Between the Conclaves – 6. Kessel, Part 2

6. Kessel

Part 2

No way! The Empire knew? Then, did Ghost… No, there’s no way any of the guys in Alpha Squad would betray us. It, just can’t be… Calm down. They probably don’t know anything of the meeting. Vhiran took a deep breath before opening the channel. But, what’s going on then? Just what is an Imperial capital ship doing here?

“Unidentified fighter. Identify yourself and state your business on the double,” the ship’s communications officer ordered. The man’s voice sounded young, inexperienced even. It probably hadn’t been that long since he had graduated from the military academy.

With a bit of help from the Force, this might just work. Here goes. “I am Inspector Darius Vakluu of Imperial Security Operations,” Vhiran said, remembering a Republic security officer he had once encountered on Coruscant, before leaving for his mission to Aargau. “I am under order of Colonel Vak Somoril to inspect the Empire’s spice mines for suspicious activity said to take place there. I demand you let me to the surface immediately!” Vhiran tried to sound as authoritative as he could without overdoing it, strengthening the sound of his voice and emphasizing the strict tone with the Force. He could hear the officer on the other side of the channel gulp. Was it working?

“I, I am terribly sorry, Inspector,” the officer started nervously. “But as of this morning, Coruscant standard time, Lord Vader has declared the planet Kessel completely off-limits to all who have not received permission from him personally. I’m, I’m afraid I cannot let you pass.”

Vader! Just what we needed. Vhiran narrowed his eyes. I’ll have to get to the others as soon as possible then. “You have not been in the navy for very long, have you, boy?!” he bit back at the young officer. “Perhaps you have not heard what I said. I am here under order of Colonel Vak Somoril of the Imperial Security Bureau to …”

“We have not received a message on any such order, mister Vakluu.” This voice was different! A senior officer seemed to have taken over communications. “Also, I find it quite, intriguing to find Inspector Darius Vakluu here in the flesh, while apparently he has been dead for over a month now,” his silky but cold voice sounded. “You may have tricked this brat here, but you cannot fool me. This ends here!”

Shamila’s eyes widened as the Venator’s hatch opened. She quickly looked at Vhiran. “Mas…” But her Master only sat there, motionless, with an empty look in his eyes. The girl gulped. She sat as if paralyzed, only able stare at him.

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Daily Writing Part 142. Story of Poems Part 76

Random word of the day: Tragedy. Aluminium

Apologies for the week and a day late installment. I don’t have any real excuses for it other than that life has been taking an unexpected but interesting turn lately, so I won’t try to make up any and waste everyone’s time with this any longer than necessary.

It appears chapter four still hasn’t ended this week, but I definitely feel like we’re nearing its conclusion. One, maybe two more stanzas and we’ll be there! I know, I’ve said it before, but this time I really think it’s going to happen soon! … Yes, I have said that before as well, but… Look, let’s see what our colourful band of characters has in store, shall we? ^_^; Onward, to the story!

The Artist’s Tale. Chapter 4
Meanwhile near the chapel’s entrance
Lied the pieces of its gate
A charred trail shaped just like a runway
Ran for many meters straight

At the trail’s end rose a tall spiked ridge
Where the giant gull was seated
Below, among the capsicums
Lied its enemies, defeated

Like the needle of a compass
The bird’s head then turned North
Where, near a cabin, from a bush
Five creatures scuttled forth

There appeared without a sign
Four scorpions, fleet of foot
And a fifth on massive wheels
Emitting dark black soot

No time to spare!” one of them called
And warily looked ’round
Then placed the bin within its claws
Before it on the ground

Energy flowed as it opened
Straight up to the sky
As on instinct, then, the artist
Held their toothbrush high

Down then came the energy
And with the brush collided
Then visions of a lawn appeared
Where prejudice had subsided

No labels used for anyone
No judgment did befall
‘t Was filled with peace up to the brim
And iPods, free, for all

Just as it came the vision went
As a telephone went ringing
The artist recognized the tone
Guitars, quite loud but swinging

With a slight bit of embarrassment
They picked their phone up fast
A sparkling voice replied at once
“Just parking! Please hold fast!”

A butterfly came flying in
Just as the call had ended
A pattern like a compass shaped
Showed on its wings so splendid

I take the picnic hasn’t ended”
Spoke the butterfly
“The referendum can’t begin”
“Before we had some pie!”

In any case, I’m glad you came”
“Especially you, old gull”
“How have you been, my feathered friend?”
“Still as wealthy as you’re dull?”

Before the gull could answer
The butterfly set down
On a bed of manlike flowers
Playing music with a frown

We’ll be needing every bit of help”
The giant gull then spoke
“Do you still have that submarine?”
“The one you nearly broke?”

The Elephant! Good thinking, friend!”
“Don’t worry, she still sails”
“Although right now she’s stuck in court”
“Once out, she’ll tip the scales”

They barely finished speaking
When a swarm of moths appeared

The court has been attacked!” they called
By the Pirates of the Beard!”

