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  1. In Memory of LAJ_FETT: Please share your remembrances and condolences HERE

Before - Legends Victory - Kessel Run Challenge 2023

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Vek Talis , Jan 9, 2023.

  1. Vek Talis

    Vek Talis Mods' Dare Challenge 1st Place Winner star 3 VIP - Game Winner

    Registered:
    Oct 12, 2018
    Title: Victory
    Author: Vek Talis
    Length: Vignette
    Timeframe: 171 years before KotOR 4127 BBY approx.
    Genre: Tragedy
    Characters: OCs
    Disclaimer: I don't own Star Wars and never will.
    Note: This is for the Kessel Run Challenge. May the Force have mercy on my essence.



    ~ * ~ * ~ * ~

    He had not been courageous. In fact, he'd run away. Stowed away, more accurately, in the bowels of a freighter that had delivered supplies to the Jedi enclave on Dantooine. He was just a boy, ripped from his mother's embrace all too soon. Sometimes, the Jedi had no idea how cruel they were.

    His connections had been obvious to Vek, as soon as he'd been brought in. As a Force sensitive, the Jedi said they had an obligation to find people like him. Hoit. His name was Hoit and his fear was palpable, as was his potential.

    Vek stared at the frozen boy, there in the newly fallen snow. Autumn leaves still clung desperately to a sleeping tree, its skeletal branches drooping, as if reaching for the little body cradled between its roots. All he'd wanted, he'd told Vek in the enclave, cold walls surrounding him, was his mother. The Jedi tore him from her and he hated them for it.

    When the masters discovered Hoit missing, they'd called upon Vek to search, as they'd had more 'important' matters. Vek nodded, didn't dare reveal the disgust he felt for their disregard for the boy they'd stolen and then forgotten.

    It had been a simple matter to deduce how Hoit had escaped the enclave. As an apprentice, he was tagged and forbidden from leaving. None of the doors out would have opened to him. He must have hidden aboard a ship. Since there was only one docked when he disappeared, Vek hunted it down easily enough.

    The ship dropped off supplies to an automated station at the north pole of Dubrillion. Hoit must have been in the hold and fallen out. Winter was mild, even here at the pole, but cold enough.

    As Vek stretched out, he caught a lingering sense of anguish and wild rage. Hoit had already been turning toward the Dark Side, even as he'd been in the bosom of the Jedi. Those who had taken him away from the only family he'd ever known to keep him from the Dark Side, had contributed to his fall.

    “There has to be some poetic... not justice, but something, in that,” Vek said. Something beeped in the boy's robes. Vek pulled out a datapad. It was a journal.

    I am mad. I hate the Jedi. I can feel I want to hurt them. Momma wouldn't want that. I have to hide. Momma would want them safe.

    Hoit had run. Vek closed his eyes, said a silent prayer to the Force on Hoit's behalf. No, he hadn't been courageous, but he'd won a victory, of sorts, over the darkness the Jedi helped inflict on his soul.

    Vek deactivated the pad, stuck it in his robes. The masters would be... detached from the news. There would be concern, compassion, but only for what might have been, the lost potential. “A seed that was destined to fall, regardless of our interventions,” Master Nur'rovo would say. “Nothing to be done for the problem but try harder,” Master Iobat, sightless – in more ways than one – would say after sighing deeply.

    And nothing would change. Vek shook his head slowly as he scooped up the little body, carried it to his ship. Sometimes, the only victory was in death. And if that wasn't a judgment against the sad and sorry state of the galaxy, Vek didn't know what would be.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2023
  2. UltramassiveUbersue

    UltramassiveUbersue Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Nov 7, 2022
    :_|

    I love the juxtaposition of the title and its subject and how it expresses the sad irony in Hoit's selfless act and tragic end. Poor little guy deserved better, and I wonder how this will affect Vek's relationship with the Jedi in the future as he grapples with this.
     
  3. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Poor child, dead because he was one of the Jedi initates. What will happen to Vek after experiencing this?
     
  4. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The (FavoriteTM) Fanfic Mod With the Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2004
    First, I have to say a very hearty welcome back! It's great to see you posting again, especially in such a great challenge like the Kessel Run. :D [:D]

    This was an awful visual, artfully expressed. =((

    That rather sums this entire vignette up. This poor child. Even when children are freely given (I don't know my KotOR lore for the Jedi well enough except to say that Revan definitely had disagreements with the Order founded on very valid reasons - in the beginning, anyway o_O), as thankfully seems to be the case in the PT, and young enough not to feel the grief of separation as intensely, it has to be . . . difficult, to say the least - especially when you're a child grappling with preternatural powers based largely on your emotions. There are arguments you can make for and against the Jedi's dogmas regarding attachment (even if I'm personally all for chucking those rules out of the window :p) and this is definitely a valid argument against. [face_plain]

    Well then. The level of detachment here is something else. [face_bleh]

    And in that, the youngling won. =(( This was absolutely heartbreaking, but a clever way to tie together the prompts and your title. Congratulations, but you scored all the marks for tragedy. ;)



    Your run is off to an excellent start! Keep up the good work. =D=
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2023
  5. Nehru_Amidala

    Nehru_Amidala Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Oct 3, 2016
    As someone who teaches small children (about 2 years old), this hit pretty close to home. A child's death is tragic, even worse if it's an accident. What bothers me most is the older Jedi's lack of comfort for Vek. He already feels horrible, he needs comfort and validation.
     
