Recordings from the Holocron of Kira Keldav – Return to Alderaan

   Well, it looks like if I survive the next few days, I may very well be heading back to Alderaan after being gone for eight months. It feels like another lifetime ago. Thinking about the others back home does make me homesick. Biggest fear I have is although I may return to Alderaan, I might never be able to return home again.

   I’ve changed, there is no doubt about that. I have also been aware that my friends have been changing too. We were all growing up, becoming respectable adults (well most of us). We weren’t drifting about, far from it. We still met on a regular basis and preferentially spent time with each other than with anyone we had met in our higher schooling. We were just no longer the band of kids continually getting into mischief around town.

   They were all well on their way towards new careers of their own. I struggled to find something to do with my life. With some encouragement and support from them and others, I was probably heading in the direction of joining the Security Forces. It wasn’t ideal, but life rarely is. Especially when you are as uncooperative as I usually am. I suspect we each would have married in turn, bringing spouses and children into our group. Bringing up the next generation of barely tolerated deviants as time went on.

   Then I proceeded to get captured by the Sith and develop Force powers. How do I go back after this change? I really don’t want to become like the Jedi, always reclusive, showing no emotion whether good or bad. Never mind the fact that I am now wanted by a lot of the major powers in the galaxy.

   Do they want me to return, or would they rather I simply stayed away now? Would their lives be simpler and happier if I never came back? These questions I have been trying hard not to face, and yet I am now forced to confront head on.

   I do not think things will go well. Mother and Father have likely assumed the worst about the rumors swirling around me. Sabrina will undoubtedly want to kill me, and Nichel will probably pull some crap about defending the family honor from me. Nathan is going to be intimidated and fearful. Barcos would probably side with the authorities and Dorothy will find somewhere safe to hide.

   Odds are good that any attempt to land on the planet openly is going to result in my arrest or detention. Landing covertly is only going to make matters worse when they inevitably catch me or find out I am on the planet. Not like I could go into hiding in Crevasse City for that matter either, I am way too distinguishable and too well known around town for that to work.

   Nonetheless, I have to get home, see that they are all safe and warn them. I am having enough trouble resisting the Dark Side as it is without having something happen to one of them.

 

   Reactions to the Letter Home from Friends and Family

   Marcus and Seren Keldav

He’s alive!

   Sabrina Keldav

So he is alive! I’ll kill him! How dare he make us worry this whole time. At least he had enough sense to run away from the Sith. But the rest of this nonsense I am hearing? Assaults on bounty hunter guilds, major estates, Jedi Temples, and rumors that he was part of the resistance on Telos, is he trying to piss off the galaxy?

I swear, when I get my hands on him, I will bandage him up to the best of my ability and then kill him.

   Nichel Keldav

Alright, I am impressed. Escaping from the Sith after being trained by them no less. Seems even they had difficulty controlling my brother. Now the fool should have run straight to the Republic the moment he escaped instead of this running around nonsense.

Heh, to think that Kira of all people may end up becoming a Jedi. Not that I expect the Jedi to have any more luck keeping him in line than anyone else has. I am sure this misunderstanding will get cleared up in the end. He did reject the Sith afterall.

   Nathan Olath

Can’t keep Kira down. I swear, I don’t know if he is lucky to be continually surviving these situations or if he is unlucky that he keeps getting into them repeatedly.

Now if he is on the run, it is quite conceivable that whoever is following him is leaving a trail somewhere. If he can learn how they are tracking him and who is doing it, he might be better off. It is worth looking into, and it can’t hurt him.

   Dorothy Glithe

I knew it! I don’t know how, or why, but I knew he was alive out there somewhere. And he has become a Force User no less! I always thought there was some part of him missing, maybe this is it? Someone has to inform the Alderaan government, try to get them to intervene, maybe even appeal to the Senator. Blast, I am just an intern at the moment, will anyone higher up listen to me? Gotta try.

   Barcos Bernelli

Good show. Breaking free of the Sith is no mean feat. Now his follow up from there appears to be severely lacking, but I am sure an understanding could be reached with the Republic given an opportunity to open dialogue. Of course, Kira is probably going to have a hard time trusting most anyone in the Republic right now. Perhaps it is time a friend try and step in, someone he can trust.

