The First Jedi 5:
Growing Hunger

by Fur and Fantasy
full contents and notes located at the bottom of the file

"That is all for today. You are dismissed." Knight Shalome bowed slightly to her class of twenty-three students in level 1 physics.

"Hungry?" Tekika asked as Raki stood up from the small, short table that served as his desk so he could 'sit' by simply folding his legs under him instead of trying to deal with a chair.

"Always." The young Ka-Karur clicked as she laughed with him.

"You'd think they didn't feed you around here," Tekika laughed as they left with the rest of the class. "You already eat more than the rest of us combined, and now you're making it more often?"

"You noticed me getting up to eat at night?" He asked, a bit embarrassed that he'd woken up his roommates.

"I sleep light," she chuckled.

"I guess so." Raki murmured as they walked. "Besides, they serve good food here."

"True," she nodded. "Though you should know best of all of us," she added teasingly.

"I've got a lot of catching up to do in sampling the galaxy's offerings." He almost managed not to ruin his monotone delivery with a clicking giggle as they entered the lift with some of the other students. One of them, a Fox a couple years older than they were, chuckled as he leaned back against the back wall of the lift.

"You're gonna have to visit Alderaan sometime," he smiled.

"Your homeworld, Kenreth?" Raki guessed.

"Yeah," the Fox nodded. "It's a great place, really... peaceful and calm, and the food's great."

"It really is the way it is described to tourists?" Raki perked up, his full height exceeding the Fox's by several inches. "It's not like my homeworld at all. Evidran is too alive to be peaceful. Not much variety in the food either."

"Well, as far as I know it is," Kenreth said, standing up straight as the lift slowed. "Even the Selonians get along with everybody else, most of the time. Guess without having to worry about everything places like Coruscant have to deal with, not too much else to do but figure out how to cook things," he chuckled.

"You two are lucky," Tekika observed as they left the lift. "I don't even remember home, really."

"You do not miss it then." Raki told her quietly. "It is great here, but it is not as ... alive ... as Evidran. I doubt any world is that has many people."

"Not once they build all over it," Kenreth agreed. "Something about cities, I think ... almost like they choke out what should be there. So you're a little homesick too?" He asked Raki knowingly.

"Sometimes," the Ka-Karur nodded. "I like it here, but I like Evidran and being with my own people too."

"I know the feeling," the Fox agreed as they got in line for a meal. "Some days it's great to be here, but sometimes I almost wish my family hadn't decided to send me... or that they'd agreed sooner, like your folks did, Tekika."

"I do not think a Ka-Karur will ever have that advantage." Raki mused. "Not unless the Jedi can figure out if they want one of us with a day or two of being laid. I knew every bit of my flock's territory and all the people there before the first month was over."

"How'd you manage that?" Kenreth asked, looking over at Raki with a startled expression.

"Jedi call it far seeing. As soon as enough of me formed in the egg to have some kind of consciousness, I began to reach out and explore. A perfect memory helped too. I only have to see or hear or experience something once to know it forever."

"That's... weird," Kenreth said, rather more bluntly than he'd wanted to. "Is that normal for your people?"

"For those that can," he nodded, not put off by the bluntness he was quite used too at this point. "Not all Ka-Karur are strong enough in the Force to manage. We are all curious though, and explore what we can when we can."

"Most of us can't start doing things like that for years," Tekika giggled. "But Raki here's always managing things younger than anybody has a right to," she teased lightly, selecting some fruit for her plate.

"Just because I am seven months old and taking classes for seven year olds does not mean much." Raki tried to sound indignant and failed miserably as he piled a second steak onto his plate and then added a large scoop of thick, meaty gravy to it and the mashed sweet roots next to it.

"If that wasn't normal for your people, I'd be worried," Kenreth chuckled, taking his own meal, smaller by far than Raki's. "Eating for the day?" He asked the Ka-Karur as he added another helping of meat to his plate.

"One of four meals, and I am still always hungry." Raki sort of shrugged. "I do not think I will eat like this as an adult."

"As fast as he's growing, we've stopped being surprised by how much he eats," Tekika said. "I figure it's just how he gets away with being as big as he is and not even being a year old."

"You should have seen us grow in the first six months." Raki clicked in amusement. "We weigh about ten pounds when we hatch."

"Bet you really kept your folks running," Kenreth chuckled as they headed towards a seat. "Especially if they had to hunt for it all."

"The whole flock hunts, but that is part of the reason only a few females breed each time. Ten or so hatchlings is an effort for a flock of thirty to feed, that flock trying to feed sixty hatchlings or more would be nearly impossible."

"I'll bet," Kenreth said, shaking his head. "There's something to be said for supermarkets."

"It helps keep the population under control though." Raki pointed out and dug into his meal with a relish. "Hard to over breed when the food supply keeps things in check."

"He's got a point there," Tekika nodded. "They've got a better grasp on what Master Kella's been trying to explain for years."

"Even after having to rebuild our population from four hundred and sixty one only seventy-nine years ago." Raki nodded. "With Jedi help with food, we did maximize our numbers for a couple decades, but it is very stressful to have a handful of adults trying to raise three times as many hatchlings. Even more so when it is five times more often than they are used to."

"And my Mom used to complain about having to take care of twins," Kenreth chuckled as he ate. "'Course, I think it was just her back then."

"She had no kin to help?" Raki looked over curiously.

"We live more spread out," Kenreth explained. "She moved to Alderaan after she married Father, and the rest of her family stayed on Corellia. My Father's family helped, I'm sure, but she didn't have any hired help like she did later on."

"How many siblings do you have?" Raki paused for a moment between bites.

