The First Jedi 3:
The Jedi Temple
by Fur and Fantasy
full contents and notes located at the bottom of the file
The freshly christened RakiJedi-KurraConnor let out a small sound of relief when Master B'lyn led him away from the raucous party celebrating his acceptance into the Jedi Order. In a way, he knew it was a serious honor to bear the name, but being known as 'First-Jedi-Honors-Connor' was not as satisfying as he thought it would be. It said nothing about him. It spoke of his race, the past and his future, but he couldn't think of looking forward to earning a new name more.
Something that only he would bear, not that was waiting for whatever was hatched strong enough to bear it.
"So, think you're ready to go?" Master B'lyn asked him as they made their way towards the tall Temple Spire that now dominated the Jedi Gorge.
"Yes, Master B'lyn." He nodded politely. "They are all so excited about this."
"They've been waiting for almost a hundred years for somebody to be a strong enough sensitive to join the Order.... I've tried to explain that it isn't that important, but it's a point of pride for them, I think," B'lyn explained.
"A Jedi gave his life so we could live." RakiJedi-KurraConnor told her very seriously. "Now we can finally give a life back to the Jedi for him."
"If it makes you feel any better, you won't be the center of everybody's attention quite as much once you're on Coruscant. Not once they've gotten used to you."
"Good," he chirped with a bit of relief, looking up at her happily. "I want to learn."
"Oh, you'll do plenty of that," she chuckled. "Probably learn more about more things than you've ever imagined. And not all of it about the Force."
"Languages, fighting, cultures, peace-keeping ... Master Istala told me some of the things I would be learning."
"And various forms of technology ... all manner of different things are possible, really, depending on what you focus on," B'lyn smiled. "And your classes will probably be a bit more focused now." As they entered the Temple, the Wolf he had mentioned approached them.
"Well, I understand you're about ready to go to Coruscant," she smiled, giving both he and B'lyn a polite bow.
"Yes, Master Istala." RakiJedi-KurraConnor bowed in return. "I am looking forward to seeing the Temple there."
"If you're as good a student for them as you have been for me, I'm sure you'll do well," she smiled. "Force be with you, RakiJedi-KurraConnor," she said, trying not to stumble over the fairly cumbersome name.
"You might consider a shortened form of that," B'lyn said apologetically as they continued towards the docking bay and the fully-stocked ship that would take them to Coruscant, along with a shipment of crystals and harvested foodstuffs. "It's a bit of a mouthful."
"I will think on it, Masters." He dipped his head.
"If nothing else, just don't be offended if anybody comes up with a nickname for you," B'lyn smiled, nodding to the Padawan in charge of making sure everything was loaded. "It's common amongst the Initiates, usually a friendly thing."
"I will remember, Master B'lyn." He looked at her and nodded seriously. "I expect to have several names in my life."
"I wouldn't be at all surprised if you did," she smiled as they boarded the ship. "You have the spirit to earn them. Just don't keep the administrators too busy updating your records," she winked.
"I will not, Master B'lyn." He said seriously, though he did kind of catch the joke. "How long a journey is it to Coruscant?"
"About five days, on this ship," she explained. "Barring something coming up. We'll spend part of the time helping you prepare to meet the Council, but you'll have most of it to yourself."
"I understand, Master B'lyn." He dipped his head. "When will we prepare for the meeting?"
"We could start now, if you'd like," B'lyn offered easily. "Just as soon as we're into hyperspace."
"Yes, Master B'lyn." He grinned up at her.
["Oh wow."] RakiJedi-KurraConnor breathed as he looked down on Coruscant's world-city and the gleaming white spires of the Jedi Temple that glowed with the energy and life of their inhabitants.
Between his Force sensitivity and his natural ability to see things most species couldn't, it was breathtaking to say the least... though he could sense an undercurrent of something not quite right.
"It is impressive, isn't it?" B'lyn asked with a smile. "You'll get used to it fairly soon, I'm sure. Speaks-with-Jedi had adjusted before the year was out."
"Yes, Master B'lyn. What is wrong? Something is out of balance there." He asked without taking his gaze off the gleaming spires.
"The Temple?" She asked, looking to see what it was he was talking about. "Ah. What you're seeing is the undercurrent of Coruscant. Unfortunately, the Jedi can't fix every problem. One of the drawbacks of modern civilization is that there are often people who can't afford to live as well as they should, or as well as they want to at any rate. There's a sort of desperation that goes along with poverty that blends in with the background 'noise' of the Force. That's what you're sensing here."
