The First Jedi 4:
by Fur and Fantasy
full contents and notes located at the bottom of the file
Raki opened one eye when a soft whistle changed the audio resonance of the room, then closed it again when he saw it was only Wiliran sitting on the window ledge, the window now open. A few minutes later he lifted his head to look at the other two in the room, not sure if he should be getting up so early like the Vor or if there was time to sleep more.
With both Tanlor and Tekika still soundly asleep, he decided it was safe to sleep for a bit longer.
Before too long though, the gradually encroaching sunlight in the Temple was rousing him, Wiliran moving out of the window to let it in, a bright beam falling directly on Tanlor and starting to rouse the cold-blooded Tiss'shar.
Raki slowly stood, careful of his still not-quite-steady legs, and stretched out, enjoying the first movements of the day.
He turned his head on its long neck to look at Wiliran. "How long before we eat?" He asked quietly.
"Whenever you're ready," she said quietly. "Meals aren't really scheduled. Want me to show you the way?"
"I was hoping for time to bathe first." He grinned at her and fluffed his soft, crystalline feathers out before slipping into the bathroom with its mist-shower over a large oval bathtub.
A few minutes passed as he let the water warm up and started to clean up before the door slid open again. Tanlor walked in, clearly just waking up as he yawned, showing a large collection of razor-sharp teeth as he glanced about the room briefly and shook himself out, still a little sluggish.
"Morning, Tanlor." Raki chirped in welcome as he fluffed his feathers to get water all the way down to his skin to wash away the dirt and bits of plan material of the day before.
"Morning," the Tiss'shar nodded slightly. "That water warm?" He asked.
"Yes, care to join me?" He offered easily and stepped a bit foreword to give the other youth room.
"Yes, thank you," Tanlor nodded, slipping into the pool and seeming to perk up almost immediately. "You don't mind sharing a bath then?" He asked Raki.
"Not at all." He grinned at the Tiss'shar. "Especially not with flock-mates ... roommates ... and such. The heat is good for you?" He asked curiously about the abrupt shift in Tanlor's awareness.
"Yeah, it is," the Tiss'shar nodded. "Especially when I'm still run down. Speeds things up after a cooler night."
"Why does the temperature matter?" Raki grabbed a handful of soft soap crystals and began the work on his dusty body.
"Cold-blooded," Tanlor explained. "My body temperature's whatever the rest of the world's at, so if it's colder I'm a little sluggish until I manage to warm up. Want some help with that?" He offered.
"Ohh, I'd like that very much." Raki ruffled his feathers in excitement. "Your scales are strong enough that you won't be cut by them yet."
"I'll have to learn to be careful around them anyways," Tanlor pointed out with a chirp as he moved to help wash the Ka-Karur. "Hard to stay in the same room without bumping into each other occasionally, after all."
"True," he nodded and helped out as best he could. "You'll have another six months before they are particularly dangerous to you. By then, I'll be much more coordinated."
"You're doing pretty well even now, really," Tanlor pointed out. "A Tiss'shar your age wouldn't even be walking yet."
"I've been told that Ka-Karur mature very quickly for as long as we live." Raki nodded and crooned in the pleasure of being groomed by another. "Even the Council seemed a bit surprised when I met them."
"How long do you live?" Tanlor asked curiously.
"Barring violence and disease, over three hundred years." Raki said softly. "Not many make it that long, but it's known."
"Whoa," the Tiss'shar said, blinking as he paused for a moment. "And here I thought my people got old."
"How long do your kind live?" He snaked his head over his shoulder to look at him.
"Something like a hundred, if nothing else catches us first," Tanlor said easily. "It seems like a lot when you're six," he pointed out a little sheepishly as he returned to the scrubbing.
"I can't even figure out what it would be like to be that old," Raki chuckled in agreement. "Most Ka-Karur don't live fifty years. That's when our feathers start to loose their strength and turn white."
"Well, as a Jedi, that'll probably take longer," Tanlor told him. "Jedi last a long time, usually."