  6. Vek Talis

    Vek Talis Mods' Dare Challenge 1st Place Winner star 3 VIP - Game Winner

    Registered:
    Oct 12, 2018
    Thank you, my friend. :) Yes, the poor guy deserved better. Sadly, life isn't about what we deserve, but about what we get and how we deal with it to the best of our abilities.
    And Vek... gets by. ;)


    Sometimes, there is no good decision in life. Take someone away who could become a danger, and then deal with the consequences, or let the Sith get hold of them? And Vek... manages. ;)


    Thank you, Mira_Jade; it's good to have some ideas for fics again. :) And marvelous to have such lovely readers. :)


    Most of the stuffy Jedi thought having compassion meant jumping into bed with each other. But that was only a small part of what Revan wanted to bring to them. :p


    Tragedy is only comedy turned topsy-turvy. [face_batting]



    Too true. But Vek's tougher than he looks. At least, that's what he tells himself. :rolleyes: Thanks for enjoying!

    All righty, for my next trick, watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat. Erm, that should be, the second challenge begins... below!

    Title: Nevermind
    Author: Vek Talis
    Length: Vignette
    Timeframe: 171 years before KotOR 4127 BBY approx.
    Genre: Tongue-in-cheek (does that even qualify as a 'genre'?)
    Characters: Ocs (new OC Aloshla Babry as main character)
    Disclaimer: I don't own Star Wars and never will.
    Note: This is for the Kessel Run Challenge. May the Force have mercy on my essence. Word count = 707
    Additional Note: I sometimes select names with this lovely generator. The main character of this fic was taken from here I wish to give praise where praise is due. Togruta names - Star Wars The Old Republic (fantasynamegenerators.com)

    Challenge: Week 2 | January 16-23
    • Write a story between 400 and 800 words using second-person POV in which a character is lost.
    • Word limit = 400-800 words


    ~ * ~ * ~ * ~


    Master Iobat sighs enormously. "Nothing to do for the problem but try harder," you hear him say. "Apprentice Hoit's legacy will be that we must redouble our efforts to make certain not one child is left behind again."

    You turn, watching Knight Vek Talis's eyes roll back into his head, unseen by the masters. He is a wise, but melancholy man, who would no doubt inform you of his ignorance if you dared call him 'wise' to his face.

    =Tech Babry, report to the combat training centre of the enclave.= You acknowledge your ping and hurry out of the forum chamber. As one of the few maintenance workers of the enclave, it's been your duty for four years to fix every fresher and food synthesizer in the enclave. Poor Jedi, so helpless to feed themselves and unclog a simple fresher. You shake your head, feeling a silly grin spread across your face as you hurry to the lift.

    "What is it, ma'am?" you ask Administrator Lessel on the lowest level of the enclave.

    "Apparently, the Jedi have lost themselves another apprentice." Administrator Lessel brushes back a lock of auburn hair from her face.

    You hide a grin – many humans seem stuck to this notion that they are all holovid stars if they have wavy hair with which to frame their asymmetrical faces. Of course, losing a youngling is bad, so you furrow your brow and try to act serious. "Is there anything I can do to help them grieve, Administrator?"

    Lessel cocks an eyebrow at you, pursing her ever pouty lips for a moment. "No one has died, Aloshla, at least not since that poor Hoit turned up dead." She strides over to the nearest wall, glances down at an open ventilation hatch. "A young girl, another troublesome apprentice, has gone missing. Lost, was the word the Jedi used, here in this enclave. She was last seen here and this grate has been removed. We need to locate her, she may be lost and afraid."

    You already said lost, you ninny, you think. However, you would never say such words to your boss. Instead, you nod. "Yes, Administrator. I will attempt to find the child."

    Jedi... humans... they are all so helpless, you think as you wait for the lift. When it opens, Knight Talis stands inside, arms folded across his chest. He starts out of the lift, only to pause as you walk toward it. The look on his face is... amused?

    "Knight Talis," you say and nod your head to him.