"Oh." He nodded slightly. "It is very different from home. Why is the bad feeling so much stronger there?" He pointed to the government sector so nearby the Jedi Temple.
"There are some members of the Republic's government who are less than honest in their dealings," B'lyn explained. "Not necessarily corrupt, but what they do often results in things happening that probably shouldn't. We do our best to stop them, but there's only so much that can be done, particularly when what they do isn't quite illegal."
"Too many people to take care of?" He finally looked at her. "Leaders don't see them anymore?"
"Something like that," she nodded. "They see some of them, but not all. Some leaders are better, but there are many who don't pay enough attention to what is happening at the bottom, because they're busy staying on the top."
"Why don't they spread out, or stop breeding?" He was now focused completely on the elder Twi'lek.
"They do spread out sometimes, and most species would probably rebel if they were told not to breed," she explained as the ship came in for the final approach to the Temple. "Unfortunately, when you're already spread out across most of the known galaxy, you start to run out of places that are suitable."
"Why would they rebel?" RakiJedi-KurraConnor didn't even blink, his voice even and not incriminating in his confusion. "Don't they care about survival?"
"They do, and some races do control their breeding like the Ka-Karur. But our people aren't organized in flocks; individual families are very important to most of our races. If you tell them not to breed, then their families might never continue. They find other ways to support their numbers ... not always good ones, but they find ways."
He nodded slightly and focused back on the vision of light and energy that was the Jedi Temple. "It is very different here."
"Very true," B'lyn murmured, realizing not for the first time that she'd spent more time on Evidran Three than she had on Coruscant, in the past few decades. "But it has its good points too," she reassured him as the ship stopped, and they started making their way towards the landing ramp.
"If it did not, the Jedi would not have their gathering ground here." He agreed with as close as he could come to a correlation. Hatching ground felt more accurate, but didn't seem quite right. "There is much good power here. Like the Valley Temple."
"Exactly," B'lyn nodded with a smile. "We actually modeled it after the Temple Spire, though it's not nearly as impressive inside."
"No Council." He nodded seriously. "No great government or galaxy to impress. Just Ka-Karur."
"And we didn't really have the resources to build some of what we have in here," B'lyn chuckled as they reached the landing ramp and walked down to the landing platform. "The Council will be expecting us, so we'll just go to the waiting chamber. Mostly lifts," she chuckled, remembering well Speaks-with-Jedi's first reaction to them decades ago.
"I understand." He nodded and followed her, understanding now why there had been so many rides in the one the Valley Temple. "They are not bad."
"No, they're not," she said easily. "But every other Ka-Karur who's visited here has ended up startled by them," she chuckled.
"Like I did, the first time." He dipped his head in embarrassment. "It is not natural to move like that."
"It's why we made sure to build stairs in the Valley Temple," she chuckled. "But frankly, climbing to the top of the Temple Spire on stairs would be like climbing a mountain."
She could almost hear his first, unspoken, response of 'so what?' and had to give the six month old credit for not saying it. There were full Padawans that hadn't managed to learn that lesson yet.
"Here we are," she said, stopping at a lift and waiting for the lift to arrive. Fortunately, it didn't take too long, a droid wheeling a cart out to collect something for one of the laboratories from the ship.
"It is incredible." RakiJedi-KurraConnor breathed in deeply of the power-drenched air and the harmony that resonated here so strongly.
The two of them boarded the lift, taking it up the half-kilometer or so left to reach the waiting area outside the Council chambers. Once again his attention was drawn outside to the expanse of city that he could only correlate to the expanse of forests back home. His world was green; this one was silvery-white.
"The view is incredible." He whispered, ignoring the splotches of dark and ugly that his Force-senses picked up in variation in the government sector. "What are the other areas around?" He asked with a motion to spots not so Dark.
"Outside the Temple and the government sector?" She asked him, judging where it was he was motioning to. "A lot of different places. The Coruscant Opera House and Skydome Botanical Gardens are the largest buildings," she explained, indicating the buildings in question.
"Not every area is named?" He looked over at her.
"Not all of them," she said, catching on to what he meant. "Or more accurately, I haven't got a clue what all of them are named anymore," she chuckled. "Names will change as people move in or out, as different companies run different areas, that sort of thing."
"Oh," he nodded. While he didn't quite completely understand, what she said was filed away and accepted as the truth.
"They are ready to see us now." B'lyn touched his shoulder lightly after Master Tarasix Archicrani touched her mind lightly.
