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Old 12-08-2006, 02:13 PM   #125
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Another Chappie for you folks. This one I thought would be a nice touch seeing as that it involves fuzzies though in deception. Anyway here it is.

Chapter 29
Revan jumped up and nearly knocked over the table that held the tea and cakes. If it hadn’t been for Mamesa’s sure hand, everything would have been overturned. Well versed in matters of etiquette, Revan begged apology and excused herself to the entryway to gaze out the window. Carth was going to follow her but something in Mamesa’s gaze told him that it wasn’t a good idea. He looked at the slender woman with rich dark hair arranged in a deceptively simple hairstyle and dark glittering eyes. Though she was a little pale, she conveyed the impression that her will was law, at least in her geisha house and the hamachi. Her stare made him want to squirm but he was reassured when her gentle voice broke in, “I know what she is feeling. Don’t worry. One of my younglings will attend to her.”

“A child?” Carth was dubious about it. He had been around Avalonians enough to know that wisdom can come from the strangest of places, even a young child. One look at Mamesa told him that she wasn’t kidding but he had to know.

“You of all people should know that help comes from all places,” Mamesa replied gently with a slight smile. She gracefully picked up the teapot and poured some more tea. When she was finished, she slid the cup towards Carth. With her hand, she motioned him to drink it.

Carth picked up the cup. It looked ridiculously small as the bottom rested on his palm and he held the side with his other hand. “You know who I am?” he asked.

“Of course. He told me that you were a good friend.” Mamesa took a sip from her cup.

Carth looked at her sitting on her heels, wondering how she could stand to sit that way for so long. He was unsure how to react at the news that Mamesa knew who he was and who Kirabaros was. He asked, “You know Kirabaros?”

Though her face didn’t show it, her voice held a sad note, “Yes. He helped me become who I am today. Tis a sad thing that his good name has to be tarnished.”

“I remember you now. You are that geima that performed at the festival months ago. Why are you here on Tatooine?” Carth changed the subject.

“We perform and we move. That is how we survive,” Mamesa replied. She took another sip of her tea and paused to breathe in the aroma the brewed leaves brought to her nose. She then asked, “Tell me, what brings you here? I doubt that it is the nostalgia of seeing a planet of sand again.”

Carth was silent. He turned his head to gaze at one of the sliding doors. It had a painting attached to it. It was an image of a green field with a river running through it. There were two birds and a phrase on it. Since it was in Avalonian, he couldn’t read it but he guessed that it had to do with the countryside. Just looking at it calmed him as he reverted his gaze to Mamesa and began, “Well…”

Revan was pacing in the entryway, avoiding the row of shoes and boots. She felt the pain. It sent tingles of energy through her blood and overloaded her nerves. What was worse was the screaming that accompanied it. She had heard the scream as if she had been there. What was worse was that she thought it was Carth. At that thought she felt shame because she thought about Carth instead of Kirabaros. After all he was the one who was suffering on her behalf. He suffered for her so that she may be able to enjoy her life. He never asked for a reward and yet she never gave it. She took him for granted at times and that only compounded to her shame.

She had stopped pacing and was looking out the window. The cloth used to protect the windows was thin enough to see through but all she could see was sand. The swirling winds were like her mind, twirling in a whirlwind, never blowing in a coherent direction. She failed to notice the tall boy that she had met earlier had come in and had seated himself on the platform that led to the main parlor. Instead, tears began to fall down her cheeks as she thought that this whole mess was her fault. She felt that she would never truly be able to atone for all that she had done. She let the tears fall in silence until a voice broke in, “Tears of sorrow feed another’s pleasure.”

Revan turned to find Shang-Li looking at her with a look of concern. His green eyes locked onto hers as his locks fell slightly into his eyes. He looked small just sitting there with his knees clutched to his chest in an outfit similar to what Mamesa wore when she saw her at the festival. His statement sounded familiar and she asked, “What did you say?”

“Tears of sorrow feed another’s pleasure. Sorrow can be another person’s pleasure,” Tulre shrugged his shoulders, “It’s a gentle way of saying that sorrow is a weakness. What are you thinking about?”

Revan gazed at the boy as she kneeled in front of him. She detected concern but nothing else. He wasn’t giving away anything else which made her wonder. She brushed this aside as she replied, “Something that I lost.”

“And you are close to that something?”

“Very. He’s a good friend of mine, like a brother,” Revan replied with a downward look, “An overly protective brother.”

With a sly grin that she didn’t see Tulre replied, “Like your husband?”

“How did…?” Revan looked at him surprised.

