cadet, Wolffe knew what happened to clone troopers who were less than their brothers, and with his right eye now completely gone and the entire side of his head a mangled mess thanks to Asajj Ventress, he was, quite frankly, surprised that he’d been allowed to hold on for as long as he had. He hadn’t expected to wake up again after passing out from the shock and pain of his wounds on Khorm - except from the eyes of some fresh from the rain, white-armored shiny. That was just the way of things.

    But now he wasn’t being allowed to slip away so easily, and he wasn’t yet inclined to let go of everything he’d allowed himself to be. Ignoring the pitying glances from Patch, his highest ranking medic, he forced himself to stay awake and refused sedatives to return him back to a deep, healing sleep. He couldn’t let himself rest until he knew what was going to happen next; he couldn't throw away what little chance he had to fight.

    Instead, he prepared for when his waiting was rewarded and General Koon finally entered the medbay. Mentally, he’d long rehearsed what he wanted say – knowing as he did that everything now depended on the whims of his commanding officer. Even with just moving to brace his weight up on his elbows, his head spun and black spots bloomed in his vision. Frustratingly, he realized that he was far too dizzy to do anything more than that – as it was, Patch made a disapproving noise and darted forward to scold him back into laying down again. Ignoring his brother, his one remaining eye struggled to focus without the aid of its counterpart and meet the masked gaze of his general.

    “Sir, I promise you, this isn’t as bad as it looks,” Wolffe swallowed his pride as all of his carefully prepared, logical arguments fizzled out likes sparks under water. A snarl fought for a grimace on his features, leaving his expression little more than a contorted wince. Shamefully, he knew that he was on the verge of pleading when he rushed to continue, “I know that I can still be of use to you. If given the chance to prove myself, I will - ”

    But, before he was allowed to finish, his general raised a hand to interrupt him. The unspoken order was effective as any shouted command, and he silenced himself mid-sentence – well trained to the last. By then, he well recognized the presence of the Force as a pressure against his skin, and Patch’s supplies on the table next to him seemed to rattle in their place. He’d passed battles enough alongside his general to understand that he was thrumming with a barely checked power; yet, for what purpose, he couldn’t quite understand.

    Wolffe narrowed the half of his brow he still had left, suddenly unsure of how to proceed – because he realized then that the usually mild mannered and genteel Plo Koon was incensed – hotly so. His general was offended and appalled, even . . . but his anger was not directed at him. The knowledge bewildered Wolffe; he didn’t know what to make of his conclusions.

    With all due respect, General, it doesn’t make strategic sense for someone to come looking for us – if I was in command, I’d be hunting that weapon down, the ghosting memory of another time – another mission gone wrong, tickled at his mind.

    Yet: I value your lives more than finding that weapon, had been their disproving answer in reply, which was so contrary to everything he had been taught to expect from the Jedi and bizarre enough not to make any sense at all. Then, he hadn’t been able to understand his general’s reasoning; he still didn’t – not in whole.

    We’re just clones, sir - we’re made to be expendable, they’d argued. No matter Plo Koon’s claims, he remembered floating in the wreckage of their fleet and fully expecting to join the weightless graveyard of dead vod’e after they ran out of oxygen. No one was coming – not for the likes of them.

    You’re not expendable to me
    , even so, his general had vowed, his voice ringing as loud as a clarion bell. And though it was one thing to hear the words spoken, it was quite another thing to fight off years of intrinsic training and believe. Wolffe couldn’t quite wrap his mind around the idea that his general valued him for himself – he couldn’t quite bring himself to hope and think that maybe, just maybe -

    “ - you will have your sight restored,” after taking a moment to compose himself, that was all Plo Koon needed to say to put his mind at ease. “I will not have another commander serve at my side.”



    Compliment

    At first, Caleb wasn’t sure what to make of his new Master’s battalion – or, rather, he wasn’t sure what his new Master’s battalion made of him. Though it was something he didn’t like to admit, he knew that he was an inexperienced youth who knew nothing of the ways of war. Life beyond Coruscant - beyond the Jedi Temple, even - was all incredibly new to him, and he’d been thrown into the deep end of overseeing the lives of his Master’s troops on the battlefield without any training to prepare him for the role. He was doggedly trying his best to learn and keep up, but his progress was slow going – frustratingly so. Everything was just so new to him - oftentimes in ways he could only just begin to wrap his mind around. That must have frustrated the clones as much as it shamed Caleb; he couldn’t seem to gain his footing, and their lives were the ones at stake while he fumbled.

