Daily Writing Part 146 Story of Poems Part 80

Random words of the day: Refugee. Shooting

A bit more mood setting this time around, but also what looks like some more lore of the story’s world. While there is some logic to think the enigmatic Event mentioned here is somehow connected to either the Voice, the pirates or another of the many mysterious entities that have made their appearance (it’s the first thing that crossed my mind, anyway), logic has proven not to be the most, consistent visitor of the story. So what is the Event? As usual I must leave the answer to that to not just your, but all of our imaginations for now. I’m certain all will become clear in due time. It’s only logical, right? ^_~

Before we continue to the main event, a quick detour. Yes, with today’s words I could have gone for a more socially and politically involved bit. It certainly came to mind when I first saw them and even when I was writing. Eventually I decided against it, though. While they are topics I care about a great deal, they deserve the proper time and, attention given to them when discussed, something I did not believe I was capable of doing within my current time frame. Perhaps some other time.


The Artist’s Tale. Chapter 5
Beneath the early sun
A baby mouse ran through the glade
And just behind it followed suit
A brilliant parade

Accompanied by radios
All playing vibrant songs
The creatures in that great parade
They marched to right some wrongs

The endless crowd moved lightning fast
Like a shooting star it went
For they knew they’d be refugees
If it came to the Event

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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.

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

 

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Between the Conclaves – Epilogue, Part 1

Epilogue

Part 1

The Imperial Palace on Coruscant – One month since the Conclave on Kessel

From under the hood Inquisitor Raeynil Ashgnar eyed the two other people summoned to the Emperor’s office with suspicion. Darth Vader, Dark Lord of the Sith, stood at the Emperor’s side, his over two meters towering over the others in the room. Still much uncontrolled anger hidden under that mask, I see, Raeynil thought. No wonder Kessel almost proved your demise. The Inquisitor’s eyes narrowed. Your disobedience proved useful that time around, but attempt to undermine the foundations of the Empire again, and your grave shall be at my feet.

“My Lord, everything is going as planned thus-far. The girl seems to believe everything she has been told by her Master. Her loyalty to him is unwavering. And with him in the service of the Empire, we can be guaranteed of her loyalty to you as well,” the man in the seat next to Raeynil reported to the Emperor. “Things are going well.”

Ashgnar turned to watch him. Giman Tanár, an at first sight frail looking Shi’ido and one of the few non-Humans to have a position in the higher echelons of the Empire, this time did not hide the blue skin and slightly coned head that were distinctive for his species’ natural form. Don’t think we’ll let our guard down just because you’re not wearing your mask. An alien, your loyalty is even more questionable than Vader’s. I’m watching you.

For a moment Tanár gave the Inquisitor an uneasy look, then quickly turned back to Palpatine.

“Good. Very good.” The Emperor nodded at Tanár approvingly. “Inquisitor?” He looked at Ashgnar. “Is there something you have to say?”

Raeynil made a short nod. “Indeed there is, Your Majesty. I must object to Tanár’s conclusion.”

“What are you talking ab…”

Palpatine raised his hand to interrupt the Shi’ido. “Do tell us, Inquisitor Ashgnar. What seems to be the problem?”

“Thank you, Your Majesty.” Ashgnar bowed. “Tanár may be correct in saying the girl Shamila’s loyalty is very strong. But…” The Inquisitor sat upright in the seat. “In the past weeks I have seen her being treated overly soft in her current care, and she is growing weak because of it, both mentally and physically. Loyalty and weakness are only a viable combination if we were breading fodder. And…” Raeynil looked at Vader. “I believe that is not what Lord Vader had in mind for her when he took her here. Is it now, Lord Vader?”

“It is not,” Vader replied shortly. His voice sounded calm, but Raeynil could feel the Dark Lord’s gaze piercing from under his mask. The Inquisitor’s thin lips just formed a mocking, unnoticeable smirk under the shadow of the hood.