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6 Responses

  1. Mary Sue.

    • Mary Sue

      According to wikipedia – A fictional character with overly idealized and hackneyed mannerisms, lacking noteworthy flaws, and primarily acting as a wish-fulfillment fantasy for the author or reader.

      Response to each part:

      Yes, Kira is a fictional character. Things would be rather odd if he wasn’t.

      Is he highly idealized? Hardly, he lacks strength in the Force, technical prowess, experience, charisma, and wisdom. Kira hardly even represents the idealized rebel without a cause as he is quite willing to give in if the odds are against him. Note the fact he was willing to meet the Jedi as opposed to the “never take me alive” so common with rebellious characters.

      Are his mannerisms hackneyed? Well most Jedi and Sith I have seen in the EU are either destroying stars to prove how evil they are or are paragons of virtue embodying the “Will of the Force” as the norm. A Force user openly questioning if being Force sensitive is all it’s cracked up to be is rather unusual.

      Does he lack noteworthy flaws? Well offhand I would say Kira is self-centered, arrogant, untrained, inexperienced, paranoid, and more than a bit naive. Should every other member of the party die next session, Kira wouldn’t shed a tear for them. He would lament the lack of a pilot and people to watch his back, but he wouldn’t give it more thought beyond that. He has other priorities right now.

      Is he primarily acting as a wish-fulfillment fantasy for me or someone else? Well yes, there is a part of me that would love to have supernatural powers and the possibility to roam the Star Wars galaxy in a grand adventure. There is also part of me that would hate the idea of having almost everyone in the galaxy chasing me.

      When I read you calling Kira a Mary Sue, I can think of several arguments you might be thinking to yourself:

      “Kira is the center of things!” Well Kira has continuity to the previous campaign, clear goals, and is aggressive enough to go after them. By default he is going to be central to the campaign at the beginning. Especially when everyone else’s goals are fairly generic: wanting to tinker, hunt dangerous animals, make money smuggling, learn about society, and keep an eye on the group.

      “Kira can do things Lazlo can’t!” Tough, spend the xp to build Lazlo the same and you too can do stuff like Kira. Kira can’t do everything Lazlo can like take nearly as much damage or kill things with his bare hands. You don’t see me crying over it. And if you are complaining about the results of die rolls, then you are in the wrong game.

      “Brian has written more material on Kira than I have on Lazlo!” Once again, tough. During my typical day there are times when doing this is the only way I can keep the boredom away. Your inability to write background material does not make Kira a Mary Sue.

      “Kira’s plans always work out well for him!” Well, I like to think I plan ahead and take advantage of circumstances as they occur. Kira being a little genre savvy helps in that respect too. But as you have been so fond of pointing out, my plans don’t always work either. But I at least make plans and contingencies instead of “That’s stupid”. Waiting to use hindsight to point out the flaws in other’s plans is not intelligence, it is only fooling yourself and no one else.

      “Everyone one else in the party listens to Kira!” Well this is an artifact of Kira presenting coherent plans to the others. Criticizing other people’s plans and goals without providing alternatives will get you ignored. Guess what is happening to Lazlo? Ben wants a manufacturing facility to experiment with, Alys wants leads on dangerous fauna to hunt, Kira wants records of Force experiments, and Handell wants someplace to hide when on the run. Given all of that, keeping the Sith base or at least parts of it make a lot of sense. Saying it’s stupid because you don’t want to have a base without explaining why it’s in everyone else’s best interests is itself stupid and is only getting yourself ignored.

  2. No. He’s a Mary Stue (well, Marty Stu) because the background NPC’s all sacchirinely adore him, because in-game NPC’s all hate him because he’s an obnoxious jerkass but do nothing about it, and because his enemies appear to be absurdly incompetent.

    In the future, try asking rather than making wild and insulting assumptions.

    • Given that I’m running the NPC’s, I’d have to point out that:

      Family and friends normally like you, and will usually be pleased to hear that you’re not dead.

      The background NPC’s do not all saccharinely adore Kira; hostile acquaintances have been noted.