    Yet, every day Caleb woke up determined to do better than the last. He would do his Master and the Jedi Order proud, just as he would take pride in himself, until, someday, the men too would come to value him. That morning, Commander Grey and Captain Styles arrived at the command tent before the suns completely rose in the sky, and while they made their reports to Master Billaba, Caleb stared. Something about them wasn’t the same as the day before; something had changed. His nose crinkled and his brow furrowed, because there, right there -

    “You added a new stripe to your armor,” Caleb noticed. Where both had sported one bold line over their arms and helmets the night before, another red-orange band had been added since then. The two stripes, winding side by side, stood out to him – this, the Force pressed, was significant. This meant something to him, personally, and he was curious to know what.

    It was Styles who grinned, and proudly tilted his head up to explain, “Yeah, that’s fresh paint you see – we have two Jetii now, and that deserves to be honored. Some battalions don’t even have one, you know – your joining us is good luck on the battlefield.”

    Bewildered, it took Caleb a moment to understand that the clone was boasting. Caleb could feel his pride – even his fondness, shine like a bright white light in the Force, and he couldn’t immediately understand why that pride and fondness centered around him. It felt out of place next to his own self-awareness of his limitations. He didn’t quite understand what the clone saw in him, when he himself only saw every step he still had to climb in the mountain looming before him.

    “Take that, 501st,” Styles continued, slapping one closed fist against the palm of his opposite hand to punctuate his words. “Maybe we can shut up Fives’ bragging now - that blasted ARC doesn’t know when to quit.”

    He was gaping like a kola-fish out of water, Caleb knew. From the other side of the tactical table, he knew that Depa was staring at him from underneath her lowered lashes and unsuccessfully trying to fight a smile. He could feel her pride and amusement touch him through the Force, and the soft assurance of her approval was an anchor amongst the sudden turbulence of his own thoughts. He was honored by the thoughtfulness of the clones – truly he was; he wasn’t ignorant to the significance of the gesture. Painting their armor and bodies were one of the few ways they had to express their individuality, and they had chosen to include him in their identity – him, inexperienced and floundering as he was. The idea was . . . humbling, in such an enormous way. He suddenly felt very, very small underneath the weight of his duty. He wasn’t quite sure if he deserved such an honor; not just then, not yet.

    While Styles happily traced the new stripe on his right forearm with his opposite hand, Grey was more subdued than his brother. “You’ll do great things here, Commander,” well used to breaking in shinies on the battlefield, Grey was the one who understood the honest surprise Caleb couldn’t even begin to keep from his expression. He understood . . . but he didn’t agree. Softly, he added, “We can’t wait to see how you grow from here.”



    Confide

    It was just like old times – sitting together outside the command tent, huddled around the thermal heater’s light and warmth, and simply enjoying the beauty of the night sky while planetside.

    If she but closed her eyes, Ahsoka Tano could almost pretend that nothing had changed . . . even if everything was so vastly, incredibly different than it was before.

    She thought that Rex felt something similar – he kept stealing sideways glances at her every other minute or so, as if he was afraid that she would disappear if he looked away for too long. He, at least, was a familiar face amongst the 501st – there were so many who had fallen during her year away. Rex and Kix and Jesse, Ahsoka knew – knew as well as her own self, even. Yet, beyond them, there were so many empty places. Tup . . . Fives . . . their deaths were still painfully fresh for her, and grief for their passing welled like a stone in her throat. The war had taken too much, from too many – now for far too long.

    They didn’t think that Maul would attack in the night – rather, he’d wait for them to come to him. So, they were ready to march on the beleaguered New Mandalorian capitol of Sundari come morning. Until then, they had a few hours to rest and prepare for battle. In the meantime, it was a familiar scene from her memories: watching Rex as he took advantage of the respite to freshen the paint on his armor – emphasizing the bands of blue highlighting his shoulders and arms and brightening the crown of jaig eyes above his visor. But there was something different about his routine just then, there was something -

    “ - orange?” Ahsoka peered over to better see, curious as to the change from the hallowed 501st blue. “What’s that for?”