“She receives rigorous training daily!” Tanár exclaimed in an irritated tone while looking at Ashgnar from the corner of his eye. “I can guarantee you, my Lord Emperor, the girl is n…”

“Putting aside the borderline pampering treatment she recieves outside of it, that so-called training you speak of is worthless,” Raeynil interrupted icily. “Because she looks and acts like an innocent little girl, she is seen and treated like one. I, however, see the full potential that lies within her, much of it untapped. If this potential is to be tapped to the fullest, if we are to transform this girl into the most effective weapon in the Empire’s arsenal yet…” The Inquisitor’s invisible gaze fell on a nervous turning Vader during the short pause that followed. “We are to be harsh, and unforgiving, so that she may become this way too. She must know what it feels like to experience true pain, to have one’s mind broken, to feel the touch of death, so that she may bring that upon those who stand in our way. She must be ready to fight, to kill and die for the Empire, in any way necessary, in any given situation, at any given moment, and without question. To be the Emperor’s blade, delivering swift justice wherever His Majesty demands, that is to be her purpose. A blade so sharp it could cut through anything in its path, without breaking. A weapon our current smith is, unable to forge.”


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Daily Writing Part 145 Story of Poems Part 79

Random words of the day: Parade. Radio

I swear I did not do anything to influence this! The random word generator actually decided to give me the word parade just a week after it was used in the opening of this chapter! I was worried for a bit that using the same word twice in such a short time would make this stanza come out awkward, but those fears seem unwarranted now. I’d say that, along with the first part, it works well to set the mood for the new chapter and whatever lies ahead in the story!


The Artist’s Tale. Chapter 5
Beneath the early sun
A baby mouse ran through the glade
And just behind it followed suit
A brilliant parade

Accompanied by radios
All playing vibrant songs
The creatures in that great parade
They marched to right some wrongs

113013-TOHHOL-122E


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.

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

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Between the Conclaves – 7. Coruscant, Author’s Notes

And so the (technically) last chapter of the Between the Conclaves series has come to an end. Next week the epilogue begins, heralding the end of the series. Today, though, we’ll have another look at the author’s notes I wrote for it, nearly ten years ago. Longer and more in-depth than the previous ones, this one was especially fun and interesting to read back as it gives a really good glimpse into my writing mind and process at the time. Now, since it is longer than usual, I won’t hold you any longer and let you get to reading. Please enjoy! ^_^


7. Coruscant

Author’s Notes

11-02-2008, 11:13 AM
What? Dead? Who said anything about them being dead? I don’t recall myself saying they were dead? Did I say they were dead? Bultar? Yeah, she’s dead. Dead as, something that is no longer alive. But the others? Nah! Perhaps you should read through the previous author’s notes again. I never said anything of them having died. Tsk, seriously… ^_~

Yup, it does look like Vhiran and Shamila are still alive and kicking. Some might be somewhat disappointed by this. Considering the end to the confrontation on Kessel, the sudden and dramatic death of the three protagonists, one might think the survival of two a bit of an anticlimax for the last chapter of the series. It is how it should be though. This is how I planned things out. Although some things may go a bit (or a lot) different when actually written down, the story itself has been planned out from when I first started thinking it up. Everything that happens happens for a reason, and that is that. You may like it or not. But, unless you were one of the select few (that being Nill and myself), you’re not honestly going to tell me you were expecting the other twist ‘Coruscant’ brought! Our heroes joining the Galactic Empire, their mortal enemy?! Come on! Who’d think a noble and sympathetic Jedi Master like Vhiran would join the ranks of one the biggest forces of evil in all of Star Wars (that didn’t turn out to be as evil as we thought! or did it? dun dun dun!)?! And then a sweet and innocent young Padawan following him?! Who’d think that’d happen after all they’ve been through? I didn’t! Wait… I did… But I bet you didn’t! Hah!

Yeah, it’s all planned out. Nothing in my stories, at least the ‘Between the Conclaves’ series, happens without reason. That doesn’t mean, as I said earlier, some things can’t change while realising the story itself. And boy did things change in this one, like, completely!