Then we must hurry there at once!”
The butterfly replied
“For this can only mean one thing”
“Good captain Verb has died!”

The scorpions picked up their box
The seagull spread its wings
The toys took out a pillow case
To gather all their things

Climb on my back,” the seagull said
The artist followed suit

And wear this aluminium hat”
Lest tragedy’s afoot!


For the first chapter of The Artist’s Tale click here.

For the second chapter of The Artist’s Tale click here.

For the third chapter of The Artist’s Tale click here.

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Daily Writing Part 141

Random word of the day: Definition

It’s been a while since I’ve done a limerick. For this one I’ve decided to put in a bit of a silly movie reference (and a lot of obvious ‘artistic license’), to a movie I (to my shame) haven’t actually seen yet. ^^; Like most dwelling the internet, however, I’m at least somewhat familiar with some of the characters, scenes and quotes and this seemed like a fun idea. Also, yes, I know that’s not the exact way the quote goes. Hey, you try fitting the actual one in and have things flow properly! ^_~

Can You Believe That?!
A grumpy Sicilian from Queens
Hurled the strangest of insults at teens
A Spaniard walked by
And scoffed in reply

I don’t think you know what that means”

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Between the Conclaves – 6. Kessel, Part 1

6. Kessel

Part 1

Leaning against the ship’s window with her head, Shamila watched the hyperspace lines speed by outside. Her heart was pounding. Finally the meeting on Kessel would take place. Finally they would find others who had survived the beginning of the Great Jedi Purge. After all the trouble they went through since the attack on the caves on Zaloriis, things would finally start taking a turn for the better. She took Nillanthir’s silver feather in her hands and felt herself turn warm inside as she looked at it. I wonder… “Master?”

Kindly Vhiran looked down at his Padawan in the seat next to him. “Yes?”

“Ehm… Do you…,” she continued hesitantly, turning slightly red. “Do you think Master Nill will be there too?”

“Perhaps.” Her Master looked up. “His cave in the middle of the Zalorian desert is not exactly the easiest of places to get in contact with, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he somehow found out about the meeting and is waiting for us right now.” With a smirk he looked back. “One way to find out, hmm?”

Shamila nodded happily. How wonderful that would be, if he were there too… She leaned back in her seat and continued to look outside. Finally.

Better strap yourself in, Shamila. I’m getting us out of hyperspace. We’re almost there.” His fingers ran over the computer panel as Shamila nodded and followed her Master’s advice. Vhiran smiled, seeing the lines around the ship disappear and their destination appear below them. Even from orbit, the planet Kessel, best known throughout the Galaxy for its many spice mines, looked far from inviting, and he could easily recall numerous planets that were far more hospitable than this one, yet… Almost there. I missed you, Bultar. This time he wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. “Right, Shadday’s coordinates… Ah, there!” Carefully Vhiran steered the ship closer to the eastern side of the planet, looking for a place to turn to the surface. “Hmm?” He looked at the comm.-system, seeing the signal for an incoming transmission. Who could…

“Master! Not good!” The moment Shamila called out to him, a shadow appeared over them.

Immediately Vhiran turned his look upwards. A massive Venator-class Star Destroyer floated above them in Kessel’s orbit.

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Reminiscence – A Haiku

Today marks the day that, one year ago, two of my dear friends and I went on what would be the greatest journey we had ever been on: our nearly three week trip to Japan! It’s strange to imagine that right now we were high in the sky heading towards our destination. With everything that’s currently going on – of both the stressful and exciting variety – in my life, remembering the great travel has gone by nearly unnoticed. I’d say a haiku is the least I can do to shortly celebrate the great memories and experiences it etched into our minds! And who knows, perhaps even be some more posts about it might follow at a later date. No promises, though! ^_~

Through time and distance
I still vividly recall
That epic journey


The torii gate near our hotel in Ueno, Tokyo. (January 21, 2016. Photo by me)

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Between the Conclaves – 5. Eriadu, Author’s Notes

Today we’re going to do things a little different. Eriadu was the first story of the Between the Conclaves series for which I wrote author notes, giving a little peek into the process of creating the story. These notes will be appearing at the end of each story for the remainder of the series.

Like the stories themselves, no one aside from myself and less than a handful of friends have read these notes, so after nearly nine years, they will finally have their international premiere! Unlike the stories, these parts have been left exactly the way they were first written. I felt that way they’d better reflect what was going through my mind all those years ago. Please enjoy! ^_^

5. Eriadu

Author’s Notes

January 15, 2008
First of all, I must give credit to John Ostrander, who wrote, among other works, the “Star Wars: Purge” comic (an excellent piece of work, be it a bit on the short side). While I’ve made some small alterations to mould the story more to my purpose, I’ve attempted to remain in canon as well as possible, so from the scene where the clone patrol reaches a dead-end, the dialogue is almost completely taken from “Purge”.