    Rex only shrugged his black clad shoulders as if to play at nonchalance – but there was something soft, almost pleased, tucked behind his expression. (His eyes had turned so shadowed since she’d left – shadowed the way that Anakin’s were shadowed; they’d done nothing but darken since Umbara – since Kadavo and the gross mockery of her trial and Fives. That old, familiar light she’d once thrived for seeing was now slow to return.) “You’ll see,” he said, and at the vague answer, she huffed and fought a lopsided grin.

    “So secretive,” she teased.

    “We’re allowed these little pleasures, General; you’ll just have to wait patiently until it’s done,” Rex returned – and for what was said so flippantly, Ahsoka felt as a piercing between her rib-bones. Nothing about this war was right – that, she understood all the better since leaving the Jedi Order. But she had no idea how to fix it; she had no idea how to relieve the burden on her men, or on her former Master, and that knowledge troubled her. The Force was trying to tell her something, and that something was ever just beyond her reach – hovering behind a wispy grey veil she could never completely part to see in full.

    Yet, when the paint he painstakingly applied to his helmet took on a familiar design over the brow, and then formed the shape of not-quite-wings spanning the cheeks, she saw, and understood -

    “ - those are my markings,” Ahsoka breathed.

    “So they are, sir,” Rex confirmed, something glittering in his expression. “We . . . well, I wanted to do something to honor your return. The men were quick to agree.”

    The words startled her – and she looked around to see that, sure enough, Rex wasn’t the only trooper applying the bold orange crest to his helmet; many others were doing the same. She knew what this form of expression meant to the men - she knew how it served to define their identity as individuals, such as they were allowed. For them to claim her, to willingly choose to follow her, she . . .

    Her hands shook as the enormity of her role settled in upon her shoulders. With Anakin recalled to the capitol with Master Kenobi following the chancellor’s kidnapping, their task to subdue Maul and free the Mandalorian sector was of critical, monumental importance. And they trusted her to see this through; even after Umbara and Tarkin and Fives -

    - she closed her eyes, and had to regulate her breathing to control the suddenly thin cast of her lungs. When she exhaled, it was with a high whistling sound that was all grief and hope and a challenge in her childhood tongue. They had lost so much - too much, and they stood to lose even more upon the morning. Yet, after, when the war was finished, for all those who were left standing . . .

    Ahsoka opened her eyes and vowed that, just as these men had so long fought for them, she would find a way to fight for them. Her path was clear and illuminated before her; she’d allow herself no other way.

    So, she reached over, and in a moment of boldness covered Rex’s hand with her own, pressing his palm down against the newly dried markings. Her hands were no longer a child’s hands, and the deep sienna of her skin was a near perfect match for the rich color of the freshly applied paint beneath.

    “It’s good to be back, Rexter,” she allowed the words to seep with every conflicting emotion she felt – and everything else that she couldn’t quite say aloud. She thought that maybe - just maybe, he felt the same; he understood.

    “And it’s good to have you back . . . Ahsoka,” Rex covered his opposite hand over her own, and after a moment’s hesitation, gently squeezed. And there, on another battlefield just like so many others, she felt a moment’s warmth in the dark.



    OoOoO

    Offend: The italicized dialogue is taken from episode 1x02 of TCW. Yep, Plo Koon has long since thrown Jedi attachment out the window and adopted an entire battalion and the grumpiest clone of all. ;)

    Rex's Helmet: Is taken from the concept art that Dave Filoni drew up for the final Siege of Mandalore and Order 66 plotlines, which were, of course, scrapped when Disney bought Star Wars. :( But I love the idea something fierce, you have to know. ;) [face_love]

    Vod/Vod'e: Sibling/Siblings in Mando'a



    ~MJ @};-
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2018
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  9. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host Who Loves Fanfics & RPGs star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    LOL for the warmth between Kenobi and Anakin in Banter & Accuse. Offend: -- yes Leia is perceptive. Compliment and Confide: [face_dancing] [face_love] Kanan!!! His concerns shared with Hera, so natural to feel those things and let her assuage them. @};-

    The longer set -- of these, I adored the Rex/Ahsoka feels! =D=
     
  10. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Love your sets with Kenobi and Anakin and the longer ones are expressing the feelings of clones and generals. Love them
     