"Twin brother, a younger sister... don't think there are any more, but somebody might have been born since I came here."

"That is not so many." Raki nodded as he finished his meal not long after the other two. "Excuse me, Kenreth. It is time for me to meditate."

"I should get going too," the Fox nodded, standing up with his tray. "I've got a study session to attend. See the two of you around," he said.

"See you around, Kenreth," Tekika nodded, staying to finish her meal before her next class.

"Greetings, RakiJedi-KurraConnor." Sa'as-Coruscant dipped her head slightly in greeting to the seven and a half month old. "How are you feeling?"

"Greetings, Sa'as-Coruscant," Raki said, dipping his own head. "I am feeling well. Hungry, but I'm used to that."

"When did you eat last?" The crystalline feather crest on her head perked up slightly.

"Three hours," Raki said easily. "Lunch is usually in three more hours," he explained.

"Then let's begin the physical exam. We will see if you are eating enough at the end." She decided, already suspected that he was under-eating. "Try to hold a push-up."

The young Ka-Karur did as he was told, his body more stable now than it had been the last time he'd done this. Still, his slender arms were weak enough and his powerful hips were not designed for this. It wasn't particularly easy to do, even more so after she started to run her hands along his body.

"Good. Stand up now." She nodded. "Have you been taking your supplements?"

"Yes, Sa'as-Coruscant." He nodded seriously. "One packet mixed in with first meal each day."

"I want you to increase it by half. Your feathers are not coming in very well."

"Yes, Sa'as-Coruscant," he nodded. "Is there something more I should do to care for them?"

"I can tell you bathe and preen regularly. It seems to be more a lack in your diet than your care." She considered the handful of nearly adult feathers along his spine and the fluff that covered the rest of his body. "If it has not improved by next month, we will schedule a trip to Evidran for you to see if being where we evolved helps. How has your balance been? Any difficulties in class or remembering things?"

"No, Sa'as-Coruscant," he said easily. "My memory is perfect, and my classes are not difficult so far. My balance is improving, though I still manage to trip over my feet sometimes."

"Not unusual, though we do want to watch that. We are not sure how much of our ability is due to our diet and how much of it is growing up on Evidran and within it's Force fields." She nodded. "Now, why don't we get something to eat and you can show me how much you eat."

"All right," he nodded, fluffing his feathers slightly. "It's this way," he explained, turning to lead the older Ka-Karur to the cafeteria.

"How are you doing, otherwise?" She asked as they walked.

"Well," he said easily. "It is not Evidran, but it is nice here. The gardens are a lot like home, without anything trying to eat me," he chuckled.

"Quite true." She nodded. "You are getting along with your roommates and classmates?"

"Quite well," Raki clicked, nodding his head. "They're all quite nice. Tanlor and I usually spend most of our free time out play-hunting."

"That is excellent." Sa'as-Coruscant clicked in true approval as the lift transported them to the nearest cafeteria. "It is the best exercise possible for your growing body and your senses."

"And it's fun," he grinned. "Not much to hunt, but what there is isn't easy to catch."

"At your age, it shouldn't be." She chuckled lightly. "Perhaps after we eat, I'll show you what an adult can do."

"Hunting butterflies?" Raki asked with a chuckle of his own for the mental image.

"If that is what is here," she nodded with a click of amusement of her own. "Hunting is hunting, even butterflies."

"It just seems... weird," Raki clicked as they walked into the cafeteria; the larger Ka-Karur earning many curious and surprised looks from various Initiates and better concealed looks from the Knights and Masters scattered about.

"Just put together a normal meal." She instructed him evenly as she picked out a token meal for herself.

"Yes, Sa'as-Coruscant," he nodded, selecting his usual rich, protein heavy meal, easily half-again larger than those being eaten by most of the Knights.

"A suitable size," she nodded to herself. "How many times do you eat in a day?"

"Four, Sa'as-Coruscant."

"You are eating light then," she told him very seriously. "At your age, you should consume nearly twenty percent of your body weight a day. Eat whenever you are hungry."

"That's quite a bit more," Raki mused, blinking as he sat down to eat. It meant doubling his number of meals, if not more.

It did explain why he was always hungry though.

"Yes, it is." She agreed and nibbled on her fried meat fingerlings. "As you mature, you needs, and your appetite, will decrease. As an adult, you will only need one meal that size in a day, or a suitably larger one once a week or so, assuming normal actively."

"This size?" He asked, wanting to be clear on it. "Could this also explain the feathers?"

"Yes, and to an extent. It likely explains your slightly smaller size than I expected." She nodded and considered him. "I still want you to increase the supplements. I will be back in two weeks to check on you. That will be long enough to see if the extra food and supplements catch you up."

"Yes, Sa'as-Coruscant," he nodded easily, starting to eat. "I hope it does; I'll need to get up to size for some of my next classes."

"You are already bigger than many species' adult." She chuckled. "Full grown, you will be bigger than most."

"There's still the Drakon," Raki chuckled. "Always someone, something bigger. But they want me to be healthy for the lightsaber training."

"You will be, even if it takes a trip back to Evidran to ensure it. We know once you are fully grown and feathered, we survive fine."

"I hope it works out here, Sa'as-Coruscant," he said sincerely. "For others who come after me, at least."

"We will figure it out, RakiJedi-KurraConnor." She crooned gently.

The First Jedi 5: Growing Hunger


14 KB, Story is Complete, Series is in Progress
Written November 6, 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: Even though he is eating much more than most, Raki is always hungry. It is not until his third twice-monthly visit with the Ka-Karur healer on Coruscant that they start to figure out why.

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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