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Thread: The Yellow Blossom

  1. #1

    Closed The Yellow Blossom

    The Melen namana orchard spanned 100 acres west of the Telaan Valley. It was isolated enough that the orchard ran itself but not too far away from Salis D'aar that a trip couldn't be made within the day if supplies were needed. Most of the transportation ran in and out of the family estate on a timely schedule that such trips were rare baring an emergency or for personal endeavors. Droids maintained the orchards and upkeep on the equipment and mansion with two dozen hired hands on a rotating seasonal schedule. Currently the crop was ripe for the pickings and the fields bustled with droid, human, and bith activity.

    Mariyan Melen casually strolled down a row of namana trees, glancing at the medium sized farming droids that hovered over the orchard. They were rectangular with a taller front which held sensor arrays that could assess ripeness of the fruit. Four extendable arms swiveled to and fro with a triad of gentle pincers at the end to efficiently pluck the namama fruit then carefully place them into an attached basket. Once enough were picked, they flew to the processing facility three kilometers away where they were inspected, washed, and labeled. Their final destinations were distilleries, bakeries, candy factories, and for exporting offworld.

    It was a lucrative business that the Melens enjoyed - for the most part. Her daughter's mood ebbed and flowed like the waves of the Anduian Sea.

    For now she enjoyed the beautiful day, admiring the tall trunks of the pale yellow trees as the whir of the pincers moved about their business. One particular low hanging branch she plucked a particular beautiful yellow and orange blossom to give to Esme, her aimer. She was the child she was to never have but fates decided differently.

    Her musings were interrupted by the sounds of laughter. Immediately Mariyan's honed in on the owners of the voices and felt no trouble to be had. Just innocent fun. Her scowl of concentration became a smile.

    "Banji! Do be careful! We're trying to harvest the fruit, not use it for sport!" she cautioned with a teasing tone as the young boy was about to throw a falling fruit at his friend.

    The boy belonged to Arens - a family of nearby distillers who had a contract with the Melens. The children often found their way onto the property but it was just good fun - for the most part.

    The blonde boy waved with a smile, Mariyan noted he lost another tooth. She remembered when Nadia called her with the news of her pregnancy! Five years couldn't have gone by that fast! "I promise! Just wanna watch the droids! It's fun!" He hunched over and dangled his arms like the farming droids and pretend picked some fruit. His friend, Marco did the same and it became a dance that kicked up dirt and fallen blossoms.

    Mariyan laughed fondly. "Good boy. If you're around later, why don't you stop by for some juice. If your mother says it's alright, of course."

    He perked up and grinned. "OK! I will! Have fun doing your walk thingy."

    Banji was perspective. He knew she liked to walked and gather her thoughts amongst the trees.

    She smirked, clicking her tongue. "Thank you, dear boy, Now off with you before my droids think you're a ripe fruit and pluck you right up since you're so sweet."

    He and Marco laughed and ran off and Mariyan allowed herself a moment of introspection when Esmeralda was so innocent and carefree ...
    Last edited by Mariyan Melen; Aug 1st, 2021 at 10:55:37 PM.

  2. #2
    The retro pazaak tournament announcer's voice droned on the holonet. Esme had tuned to this station, but she wasn't exactly watching or listening to it. It was just noise used to try and drown out the staticky feedback buzzing in her head. Though alone in the family room, she nevertheless sat in a shuttered posture, legs crossed tightly at the knee, arms folded across her chest. She wore dark, drab, loose-fitting attire, her dark, long hair straight and lank. She was staring through the pazaak tournament on screen, in nearly a meditative state.

    "Pure pazaak..." she muttered a split second before the scene unfolded and the announcer said as much.

    The precognition earned a frown and Esme closed her eyes, focusing on the never-ending drone of the announcer as he discussed the players' cards in a hushed whisper. For a brief moment, Esmeralda wondered why he did that? Who was he afraid would overhear? He wasn't even in the same space as the players were. She opened her eyes long enough to roll them, shifted her posture even tighter, and re-closed her eyes.