"As long as they don't get killed on a mission." He nodded, then groaned deeply when Tanlor's work moved over a sore muscle bunch from the day before. "Oh, that feels good."
"Still stiff from that fall from the baffor tree?" Tanlor asked, working it over carefully.
"A little." He nodded. "And more running and jumping than I've ever done."
"You'll get used to it," Tanlor chuckled. "Trust me, you'll get used to it. Once you're walking better and start the physical training, you'll think last night was nothing."
"I don't doubt it." Raki grinned and dropped into the water pool of the tub to rinse off with much splashing and ruffling of feathers in the warm water. "I only started to really walk a month ago. An adult can run for days without trouble."
"So how long have the Ka-Karur known about the Republic?" Tanlor asked as he started washing himself down quickly, the process a lot easier with his smooth-scaled skin.
"Eighty years. A Jedi named Connor came to Evidran. He died stopping the Trade Federation from killing us all. I'm the first hatchling strong enough to be a Jedi since then. Speaks-with-Jedi was called Nose-in-Danger then. He was the first Ka-Karur to leave Evidran, and he convinced the Republic we are people, not animals. We have had a Jedi Temple on Evidran ever since."
"So your name is connected to that story?" Tanlor asked him between dunking down to rinse himself off briefly.
"Yes," he nodded slightly. "It means 'First-Jedi-Honors-Connor'. Whoever came to this Temple first would bear it. That was decided before the Temple on Evidran was even built."
"That's a heck of a name to try to live up to," Tanlor nodded. "Not entirely sure what mine means, honestly. Meanings aren't as important as they used to be back home."
"Ours tend to be descriptive." Raki splashed in the water a bit more before standing and shaking off vigorously. "Tends-the-Wounds are healers, Hunts-Rikuuta have learned how to bring in the monster fish. My mother, Sky-Dancer, could fly and dance in the air. I think it's called Telekinetics. White-Star had a white marking on his chest feathers. Speaks-with-Jedi was the first to speak with a Jedi. Climbs-High liked to do that. Things like that. Many of us have several over our lives."
"It used to be like that for us too," Tanlor nodded, climbing out and shaking down on his own. "Some of us still want it to be, but changing names can cause trouble if it happens too much. Do you name yourselves, or your own kind have to choose one?" He asked.
"Sometimes it's chosen by others, sometimes ourselves. Most of the time a name simply happens over time until everyone uses it. Not many take it all that seriously. It's just what we're called, not who we are."
"I think I like that system," the Tiss'shar grinned. "So, breakfast?"
"Sounds good." Raki nodded and stepped out of the tub. "They do serve meat here, right?"
"Oh yeah," Tanlor grinned. "Lots of different types too. Too many carnivores around here for them to really try and stick to vegetarian menus."
"Good," he let out a little breath of relief and ducked out of the bathroom, his freshly cleaned crystalline feathers glittering in the daylight. "I'm hungry."
"Don't blame you," Tanlor said, following him out. "Willie, Tekika want to come get something to eat?" He asked, not sure if the Archaeopteryx was awake enough yet.
"Always," she looked up and shook herself out. "You all warm again?"
"Yep," Tanlor nodded. "Still faster than sunbathing."
"Sounds good." The Vor nodded and hopped down from the window ledge.
"Well, let's go then," the Tiss'shar said easily, starting to lead the foursome out, none of them bothering with clothing just now
Which, Raki noticed as they made their way through the halls, wasn't too uncommon here; a number of the Initiates were wearing little or nothing, though most of the humanoids were wearing more than the saurians, and the older the people got, the more likely they were to wear something, even if not the full Jedi robes.
"How do they decide who wears what here?" Raki asked as they entered the largest room he's ever seen, filled with youngsters and a handful of adults of several sore of races.
"Mostly what it takes to cover up whatever should be covered up," Wilira said as they got into line. "You get off this floor, a lot more folks are wearing the robes and stuff. I'm probably not going to be wearing them for a while yet; they make flying tricky sometimes."