    "We Jedi rely so much on the Force, that when presented with... mundane concerns, we occasionally go to pieces," Knight Talis said before he turns a half smirk on you and nods in return. "Wouldn't you say that is so, Tech Babry?" His raised eyebrow is... ironic? Could he have read your mind?

    "I-I wouldn't know, Knight Talis," you stammer. He continues forward, leaving the lift empty for you. It stops at the middle underground level. There is a simple fix to this problem. In the healer ward stands a computer, rarely touched by the Jedi. You occasionally are required to dust the console's surface; it is often very dusty.

    You push a few buttons and the console activates. A few more presses, and the screen pulls up a map of the enclave. A red signature is quickly zoomed in and begins to beep. "I see," you say and lean down. Beside the computer is a ventilation hatch. You pry it open, taking a torch from your pocket and shine it inside. "Please come here; I'm here to help you," you say to the girl playfully trying to scoot away.

    "Aww, no more fun," the little girl, human, but cute in golden curls, says and scurries forward. "You cheat at hide and seek."

    "I know how," you say and give her a helping hand out of the ventilation shaft.

    As you present the little girl to Administrator Lessel, she leans her head back, tossing her auburn hair this way, then that. "I'm glad that's dealt with, at least," she says. "One more job off my plate."

    Behind her, Knight Talis gives you a knowing smirk before turning on his heel and stalking away.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2023
  7. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    I like the OC tech and the view on the Jedi and their quirks. Great response to the challenge
     
  8. Nehru_Amidala

    Nehru_Amidala Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Nice vignette, appreciated the lighter tone. More than one way to be lost, it seems.
     
  9. UltramassiveUbersue

    UltramassiveUbersue Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Nov 7, 2022
    Great job-- I love how you're continuing the story and shifting the tone, giving the sense that life goes on and there are a lot of different ways to move forward.

    Oh, the defeatism and lack of insight is sad. In just these words, you communicate the moral and intellectual stagnation of the Jedi Order's leadership-- well done!

    Great characterization here. :)
    I find their lack of life skills disturbing.... another great comment on the state of the Jedi Order at this point in its history.

    ....yeesh, can't let a thing like tragedy get in the way of a good burn, right? His detachment from compassion is disturbing, and I like how you show that he knows his reaction is inappropriate and that it's in his own best interest to keep it in check.

    The irritability is strong in this one!

    I love that Vek's calling him out on his contempt. He's clearly not used to this, even though Vek's abilities are apparently typical. I wonder if it's because the rest of the Jedi aren't paying attention, or if Vek's apparent dysthymia means he has the same kind of negative thoughts but chooses to challenge them and uphold his personal values.

    [face_laugh]
    On the one hand, it's charming that he plays with the kids. On the other hand, he's a bit too Chaotic Neutral for my comfort...

    Awesome characterization all around-- and Babry is a very entertaining new character that I'd love to read more about. :D
     
  10. Findswoman

    Findswoman Fanfic and Pancakes and Waffles Mod (in Pink) star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Catching up! :D

    "Victory": Ooh, ouch! That is so sad. That poor, poor kid. We (and Vek) are apparently just seeing the tip of some terrible iceberg here, especially if Hoit felt that running away (and putting himself into this kind of danger) was the only alternative. It iso, so true that sometimes there really is nothing at all one can do, and that the only victory is in giving up. But all the same: :_| !

    "Nevermind": Oh ho, the story continues, from a very interesting perspective! I like Aloshla Babry already; she picks up on things, like on the Jedi tendency to overdepend on the Force—and on the administrator's "not really my problem" attitude (which Vek clearly has picked up on too). This blond-haired kid was lost, like the one in the previous story—but I get the feeling that at least some of the people who are supposed to be taking care of her and teaching her are somewhat lost as well. You've set up an interesting sequence of events here here; I'll be curious to see if it gets continued in future challenge weeks. :cool:

    Incidentally, I know "Victory" is the title of the first story, but do you mean for it to also be the title of the entire story anthology/thread? Just checking, as I wasn't sure at first which of the two it was, or both. :)
     
  11. amidalachick

    amidalachick Chosen One star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 3, 2003
    Oh, I really enjoyed both of these!

    Poor boy. :( The imagery here is so cold and stark and just a gorgeous description of something so sad. The Jedi are not the 'good guys' and heroes, here.

    Great line! And a really interesting character that I'd like to read more of.

    Great work so far! :)
     
  12. Chyntuck

    Chyntuck Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 11, 2014
    "Nevermind" is certainly a welcome note of levity after the tragedy of "Victory", but even so, these two short fics put together make for a powerful story about the failings of the Jedi of the Old Republic. I'm not very knowledgeable about this period, but the way you depict them really hit home. The "these are the rules, this is how the world should be" mentality doesn't allow them to look properly after their wards, be it a small child who can't cope with being torn apart from his family, or a happy one who just wants to play hide-and-seek. Between Vek Talis who sees that Hoit was turning to the dark side precisely between the Jedi took him in, and "Muggle" Aloshla who can figure out where the little girl has gone in minutes where all the masters with their Force powers can't, you depict here a very dysfunctional Jedi Order indeed. I love this premise, so I'll stick around waiting for more!
     