  11. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2004
    Thank-you so much @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha, and @earlybird-obi-wan for your kind words. I always appreciate your comments! [face_love][:D]

    So, I have Week 20 finally done - I know, almost a full year later, but done is done! ;) [face_dancing] I still have some lingering ideas for ficlets and drabbles that I want to write from the previous UDCs - so watch this space. As always, it's been a joy writing for you guys and I hope that you enjoy. :)



    OoOoO


    Week XX: “worth fighting for”

    XCVI. Outrage


    Like all mothers, she lived to give her child more than she had known. And now, in returning Anakin to his father, she could give her son the stars and everything they held. She had nothing else to offer but sand and chains.

    (Yet, no matter her higher reasoning, her spirit screamed for their parting. Her will was iron to hush that age old instinct, and say: what does your heart tell you? She’d meet him again, of that she was certain.)

    Shmi Skywalker bowed her head, and entrusted what she cherished most to the will of the Force.



    XCVII. Outright

    Somewhere amongst the stars, a war raged for the freedom of the galaxy.

    It was an old, familiar song, but one that Obi-Wan Kenobi could no longer sing outright. Instead, he let the suns wear on him as he watched over the son of his apprentice. He was there in Anakin’s place for Luke’s first steps, his first words, and then more distantly as he grew. He was the first to place a lightsaber in his hands; he gave the Force a name to the son of the Chosen.

    And Obi-Wan carried on, sword in hand, much as he ever had.



    XCVIII. Maps

    Even without his eyes, he remembered every part of her: from the curve of her cheeks to the slope of her nose and the shape of her lips. Gently, his fingertips traced her face, relearning her.

    “Caleb . . . love,” Hera’s voice caught, with her accent tugging on her vowels in her grief. In the Force she was supernova bright, calling to him; to that, he would never be blind.

    “Hush,” he soothed. “I can still see you; how could I not see you?”

    Kanan would give everything for his memory of the Republic, but she already had that of him and more.



    XCIX. Keys

    She’d gone most of her life knowing that something was missing.

    Leia knew she was adopted - but she’d never call her birth-parents irreplaceable when Bail and Breha Organa had shaped her into the woman she was. Alderaan had been everything she needed, and more. Yet . . .

    My father has it . . . my
    sister has it.

    Somehow, it was a truth she’d always known. She was bound to Luke in a way she couldn’t explain – she felt him within her bones and in her heart. Her brother. After losing so much, for so long, Leia took this one piece back for herself, and held it close.



    C. Home

    Once, he had everything to fight for – a home, a family he’d created for himself. From his Master and Padawan to his comrades-in-arms and his wife . . .

    . . . and now he had his daughter; his son.

    Luke’s turmoil tore at him, but how could he explain the peace in his parting – the relief? In this, there was balance – balance, as his son had finally allowed him to restore for all.

    You’re going to live, I’m going to save you.

    Yet . . . he already had.

    Darth Vader closed his eyes, and allowed the Force to call Anakin Skywalker home.



    ~MJ @};-
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2018
  12. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host Who Loves Fanfics & RPGs star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Maps Gorgeous and wonderfully poignant tenderness with Kanera [face_love]
    Keys This is indescribably sweet and true. A gift that Leia deserves, to find a piece of herself, a part of her heart & blood family. [face_dancing]
    Home =D= That last line was JUST. Perfection.

    @};-
    @Mira_Jade I find exquisite delight in every word you write, for any and all fandoms LOL and thank you for the joy of reading your lyrical offerings.

    ^:)^
    [:D]
     
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  13. Findswoman

    Findswoman Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Good golly, have I fallen behind on these too? :eek: Looks like it—but I’m always stoked to see your works, and big congratulations to you for having completed all twenty prompt sets! =D= Absolutely amazing, though I never doubted you would. :D

    17 and 18: Two very different sets, but both exhibiting the characteristic Mira panache and lyricism we know and love. :) In no. 17 you give us a wonderfully far-reaching chronicle of the Skywalker dynasty and its legacy of both light and darkness, and I love how it reaches all the way to the Legacy era. No. 18 is my first encounter so far with the Poldo phenomenon, and you give these two so much warmth and charm; I liked Holdo a lot in TLJ, and it’s fun to see an AU in which she survives and gets to enjoy some happiness of her own. It was especially cool that she and Rey got a drabble together—such very different women, both fighting for the same side in such completely different ways, and I loved Leia’s moment of reflection on her losses too. And I can see Finn and Rey being amazing, enthusiastic dancers, too! [face_dancing]