"I imagine so," Raki nodded with a look at her before the scents of meat and spices and other delicious smelling things focused his attention further ahead to the offerings on hand.
The four of them collected their breakfasts, all three helping Raki pick out a variety of foods they thought he would enjoy before they found a table to eat at.
"You familiar with utensils?" Tanlor asked Raki as they started to eat.
"A little," He nodded and picked up a knife and fork to cut up the extra-rare steak that was his main course. While more than a bit awkward with his long fingers and large curved claws tipping them, he did manage to get through the steak without trouble.
"Okay," Tanlor nodded, handling his own utensils more easily with his better hands, though he did have to concentrate to keep from dropping the knife at several points.
"You're pretty good with those." Tekika commented with a pleased chirp.
"Thank you." Raki nodded to her and picked up the drink container designed for those without lips. Once more, he was grateful that he wasn't like Master B'lyn, who could choke while drinking. It was awkward, but he tipped his head all the way back and let the pointed opening of the container pour a mildly sweet liquid down his open throat.
It was good; it tasted like some of the berries and fruits he'd tried on Evidran or on the ship on the way. He had to assume it was made out of the same sort of things.
As hard as it was to eat like these people, their food was delicious and varied in a way he'd never have had on Evidran.
The others ate and drank on their own, and Raki had a few moments to look around. He certainly wasn't the only one with unusual needs when he ate. There were actually a few Initiates who were quadrupeds with no manipulative limbs at all, eating and drinking out of bowls.
Then something that he just couldn't process came into view and Raki's gaze didn't leave it as the bright green, many-limbed creature collected a plate of food not too unlike his own and found a seat.
"That's a Verpine." Wiliran supplied between bites of a thick, meaty stew. "Insectoid."
"Try not to stare, Raki. It's not polite." Tekika told him gently. "Even if they do look like the biggest walking snack you've ever seen."
"Sorry," Raki ducked his head and focused on his meal, though he did keep stealing glances around at all the varied races.
"You're new, most people understand," Tanlor explained. "But it is better to get used to 'em fast. Lots of different species around here, and there are more that just don't have Jedi."
"I heard there were hundreds of races," he shook his head a bit and focused on his meal. "I just didn't believe there could be that many kinds of people."
"It's about right," Wilira nodded. "Lots of different planets, dozens of systems, and most of them have at least one planet that has life on it."
"You will be introduced to many of them over the next weeks." Knight Thorrson added as he walked up, noting their all but finished meals. "How was your morning, Raki?" He asked politely.
"Very good, Knight Thorrson." Raki focused on the Trandoshan. "The bath-showers are very nice, the food is good, and I like my roommates." He nodded towards the other three with the greatest compliment he could at that point.
"Good to know," the Trandoshan chuckled deeply. "Once you are done with your meal, it would be a good time to conduct a more thorough tour, discuss some of your classes."
"Yes, Knight Thorsson." Raki nodded and quickly cleaned up what little was left on his plate. "Where should I put this?"
"Over there," Knight Thorsson said easily and pointed to a receptacle, one of many like it around the large dinning area.
"Thank you, Knight Thorsson." He nodded and quickly strode there, not quite a run, but a fast pace on very long legs and returned before the Knight could offer to go with him. "I would like that tour."
"Follow me then," he said easily as the fluffy-feathered Ka-Karur happily jogged along, easily keeping up with the adult Trandoshan. "We'll start out at your quarters, so you know the way from there."
"Thank you, Knight Thorsson."
"You already know how to reach the cafeteria," the Trandoshan explained easily as they walked along. "There is another on the next floor down, in case there should be a rush or somesuch, but it's usually not necessary. Over time, you will be expected to take on some of the chores and duties around here, so you should consider what you might like to do. Cafeteria duty is reasonably popular, though there are many other possibilities."
"I will look up what is available," Raki nodded and filed that away to look up after the major races of the Republic.