  13. Vek Talis

    Vek Talis Mods' Dare Challenge 1st Place Winner star 3 VIP - Game Winner

    Registered:
    Oct 12, 2018
    Thank you, earlybird-obi-wan. Yes, the Jedi can be quite... disturbing, can't they? ;)


    Oh, indeed. Lots of ways to be lost. Thanks for reading. :)




    Poor Jedi. Put them in real life situations and watch them go to pieces.

    Lol! How true. How many of us have wanted to tell our bosses off in real life, though? :p

    Aloshla is pretty charming, eh? And Chaotic neutral... :p I took that test and got Lawful/Good as a result. Shows you what tests are worth. ;) Thanks for reading/enjoying!


    Thanks, Master. I'm glad you took so much away from my work. :)

    Very insightful. :)

    Ah, yes. I hadn't realized that was how to start the thread. But yes, at the same time, Victory could probably be looked at as the main theme or title for the entire thread, as well as the title of the first story. Thanks for reading! :)


    Thank you, amidalachick! Most everyone can be looked at as 'good' or 'bad' guys... from a certain point of view. Waits to have stuff thrown at him.


    Thank you, Chyntuck. I appreciate the kind words. Yes, the Jedi of old weren't as well ordered (pardon the pun) as they'd like the galaxy to believe, eh? After all, they manipulated as easily as the Sith (just look at what they did to the poor Revan). But they had their reasons, so they think it was justified.


    All right, managed to get my challenge done, despite the... challenges of Darth Real Life.

    Title: Depravity
    Author: Vek Talis
    Length: Vignette
    Timeframe: 171 years before KotOR 4127 BBY approx.
    Genre: Drama-action
    Characters: Vandar (KotOR), OCs Vek Talis, Vizif (new OC Xova)
    Disclaimer: I don't own Star Wars and never will.
    Note: This is for the Kessel Run Challenge. May the Force have mercy on my essence. Word count = 806

    Write a story between 500 and 1,000 words in which you make up a new OC (original character). Your OC must interact with at least one EC (established character), and your story must include the following line of dialogue: “Something was bound to go right sometime today.”
    Word limit = 500-1,000 words

    ~ * ~ * ~ * ~

    Xova surveyed the scene. The control center of Telos' planetary defense network had been woefully undermanned. No Zabrak commander would allow such an avoidable disaster to occur. The fact that a planet dominated by humans would do so... Well, it just goes to show that humans aren't so capable. Numerous, aye, but capable? Xova shook her head. No, humans were better at talking about their merits than showing them off.

    “Focus, Xova.” Vizif, her master, filled up with the Force. Xova observed it happening as a transformation in her demeanor. Vizif's cheeks flushed, she shrunk in on herself, as if attempting to avoid an unseen predator, and her head shifted, ever so slightly at the faintest of sounds. “There is a Sith apprentice... through that door,” she whispered, pointing. “Do you sense him?”

    Xova closed her eyes. She gathered the Force around her as a physical thing. A Zabrak went straight at her foe, or else found a clever way around. There was indeed a life-form beyond the door leading, presumably, into offices adjacent to the control center. “Yes, Master. He... searches for something,” Xova whispered.

    The Sith were in control of the orbital station. They'd surprised Telos' otherwise adequate defense forces and stormed aboard the station, though no one knew what they were after. The defense network couldn't be turned against the planet, after all.

    Blaster bolts slammed into the wall behind Xova. Neither Jedi was particularly startled. They knew who was guarding their rears from Sith troopers. “My bad,” Knight Talis said from the connecting hallway. “I'll see if I can draw them down the next corridor.” His lightsaber flashed, diverting another couple of bolts. In a flash of his own, he took off down the hallway, Sith troopers obligingly taking his distraction.

    “Now that the circus has gone,” Xova said, reaching for the hilt of her own saber.

    “Vek is... creative,” Vizif said, a playful smirk on her face.

    Xova didn't care for Vek or his FrAGish antics. “That human will have a bad end, Master,” she said, not that it mattered to her, though she was somewhat fond of her master and knew Vizif had a soft spot for her first padawan. Forbearing to speak further, Xova sprang into action. She positioned herself beside the door and used the Force to toss a piece of junk at the wall.