“You held hands when we came to the hamachi. There is also a tan line where your wedding ring used to be. His too.” Tulre added that last bit as a means of observation. He didn’t like lying to his Aunt Reva but Mamesa said that they had to remain a secret. He hid the guilty feeling of deception well as he watched his aunt’s reactions.

Revan thought that was astute for an observation. She liked the boy for he reminded her of Tulre. She wondered where he was now as she decided to indulge a bit, “You are clever like the person I lost. Would you like to hear it?”

Tulre nodded. It was the only way he could find out about his Dada. Marmar was more likely with Uncle Atton and Jedi Rowan so that wasn’t a biggie. He brushed his locks back and sighed as the stubborn ones popped back into place. He rested his head on his knees as Revan began to talk.

When she was told that her mother and papa were there, she wanted to run out and hug them both. She knew however that she had to keep up her pretense of being an Avalonian girl studying to be a geisha. Technically she was Avalonian since she was born there so she did have a legitimate geisha name, Serena. A strange thing to her but Mamesa said that it carried serenity wherever she would go for that was what she was. It would take her years to understand but for now she was content with the current explanation.

Here she was outside the door, peering through the crack to gaze at her father talking to Mamesa. Kimiko was behind her watching as well since they never got interesting visitors if it was important. If Tante caught them, they could be punished since they weren’t supposed to be doing this. She suppressed the urge to race in there and climb into her papa’s lap especially when he heard that her favorite uncle was in trouble. It reminded her of that dream that she had with Tulre and Morgan.

Almost as if she had spoken, Morgan appeared and asked to watch. So now there were three of them listening to the conversation until Kimiko had to go and bring in the cakes when Mamesa called through the door. At least Morgan could be happy that his papa was all right and was looking for him. Both were content to just be near those that were dear and familiar.

Mamesa had finished her tea and the pot was nearly empty. She was saddened that Kirabaros had been captured but she was confident that he would find a way out. She didn’t show this as Carth finished his commentary on the events that happened. Following protocol, she called in Avalonian for Kimiko to bring a tray of cakes. She then poured Carth some more tea and asked, “How do you intend to raise the necessary funds for the parts?”

“Lilah,” Carth used the identity the council gave Revan, “wanted to race in the swoop races. The problem is that we…don’t have a swoop bike.” He said that last bit in a dejected tone. He hadn’t wanted to gain Mamesa’s pity since geisha didn’t do things like that.

Mamesa regarded the Republic admiral before her and shrewdly guessed that he didn’t like to show weakness in front of anybody. Since the teapot was empty and Kimiko hadn’t come back, she called to Lilah to come. She hoped that maybe the father would recognize his daughter since he showed a slight sign of recognizing the boys. When Lilah came in and reached for the pot, Mamesa said, “There is one other option. Unfortunately it could reveal who Lilah truly is but it is something within everyone’s capabilities.”

Carth saw his daughter shuffle in quietly and lift the teapot to get more tea. He wanted nothing more than to pick her up and hug her but he held back. He knew the reason why she was there under Mamesa’s care and he wouldn’t do anything to jeopardize her safety. Instead he kept to the conversation and asked, “What are you proposing?”

Mamesa had seen the look that Carth gave when Lilah entered and was pleased with his reactions. Sometimes Republics tended to be too brash at times. The admiral in front of her seemed to have adopted the Avalonian reserve. She smiled slightly as she replied, “It involves a little bit of combat.”

“So he gave of himself so you could escape?” Tulre asked.

“Yes. Much like Bastila did eight years ago,” Revan replied. “That’s why I feel so bad.”

“He did what he did because you were important to him,” Tulre replied thoughtfully. “Love is a precious thing. It is always there no matter what.”

“What?” Revan asked, surprised for the second time since talking to him.

“Nothing. Just something that came to mind,” Tulre uttered the lie effortlessly. He knew that his Dada said that to anyone who cared to listen. He changed the subject, “So you are here now. What are you gonna do?”

“Well we need to acquire the parts necessary to fix our ship but Republic credits aren’t worth the price of Bantha fodder,” Revan answered. She was suspicious about that last comment and thought that the boy was trying to hide something. Her inquisitive nature urged her find out more about the boy but she curbed it in. Being too inquisitive got you nowhere with Avalonians unless you knew them well, in the family like way. They either considered and insult or led you in a roundabout way with their double talk until you got frustrated and left. She asked, “You know anything about swoop racing?”

“Fast and fun,” Tulre answered, “but okâsan says it’s not proper for a maiko.”


“Yeah but if you are looking to race, you’re not going to have any luck. There aren’t any for another month or so. There is the Shaak Ti coming up.”

Revan was going to ask what that was but was interrupted when Carth and Mamesa came. Tulre got quiet and bowed at Mamesa and disappeared quietly. Carth said to her, “We may have found a way.”

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