"Your main classes, for now, will be language and knowledge-based," Knight Thorsson explained. "In particular, Jedi and Republic History. With over twenty thousand years of events to try and track, we like to start early." They reached Raki's quarters, turning to return to the lift. "The next three floors above us are primarily classes."
"Is it just things to remember in these classes?" Raki asked curiously.
"In some of them," Knight Thorsson nodded. "The history classes, mostly. The language classes include new languages, and new ways to use the ones you already know."
Raki nodded. "Sounds like fairly easy classes."
"Wait until you're taking your tests on the origin of the Jedi," the Trandoshan chuckled. "Especially the comparative ones." They reached the right floor, much cooler and less humid, and stepped off. "We're also going to start you on your physical training in the next month, both Jedi and Ka-Karur techniques, and basic Force training. I understand you have a talent for telekinesis?"
"Yes, Knight Thorsson, and a perfect memory." He nodded slightly as he took in everything around him with every sense he had.
"A racial trait?" The Trandoshan asked, not remembering that from his briefing.
"No, Knight Thorsson." He explained with a happy chirp. "It is common for those who will learn a skill, a ... profession. Very common among Force-users too."
"It will serve you well, as a student and Jedi," he nodded. "You should consider specializing as an investigator or scholar, if the work agrees with you."
"I will consider it, Knight Thorsson." Raki dipped his head even as he was digging up the definitions of those two words. He could place the scholars; the Jedi's lorekeepers. Investigator he wasn't as clear on, but he remembered being told it had something to do with searching for problems ... he couldn't quite understand all of it, honestly.
"Here is where you'll be taking your history and language classes," the Trandoshan said, indicating several classrooms. "They're not in session just now, or I'd introduce you to your Masters, but you'll meet them soon enough."
"I am looking forward to it, Knight Thorsson." He chirped, eager to learn what was on offer. He could tell that there were other classes meeting, just not his. As they walked along, he heard the distinctive sounds of lightsabers... lots of them. "Fighting practice?"
"Early stages," Knight Thorsson nodded. "It's a rec-room during the off-hours, but for a few hours every day it's used to teach basic lightsaber control."
"I won't be for a while yet, though, will I?" Raki glanced up at the older Jedi.
"Not more than the most basic, and that's up to what we find about your physical abilities," he agreed. "They don't use real lightsabers in there though. Initiates only use training 'sabers until they become Padawans."
"What is the difference?"
"Have you seen what a real lightsaber is capable of doing in battle?" Knight Thorsson asked him.
"No, Knight Thorsson." Raki shook his head slightly.
"A lightsaber, a true lightsaber, burns hot enough to cut through most materials with ease," the Trandoshan explained. "They can sever limbs almost without effort. A training lightsaber is modified in such a way that it cannot inflict lethal injuries unless you are very determined to do so. It handles like a real lightsaber, and it can stop one, but those are largely the only similarities. A mistake is going to be far less traumatic."
"A good thing, when you are still learning what to do with it." He nodded seriously, impressed by the description of a real weapon's capabilities.
"Particularly given how many minor burns the medics end up treating during the first few weeks," the Trandoshan nodded. "If not for training sabers, there wouldn't be a non-Trandoshan Jedi alive who didn't have at least one cyber-limb. By the way, if it comes up, medical occupies the second floor."
"Understood, Knight Thorsson." Raki nodded.
The two of them started for another room, but Knight Thorsson paused as a small clock chimed.
"We'll have to continue the tour in a bit; you have an appointment," he explained, turning back towards the lifts. "If you'll follow me, you have a checkup in medical scheduled."
The two of them returned to the lift, taking it down the few floors they needed to, stepping out into the cooler, dryer air of medical, and quickly make their way back towards a set-off room. Raki perked up immediately as he sensed another Ka-Karur in the area.
"Rhah, RakiJedi-KurraConnor." The mature Ka-Karur in the room crooned to him.
"Rhah, Sa'as-Coruscant." Raki dipped his fore-body towards her in greeting.