First of all, it was meant to be an interlude to a follow-up story for ‘Order 66’ (currently being written by Nill and me), before I had begun with Between the Conclaves. As I began the series, mainly as a bridge between ‘Order 66’ and its follow-up, I thought it would serve its purpose better in this series. Originally Shamila was to be found be Vader (a scene that was to be in ‘Kessel’, but was cut out altogether later on) and taken to Coruscant. She’d wake up in Palpatine’s office where she’d encounter Palpatine. She was frightened, but then he’d suddenly show remorse for his actions and then he’d try to convince her join the Empire. Then Vhiran would come along, having already joined the Empire, and explain everything to her, about how the Empire isn’t really that bad and convince her to join. Shamila’s decision would not be seen, but should have been pretty obvious at the end of the part. That’s the original ‘Coruscant’ in a nutshell, and as you can see: it didn’t make it to the final cut, though I still have the “draft script”. One of the first thoughts when I began on this part: What the heck would a ten-year old comatose girl be doing in an office chair?! It was rather odd, so I changed that to the more believable medbay. Also, Vhiran was to be the better a better welcome committee than Palpatine so he got the part, and the Emperor was eventually left out completely. *dodges Force lightning and continues typing in a safely hidden spot*

The nightmare sequence. Another thing that wasn’t at all in the original idea for ‘Coruscant’. Mainly it was meant to show Shamila’s feeling of powerlessness in the Kessel attack and the guilt about not being able to protect anyone. Personally I find this the better part of this chapter, and I enjoyed writing it the most. Probably has something to do with it being such a bizarre and freaky scene (I like those ^^). It’s a bit like when Nillanthir’s body spontaneously started levitating and combusted in the nightmare in ‘Dantooine: Reflections’, only creepier. It just smacks you in the face, leaving you with a “WTF?!” feeling (I hope ^^), and, if I’ve done the job as well as I hope I did, also with at least a slight gulp or chill. My fondness for dream/vision sequences also plays a role. And if you have a bit of knowledge on Japanese horror movies, the second part of the nightmare should have something familiar about it. I’ve taken some of the creepiest part from probably one of the scariest movies I’ve ever seen, ‘Ju-On – The Grudge’ (the Japanese original, not the American remake), and derived them to fit in here. How did I do?

Raeynil Ashgnar, the enigmatic hooded Inquisitor, was not supposed to make an appearance in this series at all! But as with many things while writing ‘Coruscant’, at one point I just decided to use this character. Raeynil is more than a MacGuffin (character that is only there to get the plot along but does not play any significant part other than that) though, and will be playing an important part in the future.

And wow, seven pages! I thought this’d be about five pages or bordering six max! (Raeynil: You thought wrong…) No, definitely not expected this to be the longest part in the series! Sometimes I surprise even myself!

Now, there’s a particular little thing I wanted to talk about, namely naming (pun intended) my characters. I used to create most character names with either an online name generator (Vhiran’s an example of that) or just out of the blue. More lately I like to give meanings to the names I give my character, some deeper than others. Mumei was the first nameless in this part who received such a “name with a meaning”. It would be odd to have Raeynil speak of “Commander Aoshi and, uhm, that nameless Nar Shaddaa officer guy”. He had to have a name. Then it hit me! The guy’s nameless, so why not go with that? Zhang Yimou did it in “Hero”, right? So I took an online English-Japanese dictionary and looked up ‘nameless’. Result: Mumei! Mumei it was!

Raeynil Ashgnar’s name is a combination of the names of two minor characters in a story I had began writing on long before I even knew the people of the Earth Jedi Order, with whom I wrote ‘Order 66’; Raeynil and Ashgnar. I liked the names when I created the Inquisitor and decided to go for it. Only while writing ‘Coruscant’ did I see they can in fact have a meaning behind it. Raeynil and Ashgnar were a female and a male character respectively, and since even the Inquisitor’s sex is unknown, a name combining a female and a male name would be fitting. That’s how I see it anyway.

I am also very fond of puns and anagrams so I use them often to name characters (and also locations, ships, organisations, etc.). Finoru Asafia and Sinoa Huu-Fao (‘Kamino’) are anagrams of my own name and my sister’s name respectively. Nalar Namkic, the name of the senior officer from ‘Kessel’ is an anagram too. The author’s notes on that story give a hint on what it is a play, though by telling that it should be clear by now. And Vadi Cin, Tha’ci’s old Padawan from ‘Kamino’? Anagram! Think of a brilliant thinker whose ideas were often far ahead of his time and you’ll find out where her name comes from.