  3. #3
    Upon entering the Melen family home, Mariyan scowled with concern as the tumultuous cascade of thoughts had hit the matriarch hard like a slap in the face. She inhaled deeply and smoothed the concentrated lines from her face and went to her daughter. Esme was in the family room, body rigid and barely noticeable she was alive save for the erratic eye movements under close lids.

    "Ah... my little aimer," she whispered gently upon approach.

    With a delicate touch of her pointer finger against Esme's brow, Mariyan offered her moments peace. A warmth spread from mother to daughter and slowly Mariyan pushed out the intrusive images or risk damaging her daughter's mind. This was a constant problem. As Esme grew older, so did her abilities. Mariyan worked tirelessly to train her but it was challenging with how powerful her abilities were to see the future. Mariyan had snippets of the past, present, and future as all who were Force sensitive, but Esme was a savant. Her gift was being constantly bombarded with potential fractured futures, let alone immediate predictions.

    It was frustrating for a mother to not control this ability better. She even considered seeking out the Jedi on Ossus to assist, but that would be admitting to the galaxy that Mariyan Croft, Jedi of the Galactic Republic, was alive and survived the attack upon the Jedi Temple on Ilum.

    She leaned down and placed a tender kiss atop Esme's head while gently stroking the unruly hair. "That should help for a little while."

  4. #4
    Esmeralda twitched, then sighed softly. Her tense posture relaxed ever so slightly, the frown easing on her brow. The younger Melen came around and wiped away tears that had leaked through her tightly closed eyes, and blinked up at her mother.

    "It was bad?" she asked.

    Esme reached and clicked off the HoloNet. She couldn't remember what she'd been watching now, and at present, it was an informercial for power converters. She didn't care about that and wasn't about to buy anyway.

  5. #5
    And just like that, Esmeralda was back. Her beloved aimer.

    "Quite bad," she confirmed. "But not the worst."

    Mariyan stroked her daughter's hair a few more times before standing upright. "Why didn't the staff come get me?" her tender voice turned sharp as she looked towards the door, mind wandering through the halls to the nearest presences of life. "They know to when you're having a spell."

  6. #6
    Esme supposed her question was rhetorical since she hadn't consciously known she was having an episode. There was no way she could have known why the staff were non-responsive to it!

    Esmeralda shivered and languidly rose to her feet, rubbing her hands against her upper arms as though she felt a chill. Petite and dark-haired like her mother, she carried a weariness or heaviness in her countenance; the visions -- remembered or not -- made her feel like she carried the weight of the galaxy on her narrow shoulders.

    She sniffed and offered a half-smile. "You smell like ripe namana."

  7. #7
    The humanoid staff were too far away to take notice that her daughter had drawn inward, Mariyan surmised. Of course why the droids were ignorant was another matter. Perhaps the spell just occurred and there was no way for them to have noticed.

    Absently she caressed her daughter's back with feather light circles to soothe her.

    "Ha!" she grinned, happy for Esme's humor. "Far sweeter than you right now. Shall I draw you a bath?"

    The staff would normally do this but Mariyan had no qualms about caring for her beloved Esme personally.

  8. #8
    "You can..." Esme drawled, a trace of her sense of humor reemerging, "...but I don't know what I'd do with that kind of sketch."

    She cricked her neck from side to side, loosening tension that had built up in her neck and shoulders from the episode. That, she thought, was the worst part. She always felt like bantha dung after a bad one.

    "What were you doing out there?" she asked.

  9. #9
    She smiled warmly but immediately her face lit up before laughing. "No. I suppose you wouldn't."

    Mariyan locked their arms together after Esme worked the stiffness out like always, leading her out of the room. Her daughter desperately needed a bath despite the humor. She was saddened that Esme couldn't have joined her in the walk through the fields. They could have both smelled like ripe namanas. "I was checking on the harvest. We're on schedule to meet demands."

    She closed the door behind them and continue. "Banji was loitering as usual, but no harm."