"I will leave the two of you to your business," Knight Thorsson said easily, bowing slightly to the adult Ka-Karur. "One of the Knights will meet him when you are finished. Force be with the both of you."
"Thank you, Knight Thorsson." Sa'as-Coruscant dipped her head slightly, then turned to Raki. "Did you sleep well last night?"
"Yes, Sa'as-Coruscant." He nodded. "The sand they found for me is very fine and soft. The bathing water is wonderfully warm. The food is different, but it tastes good."
"Good," she gave him a quick check visually. "You seem to be in good shape for your age. How is your balance?"
"Good, most of the time, Sa'as-Coruscant. Sometimes I forget where my body is." He admitted quietly.
"That will come with practice," she assured him gently. "You are still very young. Have you been instructed in the use of the supplements you will need for your feathers to grow in properly?"
"Yes, Sa'as-Coruscant." He nodded. "One packet of the powder mixed into a meal once a week."
"Good. Now, let us begin the physical check. Mirror me." Sa'as-Coruscant told him before sliding forward so her hands and toes supported her full weight with her body and long, stiff tail almost parallel with her outstretched legs.
The position looks odd, but Raki didn't question her before he worked himself into it, his young limbs straining a bit to hold the unusual position.
He strained even more as she shifted to hold one arm out and balance on the other. It only took a moment before his arm buckled and he flopped to the ground.
With a near-instinctive level of stubbornness, he fought back up onto both arms, then tried to mirror his elder again, with about the same level of success. Frowning mentally, he tried again, then a fourth time, finally managing to hold the position, at least for a while.
"Now down and roll forward to your feet." She demonstrated with an easy grace. "Never move backwards. Once your feathers grow in, all motions not meant to do damage should be forward."
Raki dropped into the roll, managing that part of things easily enough. Coming up out of it was another issue; he managed to get his legs tangled when he was pulling them back under himself, squawking slightly in frustration as he untangled them and only just managed to not object when she gently guided him up with some support for his wobbling legs.
"That is quite good for your age, RakiJedi-KurraConnor." Sa'as-Coruscant assured him with a light smile. "You will have quite a natural grace when you are grown."
"I fell three times," he pointed out a little dubiously.
"You tried four times." She pointed out with a gentle croon. "And you succeeded in the end."
"True," he assented. "Were you just trying to see how well I moved?"
"And how strong you are." She nodded. "You are the first to be raised away from Evidran. We do not know how this will affect you; there are so many things different. The next few years I will be by often to make sure you are growing up as you should."
"I understand, Sa'as-Coruscant," he nodded. "It is very different here," he admitted and got a nuzzle to the side of his head.
"You will not be alone, RakiJedi-KurraConnor." She crooned softly and put a hand on his shoulder. "We will be here often, and the Jedi understand we need a flock to be healthy."
"Thank you," he said gratefully. "They are trying to help with that."
"And how are they doing?" She cocked her head slightly.
"Pretty well," he admitted. "It's not like home, but my roommates are nice. One of them even looks kind of like a Ka-Karur."
"Yes, the Tiss'shar." She clicked with a nod. "I thought he might be nice to be around. Tekika, with her feathers, seemed a good choice as well. They are all also at the age where you will all be ready to be taken as Padawans within a couple years of each other."
"And where they can be careful around a clumsy ball of sharp feathers," Raki said a little sheepishly. "They are nice though."
"They are also much closer to your level of development." The healer added. "You would quickly be bored with most six month olds. You were more developed on your hatching day."
"I guessed that much," he nodded. "Most people grow up slow, don't they?"
"Yes, they do. Most also live much longer than we do before they are old." She added. "Though few survive as long as we can once they are old. Living away from Evidran has had some effect on those of us to stay out here for many years, but none of us are sensitives like you. It is best to be home for a time every few years, and we have made this clear to the Order. They are agreeable to it, as long as it does not interfere with your training or duties. Do make sure it does not."
"I will, Sa'as-Coruscant," he nodded. "As well as I can."