Then there are characters that are based on existing people or characters and their names are a play on the original names. Tha’ci is the best example. She was based on my favourite character from the Soul Calibur game series, the kunoichi and demon hunter Taki.

Lastly, some of the characters have just been assigned names that happened to fit them but don’t have any particular meaning. Shu Yi from ‘Kamino’ is one of them. I came up with her name after viewing some other Kaminoan names. It didn’t have any meaning (that I know of), but, it sounded Kaminoan to me and I liked the sound of it, so I stuck with it. And that, as they say, is that.

Thus concludes chapter 7, the last chapter of ‘Between the Conclaves’ (yes, I know it’s now technically beyond the conclaves. Shut up! :P). But that doesn’t mean the series is over yet. An epilogue will be written to conclude of the series. Some of the loose ends will be tied together, some will not, and yet other ends may be completely unravelled (as in, summoning even more questions! Ahahaha!) I hope you enjoyed this near last part of the series. I know there were a whole lot of chunks of long dialogue this time around, but they were necessary for the extensive explanation Shamila had to be given and I hope it didn’t turn out all too long-winded and/or repetitive as I thought it was at times.

Anyway, thanks for sticking with me so far and see you in the epilogue!


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Daily Writing Part 144 Story of Poems Part 78

Random words of the day: Baby. Mouse

And we are back! Finally! Alright, how many times have I said that now and then followed up with a gap of at least several weeks in-between posts? Too many to count… Today, though, I’m having a good feeling about this.

Today it’s time for a fresh start for one of my favourite series here on the Ashukahwa Archives. It’s been nearly two months since the fourth chapter of The Artist’s Tale came to an end and, just like I’ve said in the introduction to that chapter’s end, a lot has happened during that time. Now, however, I’m filled with new energy! I’m feeling utterly ready to turn this story of poems back into a weekly series once more and bring back some life to what has been an awfully quiet blog for some time now!

So it is with great joy that I present to you all: the fifth chapter of The Artist’s Tale!


The Artist’s Tale. Chapter 5
Beneath the early sun
A baby mouse ran through the glade
And just behind it followed suit
A brilliant parade

4688479537_c7c0ef9a24_z


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.

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

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Between the Conclaves – 7. Coruscant, Part 7

7. Coruscant

Part 7

Shamila felt stifled the moment Ashgnar had started speaking to her, and just stared at where the enigmatic Inquisitor had disappeared.

“An intriguing person, hmm?” Vhiran remarked. “It is said no one but the Emperor himself has seen Raeynil Ashgnar’s face. All background, age, species, even sex… All but the Inquistor’s title are unknown.”

She could only hear him vaguely. Inside she felt like she was crumbling. The unwavering trust she had placed in the people that had raised her, had been her family for as long she could remember, everything she was taught and had built on, all she had believed as truth for her entire life, short though it had been… Slowly but surely all of it was crumbling down. Everything… Was everything a lie? It, it can’t be! But, but it is, right? What’s going on? Why is this all happening? What should I, what should I do? Her eyes shut tightly, she fell to her knees. “W-what sh-should I, do?” she sobbed. “WHAT SHOULD I DO?!” First her lips, then her arms and within moments her body was trembling wildly. Not able or even trying to react, she fell down. The fall seemed so long, just like at Kessel, and for a moment she relived that horrible moment again: Vhiran sitting motionless in his seat, the wind pulling her through the ship’s shattered windows, and finally the fall, the final fall down to the planet surface. It’s over… Just before hitting the ground she could feel a pair of arms under her. She lied still. Her vision started to turn blurry, her mind dazed and blank.

“Shamila.” She heard the worried voice only vaguely. “Shamila, are you alright?”

Still trembling Shamila slowly opened her eyes to see Vhiran bent over her, holding her in his arms. She cried. “I’m, sorry, Master. It’s, it’s just…”

“Don’t worry, Shamila.” Vhiran replied calmly and lifted her up. “I should be the one to be sorry. It’s much to take at once, perhaps too much. You want to rest some more?”

Slowly the girl nodded. “Y-yes,” she whispered. While her Master carried her through the halls, supporting her small body with one arm and gently stroking through her hair, she wrapped her arms around his neck and lied her head on his shoulder. “I’m, sorry.”