    When the door opened, a human in black robes emerged, glancing this way, then that. His red blade flared to life and Xova pounced, sending a Force blast to stun him, then knocked away his saber. The Sith had spunk, though. He grabbed her right arm to hold back her counter strike, then rabbit punched her in the nose, staggering her backward.

    Vizif darted past, into the offices. Xova shook her dazed head, then rammed her shoulder into the apprentice, sending him sprawling on the floor. Growling, he called his blade to him. Red blurred as he spun it in several arcs around his head and torso.

    Xova gathered the Force to her, allowing the energy to guide her hand. When the Sith sprang forward, Xova lunged. The Sith grunted, dropped his blade, and slid off hers, thudding onto the durasteel floor.

    The large double doors in front of Xova suddenly began to open. A couple of Sith Masters and apprentices turned her way. For a brief moment, Xova allowed fear to penetrate her. The Force chilled as the Sith glared and snarled at her, their crimson single and double blades bared like sinister phalli. A sharp echo bit her. A child, barely more than a toddler. Men. A human and a... a zabrak, so familiar to Xova that he wore her face. She hovered above, trying to tear herself away from the disquieting vision... no, memory.

    Violently, Xova tried to cast the vision away. Suddenly, Masters Vandar and Nor'rovo from the Dantooine enclave, and several others she didn't recognize from Coruscant, rushed past her. Her own master and Knight Talis also joined the fray. However, the padawan was nearly paralyzed with rage and terror. The memory was gone, but in its wake, terrible anguish.

    When it was over, she realized she needed to breathe. All the Sith were dead. One of the Jedi was down and Master Vandar stood before her. “You should speak with your master as soon as we return to the enclave, young one,” he said. “You were gripped in the Dark Side, for a few moments. We felt your anger and fear as our own.”

    “I-” Xova closed her mouth. She couldn't figure out what to say that would make any sense. “Yes, Master,” she said instead. As she surveyed the carnage and Sith troopers came forward, arms raised in surrender, she added with a shrug, “Something was bound to go right sometime today.”
     
  14. UltramassiveUbersue

    UltramassiveUbersue Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Nov 7, 2022
    =D=

    I like to see these critiques of human exceptionalism in the GFFA.

    Oh, snap! I like how you've built up the tension as Vizif and Xova piece together what is happening.

    [face_laugh] I like Talis' antics. I particularly enjoy that you're showing how different Jedi approach problems in their own way; it's not easy to create any kind of relationship tension amongst people who are largely celibate, eschew ownership, and seek a state of peace and mindfulness.

    Great action sequence!

    Poor Xova, to be confronted with these intrusive Force visions when she needs to keep her wits about her. I like how you've blended these quasi-dream state with her perception of what is actually happening around her.
    On another note, would Sinister Phalli make a good name for a Tool cover band? I think so. :D

    Yep, it would be hard to put that experience into words on the spot.

    Well done! I look forward to what you write next, whenever RL allows. :)
     
  15. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    I love the action and the comments of your new OC
     
  16. Findswoman

    Findswoman Fanfic and Pancakes and Waffles Mod (in Pink) star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Oh no, what a scary moment for Xova! What is it she’s seeing for that terrible moment? Some kind of terrible trauma from her past? Thank goodness the other Jedi reinforcements arrive as expeditiously as they do—and yay for Vandar! I always liked him.I hope Xova will be able to find some feeling after this, but she is in good hands with Vizif—and even Vek, in a way. Thanks so much for sharing, and keep it coming! :)
     
  17. Chyntuck

    Chyntuck Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 11, 2014
    Another amazing little story from this era, and you did a wonderful job at fleshing out this new OC through the references to her Zabrak identity and her handling of the Force.
    I want to know more about Vek Talis since I started reading this thread. He comes across as a really unorthodox Jedi, and Xova's scorn for him sounds a bit arrogant and misplaced. But "my bad" was such a funny comment in the middle of this scene that I found it really endearing.
    Now all this was very, very intriguing, and I'm very curious if we'll run into her again, either in this thread or in other stories about this group of Jedi, because my curiosity was majorly piqued!
     
  18. Vek Talis

    Vek Talis Mods' Dare Challenge 1st Place Winner star 3 VIP - Game Winner

    Registered:
    Oct 12, 2018
    I doubt that not. :p


    Thanks, I excel at conflict, apparently. :p


    Lmao - yes, I think you are correct there. Thanks for reading/enjoying!