"It is all I ask, RakiJedi-KurraConnor." She clicked agreeably. "Do you have any questions for me before you continue your tour?"
"Not that I can think of, Sa'as-Coruscant," he said easily. "Not now, at least."
She nodded and opened the door to find a lean Ringtail on the other side.
"Greetings, Jedi Coron." She dipped her head to him. "We are done."
"Thank you, Sa'as Coruscant" the Ringtail said, bowing politely. "RakiJedi-KurraConnor, if you will come with me? We'll finish up your tour quickly."
"Yes, Knight Coron." Raki dipped his head and stepped out in pace with the adult Ringtail.
Master Marlocke greeted his students at the door to his classroom, the middle-aged Jedi nodding politely as they entered and bowed to him. He noticed his new student, RakiJedi-KurraConnor, and nodded privately to himself. Introductions wouldn't take long.
The human walked to his usual position, not sitting just yet, his students each finding a convenient place where they could sit once he had. The Ka-Karur found a place in the middle of the room, a place where he could be seen and see his fellow students, whom he was taking cues from.
"We have a new student in the class today, Initiates," he explained. "RakiJedi-KurraConnor, please step forward so you can be seen."
"Yes, Master Marlocke." Raki dipped his slender, triangular head on his long, serpentine neck and walked forward from the class group to stand next to the human and half turned to look at the class while his body was on profile.
"He will be joining us, and we will be reviewing our last few lessons," Master Marlocke explained. "Given the results of the last tests, it would be a good idea anyways," he added with a bit of a chuckle, some of the students looking a little sheepish at the reminder. "You make go back to your place." He added to Raki when he realized that the youth wouldn't move without instructions.
"Yes, Master Marlocke." He nodded and carefully walked between his classmates to his position in the middle again.
"Now, take your places," he instructed his students, sitting down and preparing to meditate. "Whatever position is comfortable for you," he added, knowing that if Raki were to try and sit cross-legged it could be extremely painful. He was pleased to note that the hatchling Ka-Karur, while apparently a bit lacking in independent thought, was good at taking instructions as intended as his long legs disappeared under the large amount of crystalline fluff that covered his body.
"Now, calm yourselves, and try to find your center. What is outside of you is not important just now; search for the Force inside of you."
He watched his students in the Force, waiting for them to find their center and watching out for any that were having difficulties. He nodded slightly to himself when his newest student fell into the calmness of centered meditation with an instinctive ease. Whoever had trained him in the basics in Evidran had done well with his nature.
The Jedi slipped into his own center with practice, instinctive ease, keeping enough focus on the world around him to speak to his students and monitor them.
"From your center, try and look out over what is available to you," he told them. "All places, all times, are the same in the Force. What we need to do is pick one to focus on. Padawan Kemmet, your selection."
"The Ice Gardens, now," the Twi'lek answered easily.
"A good choice," the Jedi nodded slightly. "For those of you who have not been there, follow the Force as the class focuses on it, you will feel our attention shift to the proper place." To guarantee that they would, Master Marlocke reached out with his senses, 'leading' the way for the others with his Force presence.
There were those with difficulty, mostly those he knew would, and he gave them a bit of gentle help before paying attention to his newest student who was apparently struggling with the very concept of what he was being asked to do. A little closer examination revealed that the hatchling was torn between doing what he had been told to do and another Force-eddy that wanted his attention.
"*Focus on your first duty; then we'll see about inspecting those,*" Master Marlocke told him privately, noting the startled fluff of feathers as Raki's head snapped up to look at him. "*There's time. There is always time.*"
"*Yes, Master Marlocke.*" He thought back. While it didn't really qualify as telepathy, the Master heard it as Raki settled down against and settled back into a light meditation to follow the group to the blue-white beauty of a garden so alien he didn't even understand it. "*Crystal?*" The thought came, loud enough for most to hear.
"*Ice,*" the human informed him. "Everybody choose something to observe, well enough that you can reproduce it for me when you return to the here and now."