“Don’t…”

I know you will be strong one day. You must protect the innocent.’ The words Nillanthir had said to her shortly before their parting on Zaloriis suddenly rang through her head. Recalling his words and image to mind, she started to calm down again. Her inner turmoil, all the thoughts of worry, fear, and guilt that had raged through her head some moments ago, all ebbed away. Yes, I’ll become strong, Nill. With her eyes still closed and her head on Vhiran’s shoulder, she smiled. And I’ll protect the innocent, I promise.

If we are to meet again, then may it be the day we will never part again.’

Yes. A single tear flowed down her cheek, a tear of happiness. May it be. With a soft sigh she let a peaceful slumber fall over her.


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Between the Conclaves – 7. Coruscant, Part 6

7. Coruscant

Part 6

Shamila saw her Master rise back to his feet and looked behind her to see someone having stopped behind them. The person wore flowing dark blue robes with a face-covering hood and emanated something odd, something that immediately gave her a feeling of warmth and comfort. While over a head shorter than her Master, the mere sight of this person was most certainly inspiring.

Vhiran made a short bow. “Indeed, Inquisitor,” he replied. “This is Shamila. Shamila.” He inclined his hands towards the Inquisitor. “Raeynil Ashgnar of the Imperial Inquisitorius.”

Ashgnar nodded. “Shamila, you do good not to take things at face value and instead question them thoroughly, especially considering the sudden change in your situation. I will answer your questions. No, not all Jedi were involved in the planned uprising, most of them were in fact innocent and not at all targets of the Galactic Empire. Still, many have taken on a hostile stance against the Empire, largely because of those events you mentioned. The attacks at Zaloriis and Nar Shaddaa were incidents with rogue commanders holding long-standing personal grudges against Master Nillanthir Zerati and your own Master. Both Commander Aoshi on Zaloriis as well as Captain Mumei at Nar Shaddaa thought they could act outside Imperial law and use the resources at their command to settle these grudges. They thought wrong.”

Even though she had no liking to those officers, Shamila shivered at the thought of what fate might have awaited them as she heard the Inquisitor’s voice turning cold.

The reason of the attack on the Jedi Temple was to weed out the insurgents Master Ashukahwa just spoke to you about. However a few overly fanatical battalions, no doubt result of faulty cloning procedures surfacing just then, were unable to follow their orders properly. At one point they started firing not only at the insurgents, but at everyone in their path who was not part of the 501st Legion, and even set the Temple ablaze so that none of their targets would escape. The result is known all too well. As Inquisitor I’ve experienced my share of gruesomeness, and over the years seem to have developed some immunity to what would make most stomachs turn and minds snap without trouble, but upon witnessing this with my own eyes…” Ashgnar’s gaze seemed to turn upward to the high windows. “Needless to say those responsible were punished, immediately and harshly.”

“And the attack over Kessel was an unfortunate joining of circumstances,” Vhiran added to the Inquisitor’s explanation after a short silence. “The morning before our arrival there, Lord Vader had left for Kessel for a confidential mission. Captain Nalar Namkic had received orders to block access to the planet to all without personal permission from Lord Vader. At that point still believing the Empire’s true stance against the Jedi was a hostile one, I tried to sneak through with a false identity. Captain Namkic saw through my act and naturally believed I was out to stir up trouble. So he followed his orders and attacked.”

“And that’s how it is,” Ashgnar continued. “But if you are the smart girl I know you are, you will not trust everything we have told you just like that. Keep your mind and your senses open. Let the words sink into your mind, think about them, question them, analyze their meanings, their every detail. Do so over and over again, until you have unravelled their true meaning, and found the truth.” For a moment Shamila thought she spotted a slight smile from under the hood. “I sense you are a talented girl, Shamila. Put that talent to good use. The people of the Galaxy need you, certainly in times like these.” The Inquisitor turned to Vhiran. “Master Ashukahwa. His Majesty is expecting you.”

Vhiran nodded. “Yes, we were under way.”

“Excellent.” Ashgnar nodded approvingly. “Until we meet again.” With that Raeynil turned around and within a split moment the flowing robes were all the two could see disappear around the neareast corner.


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Itsa Me!

 photo Avatar70.png

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
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