    Thank you, earlybird. :) More of them to come. :D


    You probably wouldn't want to know what that memory means to Xova. You might learn whether you like or not... :p "she is in good hands with Vizif—and even Vek, in a way." Erm, thanks, I think? :p Thanks for reading, Master. :)


    Thanks. :)

    I appreciate the feedback. :) I may have a couple of Vizif & Vek stories I'd posted back in 2018 around here somewhere. ;)

    Well... since you asked... ;)


    Title: Excitement
    Author: Vek Talis
    Length: Vignette
    Timeframe: 171 years before KotOR 4127 BBY approx.
    Genre: Drama-action
    Characters: OCs Vek Talis, Vizif, Xova
    Disclaimer: I don't own Star Wars and never will.
    Note: This is for the Kessel Run Challenge. May the Force have mercy on my essence. Word count = 973

    Write a story between 100 and 1,000 words that is predominantly action. You can have as many characters interacting as you want, and you can include introspection as long as it doesn't outweigh the action.
    Word limit = 100-1,000 words


    ~ * ~ * ~ * ~

    A blasterbolt zinged by, close enough so Vek felt a flash of heat. His blade hummed, a little too late, in that direction. “Seems as though the Sith don't take kindly to the answer, 'no',” he said.

    Beside him, he sensed his companion roll her eyes. “Concentrate on the objective, not the chatter, Knight Talis,” she said tightly.

    “Tough audience,” Vek said.

    Just before it happened, the Unifying Force tugged at his robe and he moved, ever so slightly. A violet blade shot forth from an open doorway. A quarren in black robes lunged forward, swinging his blade in the Makashi form.

    Vek and Xova tried to get on either side of the Sith. Lightning quick, he evaded, sliced into Vek's arm and kept both Jedi in front of him. “He's good,” Vek said.

    “Looking to switch sides?” Xova asked. Vek couldn't tell if she was serious; he knew she didn't like him very much. “I'll be happy to slay both of you,” the zabrak padawan added.

    Stellar, Vek thought, then danced away from another strike by the quarren... Knight, Vek judged by his level of skill. A series of blasterbolts whizzed toward them in the next instant. Vek used the Force to zip past Xova, bat away the bolts. He raised his saber above his head, then down to protect his shoulders as the Sith's violet blade looked to strike. The quarren howled, and kicked him in the small of the back, sending him surging forward.

    “Why don't I take out those troopers,” Vek said helpfully. A squad of them stood at the end of the hallway. After the orbital defense station on Telos was back under friendly control, the Jedi learned that it was just a feint. The real effort was centered on Thani, the capital. Vandar and the other masters were handling the 'real' threat, while Vizif, Vek and Xova were sent to create their own distraction.

    Under normal circumstances, Vek wouldn't have left Xova alone with a Sith Knight, even though the eighteen year old was already better with a blade than he was. However, he felt the presence of his former master. ==He uses Makashi, Master== Vek said to Vizif through their never vanished bond.

    Several of the Sith troopers reached for melee weapons at their hips while the rest kept blasting at Vek, and Xova in the distance. One, perhaps their sergeant, stepped forward. The small object in his hand expanding into a portable vibroblade. He twisted his wrist with skill, rather than putting his shoulder into it, clashing with Vek's blade several times.

    Doors opened behind the Sith. Vizif had successfully opened them, then. Vek sliced through one of the Sith, batted a few bolts back at their origins, and felt the Sith Knight gather the Force to himself. Lightning crackled and he unleashed a blast of lightning at Xova. Vek briefly let his guard down to check on the padawan – she correctly brought her saber up to absorb the lightning – and that pesky Sith sergeant swept low, taking Vek's feet out from under him.

    With momentum from the Force, Vek went with the direction, doing a full somersault. The Sith's eyes went wide, just before Vek's blade sliced his head off. The other Sith retreated through the open doors and Vek returned his attention to Xova.

    The padawan had been backed into a corner, but a wry smile spread across her face. “I know something you don't know, Sith,” Xova said casually as Vek watched the interaction. “I have powerful friends,” the padawan added, right before Vizif's crystalline blade hummed into action. Now, the Sith was on the defensive, master and padawan backing him away.

    “Looks like it's all over but the screaming,” Vek said. The Unifying Force, however, showed him a flash of crimson.

    “Then start screaming.” The sweet, undulating voice chilled the back of Vek's neck. He whirled, in time to block a strike that would have decapitated him.

    “Touchy,” Vek said as he clashed sabers with the female human. She used Ataru well. She flipped and dodged, using the Force as a weapon against him, along with her blade. But she had a rhythm, a tell. “I hate to do this to a lady,” Vek said and the Sith roared with fury. “Be that as it may...” Vek added, right before he surged forward with his shoulder. His timing was, for a change, excellent. His shoulder caught her squarely in the chest as she was about to flip.

    Instead, she flew back three meters, her blade slipping from her gloved hand. Vizif and Xova rushed up just as the Sith called her blade back to her. She snarled something fierce and leaped into an open ventilation hatch.

    Robes fluttering behind her, the zabrak rushed toward the hatch. “Let her go, Xova,” Vizif cautioned. “Those shafts lead in a hundred directions. We have made our distraction, as required.”