"I am ready, Master B'lyn." He dipped his head slightly and followed her into the lift that would take them into the Council Chamber itself.
The door opened for them, and they advanced to the middle of the room, surrounded by the twelve Councilors as they both bowed respectfully.
"It is a pleasure to see you again, Master B'lyn," Master Layaana said, the blue-skinned Twi'lek bowing her head respectfully to her former Master.
"A pleasure to be back, Councilors," B'lyn said easily. "Particularly under these circumstances."
"Yes, it is a fine day when a Ka-Karur finally stands before us for acceptance into the Order." Master Tarasix Archicrani inclined her head to them. The finely boned pink and blue Archaeopteryx was nearly glowing with the Light of her pleasure and power. "Shall we deal with the formalities?"
"I see no reason not to," Master Therin said easily, the black-furred Fox opening up a small computer. "Though it would be good to have a name to call our new initiate by," he chuckled.
"I am RakiJedi-KurraConnor." He said with a formal dignity befitting the situation. "It means First-Jedi-Honors-Connor. Raki would be acceptable in informal situations."
"Very well," the Fox nodded, taking down the information. "I see that your testing on Evidran was thorough enough to accept in lieu of testing here, so we won't worry about that. Do you have any questions for the Council?"
"No, Master Therin." He answered politely.
"I do have a question, for Master B'lyn," Master Gabbard, a lean human whose hair was already white with age said. "Why did you wait so long before bringing him to us?"
"Night Raptors mature quickly, Master Gabbard," B'lyn said easily. "He is about six months old now, no more. For the first six months, they're barely allowed out of the hatching caves, let alone off-planet; they're too young to really move about particularly well."
"My feathers have still not fully grown in." Raki added helpfully, fluffing the somewhat hardened layer.
"Very well," the human nodded easily. "In that case, barring objections, I believe you can be brought into the Order as a full Initiate," he said, glancing around at the Council, sure there would be none.
"Good." Master Archicrani nodded. "Welcome to the Order, Initiate RakiJedi-KurraConnor."
"Thank you, Master Archicrani." He bowed deeply to her.
"Knight Thorrson will take you to the crèche," the Archaeopteryx said, indicating an adult Trandoshan, the Monitor-like lizard wearing Jedi robes as he stepped out of a corner and bowed politely to the new recruit.
"Thank you, Master Archicrani." He bowed a second time and turned to bow to the Knight.
"Follow me," Thorrson said easily, padding off. Both their clawed feet clicking lightly on the marble floor as he led RakiJedi-KurraConnor back out of the Council Chamber, the young Ka-Karur walking behind him in polite silence.
"Would you like me to answer any questions on the way?" The Knight asked as they boarded the lift, traveling rapidly towards ground level.
"I can not think of anything right know, Knight Thorrson." Raki shook his head a bit. "Master B'lyn made sure that the crèche has the supplies needed for me to grow up healthy, that I would be with Initiates old enough to understand that touching me can hurt if they aren't careful, that I would see and learn from other Ka-Karur from time to time when I am old enough to learn how to use my feathers and such and that I shouldn't hunt things here without getting permission first."
"You know the basics then," the Trandoshan nodded. "You will also be in an area that's warm enough to be comfortable for you; over time, we'll show you the way to the Illiquar Gardens and some of the other tropical gardens."
"I look forward too it, Knight Thorrson. It is a bit cool here."
"You'll get used to it, over time," he chuckled. "Fortunately, the WeatherNet keeps things reasonably comfortable through most of the world. I've had to visit more than one truly cold world, and it's not particularly pleasant when you're native to a warmer one."
"Even less pleasant when you do not generate your own body heat." Raki nodded.
"Yes," the Trandoshan nodded. "On the plus side they managed to develop something that made it more tolerable." They walked through the wide, open spaces of Coruscant to another spire, taking a lift up to a comfortably warm, humid floor as Raki checked out everything with his full senses.
"Are you going to prefer sand, or some sort of plant matter for your bed?" Knight Thorsson asked.
"Sand, Knight Thorsson." He answered politely.
"We expected as much," he nodded. "We have several other Initiates who also use nests, rather than beds, so you'll be rooming with some of them. I hope you enjoy your time with the crèche."
"I do as well, Knight Thorsson." He dipped his head slightly as the snake-bodied Knight keyed in the pass code.
The two of them entered the room, the scent of plants and earth noticeable and comforting as Raki was led back towards the fifth room down the hall.