"*Reproduce?*" Raki caught his attention, unsure what the Master actually desired.
"*Drawing on a pad,*" Master Marlocke explained with a mental image when he realized that 'drawing' wasn't really in the hatchling's functional vocabulary. "*So that I can test your ability to recall what you see in your visions.*"
Raki nodded physically and scanned the area clumsily until he found a pond and frozen waterfall that he was fairly sure he could get his hands to recreate, at least well enough to make it understood. With his mind, he stalked around the small area, gathering details and determining the best place and angle to put in the drawing.
He had to say, it was very nice to be able to see this place through his mind, instead of actually being there. While it was beautiful, if everything around him was ice then it also had to be exceptionally cold.
"Return to the here and now, students," Master Marlocke informed them after a brief time to study. "Your pads will be near you; reproduce what you have chosen."
Raki slowly unfolded his upper body from the oval he'd created of himself and picked up the stylus next to him. He had to study it for a long moment before he figured out that it recorded where he pressed on it. He quickly went to work on reproducing with claw and stylus what he had chosen to study.
"Take your time," Master Marlocke informed them. "If you are having technical difficulties, let me know, I'll help you sort them out. When you are done, press the send button, and I will review your work."
Raki nodded absently, his attention mostly on trying to draw in two dimensions when his mind held in three. It was mostly a matter of holding his memory in a single place and time and doing his best to reproduce what was there. It was much more difficult that he expected, eventually drawing a rumble of frustration from the hatchling.
"*Do you need assistance?*" Master Marlocke asked him silently.
"*I can't make the picture match my memory.*" Raki muttered and looked up at his instructor, not too sure if this was a 'technical difficulty', a failing of his own or something else. "*It is recognizable, but not even close to accurate.*"
"*Show me what you remember,*" Master Marlocke said easily. "*Drawing does have its limitations, particularly when you aren't familiar with it.*"
Raki nodded and focused on his memory before reaching out to the human to show him. First the image he was trying to create, then the tour he'd taken with his mind, all in the perfect detail of a flawless memory.
"*You're doing fairly well,*" Master Marlocke said approvingly. "*Send what you have; you haven't had any drawing instruction, so it is natural for it to be difficult for you.*"
"*Understood, Master Marlocke.*" Raki said gratefully and pushed the send button.
"*You will receive instruction that will approve your ability over time,*" the Jedi told him understandingly. "*But this isn't a drawing class,*" he added with a mental chuckle, reviewing the work of his various students, mentally adjusting for their ability and occasionally going to double-check what they were looking at. "*Please remain after class.*"
"This is very good work," he told the class. "Anybody who wishes additional instruction, remain here. The rest of you are free to continue your practice elsewhere in the Temple. Just remember that I can tell if you're not studying when you're supposed to," he warned them with a chuckle.
"Yes, Master Marlocke." The group said in near-unison and began to file out of the room.
"I believe you wanted to check on some of your kin?" He asked Raki after the rest of the class was gone.
"Is that what those were, Master Marlocke?" He cocked his head slightly, still seated in the middle of the room. "Yes, I would."
"You can come closer if you would like," the Jedi said easily. "And I believe they were. I'm not entirely certain, but I know that at least one of the focal points was Sa'as-Coruscant."
Raki nodded and stood to move closer, easily settling next to the human instructor, his attention and gaze never leaving him even as his mind reviewed what he was sensing when class began.
"Settle in again and find your center, find the Moment," Master Marlocke told him. "The place you were before, when you felt them calling."
Raki nodded and slipped into the Moment first, then worked his way back with more difficulty.
Master Marlocke watched, physically and in the Force, rather amazed at how easily this one found the Moment. There was no real skill yet, but it was a talent that would serve him well in the years to come. He felt the instant the connection was made between hatchling and kin. Those little motes were his kin, the three in the area at the time. None were asking for him directly, but the Ka-Karur were a highly social species and sought each other out. This was simply an extension of that instinct.