    When Xova turned, darkness clouded her face, just for a moment. The Force swirled around her as she calmed the anger quickly. “Inefficiency as you say, Master,” she said.

    “What happened to...” Vek asked.

    “That squidface is sashimi now,” Xova answered gruffly as she stomped up to her master.

    “Stellar,” Vek said.

    Vizif giggled, waved a finger at her first padawan. “Why don't you go and see if the masters were successful in their mission?”

    Vek bowed, first to Vizif, then to Xova. “Of course,” he answered, glad to be breathing once more. That Sith master would probably have gutted him if she hadn't relied so heavily on the Force. The more you used, often enough in his experienced, the more of a rhythm you'd get into. If your opponent could anticipate that rhythm... your opponent would survive. Telos would survive for another day.
     
    Kahara, DLR001, amidalachick and 5 others like this.
  19. Findswoman

    Findswoman Fanfic and Pancakes and Waffles Mod (in Pink) star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Ooh, very exciting! These three make a good team, and distractions are indeed one of their strengths! It’s neat to see Vek as a semi-experienced, semi-authority figure now that Xova, with all her youthful enthusiasm (and sometimes impatience), on the team. Glad you brought her back—keep up the fab work! =D=
     
  20. UltramassiveUbersue

    UltramassiveUbersue Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Nov 7, 2022
    Great update! :)

    It sure takes a lot for Vek to stop with the wisecracks, doesn't it? :p

    I like that you name the style of combat that they're using, and that despite the obvious hostility, there's a bit of acknowledgement and respect of each other's skill, which I think would absolutely be a thing between people who practise ancient martial arts.

    I like how you're delivering exposition here. First you have dialogue, then a visual of what the protagonist is seeing, then the exposition. It makes the information feel relevant and engaging and keeps the pace quick. Neat! :)

    *hides eyes* Great job, made me cringe! lol
     
  21. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Like the fight with Vek and Xova against the Sith on one of the beautiful planets of KotOR
     
  22. amidalachick

    amidalachick Chosen One star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 3, 2003
    Slowly catching up on my reading! Weeks 3 & 4 were both action-packed, great reads.

    I really liked this bit, and it's true.

    LOL'd for real at the "circus" line! I always love some good banter. :D

    Oh wow, that's some really powerful and yes, sinister, imagery.

    And I love the use of the prompt sentence as the final line; it's a great ending!

    I could quote this whole fic, it's awesome action writing!

    &
    I really liked these lines about the Force rhythm, how it becomes a weakness that Vek uses against her. Really cool idea!

    Looking forward to more! :)=D=
     
  23. Chyntuck

    Chyntuck Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 11, 2014
    So I went and read Vek's origin stories (and I'll be reviewing those in the coming days as well) and I understand a lot more about him now, including his use of the word "stellar" :p I love how Xova basically doesn't get his sarcasm (the “I hate to do this to a lady” line in particular had me laughing out loud) but she doesn't realise that she has her own brand of sarcasm that isn't all that different in the end (“That squidface is sashimi now” [face_laugh] ) However:
    What's the deal with her?????

    I loved the action writing too, especially the way you inserted small details like the Sith sergean using his wrist rather than his shoulder, and of course the Sith master settling into a rhythm because she relied too much on the Force. It reminded me of Vek's comment when he first learns to use a lightsaber that anticipating the training droids' moves is more about mathematical deduction than using the Force. He's really using all the tools at his disposal in a fight, up to and including old-fashioned brawling!
     
  24. Vek Talis

    Vek Talis Mods' Dare Challenge 1st Place Winner star 3 VIP - Game Winner

    Registered:
    Oct 12, 2018
    Thank you, Master. I think they will be around quite a lot in this challenge. :) You might just find out a little bit more about the newest addition... very soon. :D


    You have no idea. :rolleyes:


    Thanks, I strive for realism. :)


    Thanks for the praise and concrit. I enjoy both. :p


    Oh, my friend, KotOR is still one of my favorite games. The sequel is pretty good, too. I wish they would have made more, instead of making an updated version of the first. Thanks for reading and enjoying my characters. :)


    Thanks. I try to have some of the snarkiest banter available twenty-four, seven. :D


    More may be yet to come.[face_thinking]


    Thank you very much! It's always good to have feedback.


    Thanks again. Though I've never been in a 'real' fight, I like to daydream a lot. :p



    Firstly, thank you for reading that old bit of fluff. :p And yes, Vek and I share a few things in common, you might say. ;) I enjoy being the Great White Snark, what can I say?

    As for Xova, stay tuned, you will probably learn something... very soon. ;)

    Have you seen him with a lightsaber... he needs all the tools and tricks he can get. :rolleyes: Lots of flaws, that one. :p You just have to be right once, and all the wrongs can slip away. :p Thanks again for reading and enjoying. And thanks for all the great feedback!