I just finished writing “Eriadu”, and apart from “Dantooine: Reflections”, it has certainly been the toughest part of this series for me to write. I knew this beforehand, when I planned the basic outline for each part. It was to focus on a single character, Bultar. Until the clones came around, something I had not planned in the story’s initial stage, there were no other characters, so no dialogue, not even others to react to. The character’s inner monologue and thoughts, the description of the area and the mood, those were the pillars that were to support the story. I knew it would be difficult, but it took even longer than I had thought it would. Not as long as “Dantooine: Reflections” (hard to beat a full year hiatus), but still. In the end, I have to say that, although it’s not perfect and, as with all parts except “Nar Shaddaa”, turned out differently from what I had planned (not too much in this case), I’m quite satisfied about the end result and I hope you are too.

Now some notes on the story itself. Originally, this story was meant for Bultar to have some more “screen time”, something she severely lacked when I first planned out “Between the Conclaves”, because I was still unsure of writing a character that wasn’t completely my own brainchild. However, with “Dantooine: Reflections” she got her unexpected place in the spotlights. Instead of switching between her and Shamila’s view, as I had intended, she kind of took over the entire part! So as I finished part two I began to doubt whether I should still include “Eriadu”. The answer became clear when I finished “Kamino”. I had just dedicated the longest part of the series up until now to following Vhiran’s journey after Dantooine (with a bit of Shamila, who will get more attention later on). It would be unfair, not to mention odd, if I was going to leave Bultar completely out of the light until we got to Kessel. So, “Eriadu” remained. And that, as they say, is that.

The initial concept for this part was as follows: In orbit over Eriadu, Bultar senses a powerful Force presence on the planet and goes down to search for it. The search itself had not been worked out at all, but the story would end just before Bultar gave away to Tsui she was there, and then it would flow over into “Purge”, so their dialogue was initially not part of the story. The decision to add it was at the point where I finally was over my short hiatus and gained some inspiration to write on. I thought it would make for a better ending than the more open one I had in mind and that it would add a bit to the story (in more than one way). It’s mainly similar to the dialogue in “Purge”, but with some changes. Most are quite small, but there’s one more striking change: Bultar’s first words to Tsui. In the comic she greets him by saying “Well done, Tsui Choi.”. Personally, I did not like that line. While I don’t know if it was meant to, it kind of looks like she commends Choi on killing four people. That didn’t seem like something both the completely canonical Bultar, as well as “my” Bultar would say, especially with the whole thought train that precedes it. Conclusion: I changed it to something I thought would suit her character better, the line you see her say now.

‘If you carry a weapon, be prepared to take a life.’ Anime/manga fans will likely recognize the famous ‘A sword is a weapon. The art of swordsmanship is learning how to kill.’ in this, a line uttered at several occasions in “Rurouni Kenshin” (or “Samurai X”, for those who have only seen the English version). And that has indeed been the main inspiration for this part. I’ve gotten hooked on the series and have watched the anime nearly non-stop the past weeks (and strongly recommend it ^^). It sort of sneaked in the story when I started writing again.

Now that I think of it, a lot has sort of sneaked in. A lot of the story was, as I said, completely not planned out: the description of grey, desolate Old Town Factoryville, Bultar’s loneliness, her continuous struggle with her feelings both towards Vhiran as well as towards killing, and of course the six-legged Eriaduan rats (who are just awesome, because they have six legs). All of these pretty much formed during the writing itself. Aside from the initial concept, only the scene with her connection with Vhiran was somewhat planned ahead. That one I had thought up while writing Vhiran’s own inner struggle (in “Kamino”) about the deaths he had caused (though even this was not fully realized until the story’s later stages).

Yes, what more can I say now? I don’t know really. I don’t know what more I can tell/explain/expand on. Perhaps more things will come to mind later on, and I shall share some more of my wondrous insights!

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Last Minutes to Midnight – A Year’s End Haiku

For some it may have already happened, for others it’s still a few hours away, but right here, it’s just five more minutes before 2016 finally comes to an end! What better way to conclude it than with a good old little year’s end haiku? Well, aside from an end to all things awful that still scour the earth and trading back all the awesome people who passed away for the scum still drawing breath, of course… ^_~ Just five more minutes and the new year begins! May it be an awesome one! See you next year, everyone! ^_^

Last Minutes to Midnight
The clock keeps ticking
As the year’s end approaches
A new beginning


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Itsa Me!

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Who? Just your average descendant of two sea-faring peoples, recently graduated anthropology Master and aspiring author with a life-long passion for writing.

What? Uhm, human. I think... Also a bit crazy, but in a good way. I think...

Where? A land under the sea, far, far away. Occasionally with my head in the clouds.

Why? Trying to get both my work and my love for writing out there, sharing them with others and getting in touch with fellow writers, artists and other like-minded people.

Hi! ^_^

NaNoWriMo 2016
NaNoWriMo 2015

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