      The in-game NPC’s don’t all hate Kira.

      The only personal enemy (of Kira, Handell, Khadim, and 10-CH) to appear so far is D’arc – and he came fairly close to winning, which is better than he did when you introduced him.

  3. Well the first insult was making accusations about my writing skills without bothering to back up your claims whatsoever. I take great offense at people putting down the quality of my work without explaining why. Call it taking pride in what I do.

    As for your points:

    “The background NPC’s all sacchirinely adore him”

    Hardly, let’s see what is in my own background material I have submitted already as an example. We have Mrs Beasley continually accusing him of being a thug and trying to poison her cat. We also have Officer Larson, who was responding to calls regarding Kira for much of the last decade if not longer. He pushed to have Kira drafted into the military as much to get Kira out of his hair as to get Kira in an environment that will straighten him out. Kira’s own mother is to the point she and Kira will not speak to each other at the dinner table to prevent arguments and have a nice meal. Dorothy’s parents despise Kira. Nathan’s own family dislike him spending time with Kira for much of the same reasons.

    Nevermind Kira’s Sith Master who lost a hand, his third best lightsaber, and his apprentice when Kira escaped. Oh yes, I really bet he is singing Kira’s praises.

    Now, Kira’s family being glad he is alive when all evidence pointed to him being dead should be a given. I feel sorry for the person that has managed to so alienate themselves from family that news of their survival would not be greeted with joy. Kira’s friends are in the same situation: a friend they have had since childhood has turned out to be alive when all hope was lost. If this isn’t normal or expected behavior for family and friends, then by all means tell me how I should behave to Afganistan vets who return after being declared MIA.

    “In-game NPC’s all hate him”

    Well Kira has shown up on a nice quiet little world where the biggest issue the locals faced was the occassional fisherman lost to giant jellyfish. In the last couple weeks since Kira has arrived they have born witness to: a weapon capable of sterilizing half the planet being found, bounty hunters attacking the port and governor’s office, a major Jedi/Sith battle taking place in orbit, people accusing Kira of being a insane Sith Lord, a weapons lab filled with suicidal bio weapons, an explosion visible hundreds of miles away, and assorted general chaos. Given all of that, I really can’t blame the locals for being unhappy with Kira.

    The Jedi are in a similar boat. Kira does not fit their standard classifications of Jedi or Sith. Kira has also managed to cause massive amounts of chaos and destruction everywhere he has gone. Nevermind the absurd stunts that seem to occur at unnatural rates around him. Thing is, he has mostly been aiming all of that at the Sith. They would really prefer to just be able to call him a Sith, kill him, and be done with it or for him to start acting like a normal Jedi. Sadly morals/ethics/justice/whatever does not allow them to do things that simply. Now the Jedi are trying to ignore Kira and pretend he doesn’t exist.

    The Sith have ample reason to hate Kira. He ESCAPED from one of their secret academies after learning a lot of their techniques and lore. He even seriously injured a Sith Master in the process. Who knows what Sith secrets Kira may have without even realizing it. Ever since then he has been continually dodging pursuit, making a mockery of their attempts to catch him, destroying their other plans in the area, and is now posting videos of their failures on the galactic youtube. Can’t really blame them for wanting to capture or kill him.

    De’arc is a lot like the Sith as well. He has lost everything he had to Kira and crew twice now. He is being openly mocked for his embarassments and wasn’t all that happy to begin with. Now he is “responsible” for leading the Sith into a series of really major disasters in pursuit of Kira. Yep, I can understand why he might dislike Kira alot.

    That about sums it up for in game NPC’s met thus far. I am sure the list of people who hate Kira will grow. Hopefully not as fast as the list of people he knows. Remember too, that almost all of these save the locals were run by you in the previous campaign. How you ran them is not my fault.

    “He’s an obnoxious jerkass but (they) do nothing about it”

    Yes, Kira is a smart ass. In many ways Kira feels his life has turned into an action/horro movie. Him having watched all sorts of movies on Jedi and Sith as a kid has also made him a bit genre savvy and he has enjoyed mocking the Jedi and Sith about it to no end. He firmly believes in commonsense and intelligence in a world that looks like it is a movie with all that entails. I will not deny he is a smart ass.