  10. #10
    Esmeralda nodded. While she was of course glad for their grove of namana fruit because it provided them a good life without much effort, it wasn't her passion. Then again, Esme didn't know what her passion was either.

    "If left unchecked, Banji would probably eat the whole harvest," she chuckled.

    As they reached the bathroom, Esme gave her mother a tired, but confident look.

    "Sorry for the scare. I feel like I'm back to 'me' now. Unfortunately for you!" she said with a grin. "Why don't you go take care of you for a bit. I'll clean up and then go take a nap."

  11. #11
    Out in the blasted kriffin' middle of nowhere. That's just great. Wonder how long it'll take before anyone comes along?

    Beaz looked each up down the narrow road. She took a deep breath and smoothed out her agitation, just like a servant would iron out a wrinkle. Her skin tone settled back into the usual pale green hue.

    This is fine, she told herself. Just. Fine.

    Beaz sat down side saddle on the speedbiker she'd rented. Among whatever other problems this 'bike had, the repulsor coils had failed and the speederbike now listed hard to one side. The Falleen would've admitted that she looked comical atop the broken down 'bike if she'd been in any mood for humor. She checked her comlink for a signal and sighed, skin rippling orange-ish with irritation. She checked the compass and re-oriented herself; Beaz debated whether to ditch the 'bike and just walk... but as a newcomer to Bakura, she'd already realized that wide open spaces lasted for a very long way here.

    Do I stay or do I go? she mused.


    Beaz slipped gracefully off the 'bike and searched the saddlebag compartments for anything useful in the rental, patted the blaster in its tucked away holster under her vest, then set off on foot in the direction she'd last been traveling... until the speederbike had broken down.

  12. #12
    She gazed at Esme with patient but pensive eyes as any worried mother would. Acquiescing with a nod, Mariyan smiled and produced the namana blossom from her inside jacket pocket she picked just for her daughter. With gentle fingers, she tucked Esme's hair behind her ear and slide the stem in place.

    "There," she said with a smirk, "now you can smell like namana too."

    She placed a kiss on Esme's forehead and smiled thinly. "Alright. My intervention should last awhile but I'm letting the staff know to get me just in case this time. I don't wnat to talk in on you like that again!"


    A namana fruit just narrowly missed Beaz's head. "SORRY!!!"

    Two young boys came running, breathing hard and with wide eyes as they took in the bristling green woman in front of them. She did not look friendly at all.

    "I .... I didn't hit you ... right?" Banji asked tentatively, pulling at his fingers as his friend Marco peeked from behind.

  13. #13
    "The frak?!"

    When the unknown object flew past her, nearly hitting her on the side of the head, Beaz flattened to the earth on instinct. The namana fruit came to a stop just beyond her. Relieved that this wasn't an actual assault, she still rolled her eyes because this surprise just made an already banner day even better.

    Voss quickly rose and stalked toward the two boys, her expression irritated. Seeing that it was just two kids, though, she decided it was enough just to put the fear of their Maker into them with her look, without needing to influence them with her pheromones.

    "No, you didn't. I guess it is your lucky day, even though it is not yet mine," she said in accented Basic. "Were you trying to hit me, little man?"

  14. #14
    The boys feet were glued to the ground, eyes wide with fright. Marco ducked just a little lower behind Banji because if this green lady was mad, she needed to be mad at him. Banji threw the fruit after all even if it was an accident.

    "NO!" Banji yelled. "I was trying to hit him!"

    He pointed at Marco who nodded quickly, his long bangs that needed a cut flopping around his eyes.

  15. #15
    Beaz lifted a skeptical brow ever-so-slightly, studying the boys. Otherwise, her expression remained stern and imposing.

    "You have terrible aim then," she said matter-of-factly, "since I am here, and he is behind you."

    It was perverse and mean, but Beaz was taking a little pleasure from scaring the boys with her continued attitude. She wanted them to squirm, just because. If she was irritated with her situation, she may as well enjoy this diversion. Right?


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