    19-1: First of all, I love the title of this: students really are some of the best teachers there are. And you’ve set up a wonderful chain of them here: Anakin as Obi-Wan’s student, Ahsoka as Anakin’s student, and both Leia and Kanan as students of Ahsoka, in different ways, and Ezra as Kanan’s student. All of the teachers come to the business of teaching with their own doubts about their student: too headstrong, too far outside the mold, too few others around. And the learners have their own doubts too: Anakin huffing that he “wasn’t that bad," Leia not being so sure about her dad’s thinly veiled explanations about Fulcrum. (And I have to say I adore the idea of Fulcrum watching out for Leia the way Obi-Wan did for Luke; there’s just no way her adoptive parents couldn’t have been aware of her Force-sensitivity, too, and taken steps to cultivate it.) But none of the teachers and students here are without some kind of encouragement, whether from each other or from someone else (e.g., Hera for Kanan), and that little bit will make a huge difference in each case.

    19-2: A wonderful bonus treat! Although I have yet to see TCW, I always enjoy the sensitive approach you bring to the clones and to their interaction with “their” respective Jedi. I loved the image of Obi-Wan hanging out with his troops over tea, introducing them to art, literature, and music—such a him thing to do—and of course the snowball fight was absolutely priceless. :D You have Bly navigating his many and varied thoughts and feelings about General Secura in a thoughtful and believable way: of course, he’s got a bit of a crush lurking under there, but his respect for Aayla as a fighter and his CO are just as real and sincere—by no means just a cover-up for any other feelings.

    I smiled to see Wolfe, and it was something really special to be able to get inside his head and read his own thoughts on his own expendability—and I wanted to shake Master Koon’s hand for the way his respect for his second-in-command’s humanity played a role in saving his life. Always a treat to see Caleb; what an amazing moment that must have been for him as a padawan, to see his master’s soldiers honoring him, too, as one of their own Jetii—and totally understandable that it would cause him some consternation, too: can he live up to it? (Of course! :kanan: ) And Ahsoka feels something similar, and perhaps more, as she sees Rex’s new paintjob honoring her, with its montral-like design and such a close color match; I too loved the tender moment of their hands touching. Beautiful work on all of these, and of course I just want to take a bath in your beautiful descriptions and word choices. :D

    20: And you’ve made it home! Love how this group touches both the very beginning and the very end of the Saga we know and love; it really fits with this group of prompts somehow. All of the characters here find closure and peace in some form or other: Obi-Wan in passing the baton (well, the lightsaber :p ) to little Luke, Leia in the full realization of her Force heritage (and while we’re on the topic of underrepresented aspects of her character, thank you so much for giving her this one), even Shmi in giving her beloved child over to the will of the Force (his father, yes! <3 ). Plus an absolutely beautiful Kanera moment—they truly are a model SW couple, whose love transcends the boundaries of the senses. Finally, what a lovely sendoff for Vader-Anakin—I just adore the idea of that farewell moment being the one that restores the Force’s balance. Indeed, what the heck, I’ll make that my heart canon! [face_love]

    Once again, a big congratulations on making it through this challenging challenge! (And hosting it, too; it’s really been a tour de force all around.) =D= Following these has been such an amazing treat—I know I often fell behind in commenting, but that in no wise means I haven’t enjoyed every word. Bravissima, ma’am, and always keep up the fantastic work! =D=
     
  14. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    No matter whether you write something short or long, you are always straight in character and take us into beautiful minds and/ or relationships.

    Sorry that I am late commenting. RL demands a lot of me these days.
     
  15. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    a fitting end to your drabbles with Anakin, Obi-Wan, Leia and Luke
     
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  16. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    Wonderful Finale, Mira! My favorites were Outright and Maps, but Home struck cord as well
    This line reminded me very much of the warrior monk. Samurai.
    also...
    A ver touching moment between Kanan and Hera. (No, that pun was not intended, but it is soooo good. :p)
    Goosebumps. Just goosebumps. :anakin:

    Congratulations on finishing the challenge!