"This is your room," the Trandoshan explained. "Meals are available at any time, but we recommend shortly after you and your roommates wake up, then every six hours after that. Your class schedule will be arranged over the next few days, once we can assess your progress so far. Now, allow me to introduce your roommates," he said as the door opened.
"Hi Knight Thorsson." A fledgling Archaeopteryx with blue, pink and dark green tints in her fluff as she looked up at the pair so much taller than herself.
"Hello Initiate Tekika Archicrani," the Trandoshan said easily, nodding his head towards her. "This is Initiate RakiJedi-KurraConnor," he explained, indicating the young Ka-Karur. "Raki for short," he added. "Where are the others?"
"Wiliran is meditating, and Tanlor is around somewhere, Knight Thorsson." She said easily. "Welcome Raki. You have the new sandbox?"
"Yes," he nodded and stepped into the room a bit, sniffing around as he fluffed his stiff feathers to draw the warm, moist air into his undercoat and against his skin. "Thank you, Tekika."
"I'll leave you to get adjusted," Knight Thorsson said easily. "Force be with you, Raki, Tekika. If your roommates aren't back by sundown, send word, we'll double-check where they are." The Trandoshan stepped back out of the room, the door sliding shut just behind his heavily built body before a dark green Saurian much like Raki, though a bit more vertical, popped his head out from behind a bookshelf.
"Hello," he said, dark-red, mask-like markings on his face as he stepped out from his hiding place. "I'm Uul-Tan-Lor," he said. "But you can call me Tanlor." He cocked his head slightly as he took in the newcomer and found a very similar expression gazing back at him as the Ka-Karur assessed this creature similar to a humanoid non-feathered version of himself.
"Hello, Tanlor." Raki chirped pleasantly as they watched each other, their eyes on level. "How close to full-grown are you?"
"About half," Tanlor said, flexing his hands, the fingers shorter and thicker than Raki's. "My arms are growing better now. You're not a Tiss'shar, are you?" He observed.
"No," he shook his head. "I'm a Ka-Karur, the first to be accepted into the Order." Tension rippled across his body as he caught motion outside the window, then relaxed quickly at the small, skin-winged humanoid Saurian that landed on the thick ledge. "Are you Wiliran?"
"Yep," the Vor nodded as she slipped in through the window, opening it from the outside. "I had a feeling somebody new was here, so I thought I'd come up and say hi."
"Hello," Raki chirped pleasantly to her. "I am RakiJedi-KurraConnor, but Raki will do."
"Good to meet you, Raki," she chirped back. "I'm Wilira, but most people call me Willie."
"So how old are you?" Tekika asked, trying to gauge his feather growth and physical growth.
"Six months," Raki nodded to her. "Just old enough to leave the hatching grounds."
"You grow fast," the two Saurians observed almost as one, Willie climbing in through the window and settling into a small nest nearby.
"How much bigger will you probably get?" Tanlor asked, sitting down in the older of the two sand-beds.
"Three time as heavy and half again as tall over five years. The big growth spurt is over now. A lot more energy will be spent developing my feathers for a while."
"You get more of them, or just brighter?" Tanlor asked him, most fascinated by the crystalline covering on his new roommate that was so different from anything he'd seen before.
"Harder and sharper," Willie answered. "I remember getting a lecture about them when Speaks-with-Jedi was visiting once."
"And more, and longer." Raki added with a nod to her. "It's part of why I'm with older Initiates. It's too dangerous for me to still be learning about my feathers around those that can not yet grasp 'do not touch'."
"Explains why you're in this wing too," Tanlor nodded. "This whole floor has Initiates who use nests instead of beds. Probably rip one up if you were in with the others."
"Most likely," Raki nodded and took a long moment to make a hollow for himself in his sandy bed. "It's nice and warm here too." He settled down with a contented chirping sigh. "It's not that cold out there, but it's so nice here."
"Definitely nicer in here," Willie agreed. "It can get pretty chilly when you're out around the top of the Spires, no matter how warm it is on the ground."
"I do not doubt it." Raki nodded. "It must be amazing to see things from the air like that."
"It is," she nodded, parting her long mouth in a grin. "If you can get up on top of the Temple Spire, you can see forever. They don't like it when I get up there, but it's a great place to meditate when it's not too windy."
"I bet; no one even close." Raki clicked happily. "Knight Thorsson mentioned there are tropical gardens here." He glanced around for confirmation.
