Join Date: Sep 2006
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[Fic] The Lost of the Jedi (the long version)
Well, Pottsie, it isn't exactly a sequel, but here you go.
I'll try to think of a better name someday, but for now...
A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away...
The Lost of the Jedi
The sun shone brightly over the small world of Ranon. It cast its brilliant rays about the capital city, bathing the open streets with blinding light, and casting the shadows into a profound darkness.
The royal palace was no exception, its angular construction causing the light and the darkness to contrast even more.
King Derdrom’Mrak leaned forward in his throne as the communications device set into the table chimed insistently, notifying him that someone had called. The king looked around to see that no one was nearby, then cleared his throat nervously. He had been waiting for this communication for some time.
The sun had always shone brightly over Ranon. But never, thought King Derdrom’Mrak, had it shone more brightly than it did that day.
Jedi Knight Nartris Venn turned his lightsaber left and right in broad slashes of green light. He patted the curly head of the young boy that clung to him.
“It’s alright,” he said soothingly. “Just keep your eyes closed a little longer. We’re almost there.” The child mumbled something in assent.
Nartris stepped over the armored bodies of his previous antagonists and continued down the rocky tunnel, listening intently for any warnings of trouble. The clatter of chitinous feet sounded a little ahead. Nartris could not see much in the darkness of the tunnel, even with the glow from his lightsaber illuminating the walls, but he could feel them coming – dozens of them.
He had been distracted from his diplomatic mission by the young child’s call for help, and they had been wandering the tunnels ever since, trying to avoid the spiny, meter-long arachnids that lived there. Nartris had no wish to fight the creatures, far from it. He merely wanted to get out of the tunnels with the child before he started suffering permanent claustrophobia. Regrettably, the tunnels were better than any maze he had ever seen, and he had never possessed a very good sense of direction.
Since he had nowhere else to go, Nartris continued steadily towards the creatures. He reached out to them with the Force, trying to convince them of his peaceful intentions. Unfortunately, the creatures had very simple minds, dominated by only one command, Eat!
Nartris wished he didn’t look so tasty.
The arachnids scuttled closer. Nartris paused just before reaching another side tunnel and was bracing himself for another battle when an idea lit up his mind like a glowlamp. He drew on the Force, concentrating on the creatures, capturing the essence of what they wanted, and then projected that essence, dangling it before them like a lure.
He waited as they came closer and closer, and hoped his brilliant idea would work. Well, he thought, if I fail this time, it’ll be a fiasco just spectacular enough to join the ranks of my other catastrophic plans.
He concentrated. The arachnids followed his lead, scuttling deep into the side tunnel after the elusive temptation. Nartris released his hold on the creatures, deactivated his lightsaber, and piled rocks to cover the tunnel entrance.
It worked, he thought. I just hope that isn’t the way out.
He continued on his journey until he finally discovered a way to the surface and emerged into the sunlight, cradling the now-sleeping child in his arms. He walked for a distance from the burrow before the boy woke up.
“Are they gone?” he asked worriedly, blinking his eyes.
“Of course,” Nartris reassured him. “Now…” he began, contemplating the unfamiliar terrain around him,
“…Do you have any idea where we are?”
Nartris continued to the capital city of Ranon with no further untoward occurrences. When he reached the royal palace, he was escorted into a room and told to wait. He paced around the room several times before someone entered.
The man was tall, with clear-cut features and an ingenuous smile that advertised his sincerity. But his eyes spoke otherwise. They were crafty and scheming, and they did not smile with the rest of his face. Nartris remembered having seen him somewhere before.
“Greetings, Jedi Knight,” said the man, sweeping back his elaborate robes as he bowed. Nartris bowed slightly in return. “I am Senator Derdrom’Mrak, also King of Ranon.” He smiled again. “But most people call me Senator Mark. They find it difficult to pronounce my name. Even I do sometimes.”
So that’s where I’ve seen him, thought Nartris. One of those boring political holos. No wonder I didn’t remember.
“It is an honor to meet you, Senator,” he said. “I am Nartris Venn. My superiors informed me that you wished for Jedi help with – a ‘diplomatic negotiation,’ I believe it was.”
“Oh yes,” Senator Mark replied, his plastic smile melting into a faraway expression. “But not just any diplomatic negotiation.” His voice faded and he stared into the distance.
Seems rather preoccupied, Nartris thought. He remained silent until the other man blinked and looked around the room.
“Oh yes,” Senator Mark said. “Where was I?”
“You were just going to tell me what I’m doing here,” Nartris reminded him dryly.
“That’s right, that’s right. As I was saying, this is not just any diplomatic negotiation.” Nartris nodded gravely.
“I see. Pray continue.”
“Ranon is about to enter an important alliance with the Niora system. We have held a peaceful trade agreement for some time, and I believe that with my marriage to the Nioran princess, our alliance will become permanent. Perhaps we can even convince them to join our great Republic.”
Nartris hated politics.
“So what part am I to play in this grand scheme?”
“You are to escort the princess to Ranon, of course.” His voice drifted off again. “No precaution is too great if it ensures our success.”
“Was there no one else who could go? Maybe someone who was a little closer than Coruscant?” Nartris asked, sarcasm coloring his words despite his best efforts to the contrary. Senator Mark snapped from his reverie.
“Oh no,” he said. “The Erehwon system would do anything to stop me from achieving this alliance. Although I hate to think ill of another being—” Nartris rolled his eyes slightly “—they may even resort to kidnapping my fiancée. And we do have to be prepared for all eventualities. The Jedi are the only ones I can trust to carry out such a job.”
Nartris knew he should have felt honored. Instead, he was vaguely annoyed.
Nartris hated politics.
The moon shone brightly over the small world of Niora. It spread its gentle glow throughout the capital city, filling the open areas with an ambient light, and covering the waves of the lake with a thousand scintillations.
The royal palace rode high from the edge of the water, the gentle curves of its architecture reflecting the light off its polished exterior.
Princess Ysoult Niora leaned on a balcony and looked out over the lake, her white gown rippling behind her. Running her fingers through her brown hair, she undid its rigid styling and let the night breeze toss the shimmersilk waves as it did the water. She stared up into the face of the moon and wondered what her new life would be like.
In only a few days, she would marry a man she had never met, to forge an alliance between two great nations. She smiled in anticipation and dread. Whatever the future held for her, she hoped she would be prepared to face it, as the Princess of Niora or the Queen of Ranon. Whatever happened, she would always do her best for her world.
But right now, she thought, all I want to do is go for a good swim.
She leaped from the balcony regardless of her stately attire, and plunged into the lake. Surfacing, she shook the water from her hair and laughed.
The moon had always shone brightly over Niora. But never, thought Princess Ysoult, had it shone more brightly than it did that night.
There's a bit of the shadowy side in all of us.
Except those freakazoid Jedi nutcases.