"*I see them.*" Raki murmured, actually surprised as he realized that he was following them where they had been to where they were now.
"*Very good,*" Master Marlocke nodded. "*Do you want to watch them, or perhaps to try and study something other than looking at a place?*"
"*I would like to learn something new, Master Marloche.*" Raki grinned eagerly.
"*Well, to be polite, pull yourself back from viewing your kin. Then tell me what it is that I was doing twelve hours ago.*"
Raki nodded and drew back to himself. He paused, trying to figure out how best to do what he'd been asked to, and settled on starting with 'now' and following his instructor back in time, since he could have been off world that long ago.
"*A good way to start,*" Master Marlocke nodded. "*However, there is an easier way. In the Force, time and space are no different. You don't need to follow me back; just look for that time-place.*"
The statement earned him a bit of a dubious look; it didn't answer how to find the target when you didn't even know for sure what world to look on, but he went back to that 'then' in a single thought-motion and focused on the Force-aura of the Master.
It wasn't easy... mostly because the idea of tracking without a trail was an utterly foreign idea. Still, he tried, searching that time/ place for what he needed. With some work he started to get the impressions that were telling him what he needed to know. In a room... alone... serene....
He couldn't see what the human was doing, and that was frustrating. A frustration that was focused on the hunt, to find the place his prey was and see what he needed.
"*Calm yourself,*" Master Marlocke reassured him. "*This isn't something that's easy to do, or to understand. It probably won't be as clear as when you viewed the Ice Garden.*"
Raki nodded, though he wasn't aware of it, and tried to comply. For a long moment he paused his hunt, settling his mind and emotions. When he felt calm, he began again, slowly tracking the elusive 'scent' of his quarry's aura. A long series of rooms, some used and some not. One eventually stood out and he focused on moving inside it to view the human sitting cross-legged.
"*What are you seeing, Initiate?*" Master Marlocke asked, confident that he had found the time in question.
"*You are sitting in a room in the third tower, by yourself.*" He offered a mental map of the Temple with the location in question marked. "*You are very calm.*"
"*I was,*" Master Marlocke corrected him. "*Remember, you are looking at a point in the past. It is all the same to the Force, but not to those you might have to describe what you are seeing to. Can you put a word to what I was doing?*"
"*No, Master Marlocke.*"
"*That is meditation, for me,*" the human explained. "*It is a process by which a Jedi finds the Moment, finds their center, and often loses themselves in the Force for a time.*"
Raki nodded. Understanding would come in time. For now he simply attached the word and description to what he had sensed and drew himself back to the here and now of his body.
"A very good start," Master Marlocke told him, standing up and helping the Raptor to his feet. "You should get something to eat, and then go rest for a while. What you did is generally very stressful the first time, physically and mentally."
"Yes, Master Marlocke." Raki nodded as his eyes focused fully on the here and now physical world. "Thank you." He added before his legs fell out from under him with the first step, sending him sprawling on the floor with a surprised, indignant rawk.
"And then there's still that," the blonde human smiled, helping him up again and watched as he tested his legs a little more carefully. "Will you need help to return to your quarters?"
"I think I will be fine, Master Marlocke." Raki decided cautiously after a couple test steps. "I was distracted."
"Go on then," he said easily. "Force be with you, Raki."
The First Jedi 4: Morning Tours
38 KB, Story is Complete, Series is in Progress
Written October 31, 2005 by Rauhnee Ranshanka and Karl Wolfemann
Setting: Star Wars (Furry)
Primary Races: Archaeopterix, Ka-Karur (Night Raptor), Tiss'shar, Vor
Contents: Furry. Gen.
Blurb: Raki's first day includes a little bonding with his roommates and his first formal lesson in Far Seeing.
Disclaimer: All things taken directly from the sources listed under 'Fandoms' belong to the owners of those shows. No harm is intended and we're definitely not making any money. Now, the things we created are ours, and if you see 'Non-FanFic' up there, it's probably all ours.
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