    Thanks to anyone who read. And thanks to anyone who enjoyed.

    EDIT: So yeah, I was informed that my old, tired brain farted again and that I did actual drabbles, not double drabbles. So I'll take down the post and go with the replies until I can fix the issue. Sorry for the confusion.

    Double EDIT: All right, double drabblers, it's fixed:

    Title: Legacy
    Author: Vek Talis
    Length: Drabbly-ish
    Timeframe: 171 years before KotOR 4127 BBY approx.
    Genre: Drabbles
    Characters: OCs Vek Talis, Vizif, Xova
    Disclaimer: I don't own Star Wars and never will.
    Note: This is for the Kessel Run Challenge. May the Force have mercy on my essence. Word count =
    • Write a set of 3 double drabbles with the following prompts: juggernaut, shepherd, undertaker
    • Hey, technically they're not drabbles.
    • What is a double drabble anyway? Well, since a drabble is a short work of fiction that is precisely 100 words long, no more and no less, then doubling our drabbles brings us to 200 words each.
    • Each double drabble must be exactly 200 words, for a total of 600 words

    ~ * ~ * ~ * ~

    Juggernaut

    “Today, my Padawan, I have a special treat,” Vizif said. She smiled profusely. Something was going to go wrong.

    “As you say,” Xova replied, resigned to her master’s peculiar specialties. “Is it swoop track betting or watching the bantha races today, Master?”

    “Your sparring partner today is my first padawan.” Her master enjoyed torturing padawans, then.

    Before she even knew what happened, Vek nearly blindsided her, his training blade scoring the first hit. He was relentless. Even when Xova scored a hit, he fought back, often more ferociously.

    Training blades were meant to make one pause in shock, rather than harm. “I feel nothing, Padawan,” Vek said. Xova found that hard to believe. He must have felt the fool, often enough.

    He backed her into a corner, more than once. It was frustrating that this… buffoon could rattle her so much.

    “You’re getting weary, Padawan,” Vek taunted as he efficiently blocked another strike, parried and scored another hit.

    “And you’re aging… not well, Knight Talis,” Xova replied.

    When it was over, he’d scored seventy-five times. She had managed a mere twelve. “That was respectable, Padawan. Better than former padawans, for sure,” Vizif said.

    “That was… fun,” Xova said sweating profusely.


    ~ * ~ * ~ * ~

    Shepherd

    “Lead these civilians to safety, Xova,” Vizif commanded. Flames licked the sides of primitive huts, sentient beings cowered and cringed. Blaster cannon erupted in deafening succession.

    The Sith were on the move in the galaxy. It was regrettable, but impressive at the same time. The Republic waited, watched events instead of responding. They were weak.

    “But, Master,” Xova said petulantly. Sith troopers loped forward, under fire but gaining ground against the native defenders. She could smell the acrid air and feasted on its fear. Combat was the sphere of the zabrak, and she wanted it.

    “Go!” Vizif ordered. She and the others surged forward.

    A lone apprentice, cloaked in black. “Lost your way?” Xova asked, eager. Her blue blade thrummed. The hilt sang in her hands as she twisted and jockeyed for position. Red, blue, scorching energy seared and popped, one blade off the other.

    For all her hard work, the Sith apprentice nearly skewered her. Hard work often made up for a lack of skill. Vizif had taught her that, again and again. He’d nearly bested her with his skill, but hard work won.

    “I earned it,” Xova said as she extinguished her blade in triumph. They were safe.


    ~ * ~ * ~ * ~

    Undertaker

    It was a civilian ceremony, shrouded from the citizens of Serenno. “Are you sure about this, Padawan?” Vizif couldn’t help but worry. That was what made her such a fine master. Her attention to detail, her concern, compassion and empathy. The other masters should have been so considerate.

    “It will be fine.” Xova ground the words down like meal. The tension snuck around her, as if the Force feared her rising ire. And at the same time, the anger seemed to… fit. It warmed and comforted her. Some Jedi could stay perfectly comfortable in the Light, with anger as their constant companion.

    Since this was no time for a joke, Vek refrained. It took all his will. He was here for support and nothing more.

    Xova strode forward. Everything was silent. People in dark cloaks, black suits, dresses, combat uniforms, stood around the casket. As they turned, gasps filled the stale air. No one had expected this. No one expected her.

    “I was a little girl,” Xova said, words catching. She turned to her dead uncle and spat in the coffin. “You bastard; I hope the Force turns your soul to meal worms.” She turned on her heel, stalked away.
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2023
  25. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    A great set with Xova. Battling Vek. Guiding civilians to safety. At the funeral of a not loved uncle