"The Illiquar," Tanlor nodded easily. "Want me to show you the way?" He offered. "Just have to remember not to hunt anybody down there, especially not if they look like a lion-tailed rabbit with color-changing fur."
"Because that's a Kushiban," Raki nodded with an amused click. "I got a long lecture about that one, and the 'do not hunt' before I came. Master B'lyn said that if I ask first, some might be willing to let me play-hunt for practice, but to always ask first." He added very seriously. "I would very much like to know the way to the Illiquar."
"I got the 'picked up and dangled until I apologized' version of the lecture," Tanlor admitted sheepishly. "But come on, I'll show you the way," he said, standing from his sandy nest and stepping towards the door.
"I bet you will never forget it, though." Raki stood and happily padded after his featherless companion.
"Nope," the Tiss'shar chuckled slightly as they started down. "On the plus side, they don't have sensitive butterflies yet, so those we can still chase... I've tried going after the birds once in a while, but just to practice."
"Sensitive butterflies?" Raki's eyes went wide. "That is an idea I hope never comes true. Nothing would be safe to chase anymore."
"No kidding," Tanlor chuckled, shaking his head as they got on board the lift and started down. "The way I see it though, it's usually safe to chase it if it's smaller than a Kushiban. Usually."
"It would be hard to get a brain big enough to be smart in a head any smaller. It's still hard to think of something with a head that small being that smart." Raki shook his head. "I'm looking forward to meeting one, though. I can't think of a person much more different to a Ka-Karur than that."
"Master Vorok," Tanlor said immediately, shaking his head. "He is very, very different. Nice, but different. You'll probably meet him during your telepathy training."
"More different than a telekinetic rabbit?" Raki regarded him dubiously.
"It's hard to explain what he's like, but a lot more different," Tanlor nodded as the lift opened into open yards of the Temple. "At least the Kushiban look like animals."
"Okay, anything that doesn't look like an animal is up there on the weird scale." Raki shook his head. "I get the feeling that Master B'lyn left a lot out when she taught me about the Temple and races."
"Did she warn you about the Drakon?" Tanlor asked him, glancing over as they made their way to the Illiquar Gardens.
"Yes," he shuddered slightly. "That will take a while to get used to. Creatures like that eat people on Evidran."
"Another race?" Tanlor asked him. "Or just big pred's?"
"Very big flying predators." Raki explained as they continued through the cooler halls of the main Temple areas. "One of the more dangerous things to us."
"I'll bet," the Tiss'shar nodded. "On the plus side, nothing around the Temple's going to try and eat us, and if we're somewhere something will, then we're in bigger trouble."
"At least for a few more years." Raki nodded and watched the keycode for the garden as it was typed in. "When we're Padawans and not Initiates." He took a deep breath of the jungle's humid warmth he'd left behind days ago. "This is nice." He crooned as the door shut behind them and he took everything in.
"Yeah, it is," Tanlor agreed with a deep breath of his own and a bit of a sigh. "A lot more like home."
"Definitely." He murmured, then froze at a bit of movement, the hunting instincts taking over and following the motion until it was identified as a small fluttering insect. "First target." He grinned and ran after the erratic movement.
"Definitely a good call," Tanlor grinned, taking off after his new friend. It wasn't long before he caught Raki loose his balance slightly, then again badly enough to tumble sideways, landing with a heavy thump in the rich soil and ground cover.
Concerned, he picked up the pace, hurrying to his side.
"Are you okay?" The Tiss'shar asked Raki, helping him up after a bit of a fall.
"Yes," he nodded, ducking his head a bit in embarrassment. "I'm just still learning how to move. It's only been a week since I was old enough to leave the hatching grounds. My legs aren't quite strong enough all the time yet."
"It's okay," Tanlor chuckled slightly, ducking his own head. "You should see me in lightsaber training, with my hands changing."
"Why do they change?" Raki cocked his head as he fluffed his still-soft feathers out.
"They're more like yours when we're younger, they don't develop as much for the first few years," Tanlor explained. "We need to run before we fight, I think is how they explained it."
"Makes sense to me," he nodded easily, then grinned. "Let's go find another butterfly."
"I know where we can find some of the big ones," Tanlor grinned, turning and leading the way as they went to enjoy themselves.
The First Jedi 3: The Jedi Temple
26 KB, Story is Complete, Series is in Progress
Written October 24, 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: RakiJedi-KurraConnor, the first Ka-Karur to enter Jedi training, and his introduction to the Temple and his roommates is an education all on it's own.
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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