    Thing is, what can anyone do about it? Well the Sith have tried with less than stellar results. Right now, I am willing to bet there is a dead Sith Commander out there willing to sell his immortal soul in exchange for having Kira at his mercy. The Sith will be back.

    The Jedi have been trying to track him down and “interrogate” him for quite some time. They also finally caught up with him not long ago. They “captured” him, gave him a stern lecture, accused him of all sorts of things, then asked him to explain himself. They didn’t believe him and were possibly going to lock him up anyway. Then the Sith arrive and Kira somehow managed to get a jellyfish to eat the Sith. What are they going to do to him after that? Accuse him of fighting against the enemies of the Republic and thereby treason? Accuse him of being a Sith when he is clearly not? Accuse him of hoarding weapons of mass destruction when he is quite willing to show them all destroyed or dismantled? Nope, the Jedi can’t do a damn thing to the smart ass and hope to cling to the moral high ground.

    How about the locals? Let’s see, we have one individual confirmed to have possessed a weapon of mass destruction at one point. Said person has also been accused of being an insane nutjob Sith by bounty hunters, and is wanted by the Republic, the Jedi, the Sith, and the bounty hunters. He also has more firepower at his disposal than the rest of the planet does. What do you seriously expect them to do? Lock him in jail? You will note they have repeatedly begged us to leave on more than one occassion. They even offered to bribe us with alcohol.

    “His enemies appear to be absurdly incompetent”

    The hallmark of a good plan, is when everything is said and done, the enemy is left wondering what the hell just happened. Let’s look at our battles thus far: jellyfish, security droids, bounty hunters, Jedi, Sith, and Garyan.

    The jellyfish catch things and eat them. It is what they do. Not much strategy comes into play when you are the size of a blue whale and everything else is classified as food. Are they incompetent? Well, they are stupid, but they seem to be doing well for invertebrates.

    The security droids have been of moderate competence. You could argue that the Sith should have programmed them to shoot anyone showing up reading records off datapads for several minutes before giving passcodes. On the other hand, we did have completely valid security codes. Plus we weren’t trying to destroy the base either (Garyan is not my responsibility). Droids thereby followed their programming and treated us like allies. Could it have been a more violent encounter? Yes, but we chose to subvert the enemy instead of destroy them. That does not make them incompetent, only very rigid in their programming.

    What about the Bounty Hunters (De’arc included)? They brought more than sufficient weaponry to fight us head to head. They knew of our capabilities to the letter. They even turned the locals against us with well told stories about us that had a great deal of truth to them. They failed for two reasons: 1.) Kira did not act as expected when he went to the governor’s to sort things out, 2.) Lazlo stumbled upon them before they had a chance to launch a first strike. They lost the element of surprise at the port and it cost them dearly. The others that went after Kira did not anticipate that Kira would try to keep a witness alive and conscious to verify it was an unprovoked attack and peg blame back on them. Even then, they very nearly won both battles. That is unlucky, not incompetent.

    The Jedi showed up, took control of the entire port complex within moments with overwhelming force and then successfully captured their target. The fact that Kira was not resisting is beside the point. They then brought him back into custody and were devoting all their efforts at interrogating the “Sith” in their midst. A supposedly poor weld job was overlooked as minor compared to the threat Kira represented to them. While they failed to anticipate that Khadim would sneak aboard and point a anti-capital ship weapon at them, I can’t blame them there. They smartly agreed further accusations were going to go nowhere and agreed to a truce while dealing with the Sith. Seems reasonable to me.

    Now the Sith came in with overwhelming force and were well on their way towards winning the battle. They had this one in the bag regardless of what the Jedi could do. They failed to anticipate that the pilot wasn’t panicking when flying low like that, but was leading them into a trap. Afterall, when would the Jedi have had a chance to set up such an elaborate trap? They had two reasonable options, one was to assume the pilot was panicking, and the other was to assume something else was going on. They got greedy and arrogant, and Ben expertly managed to turn that against them with a properly placed battleship. They would have won had we not intervened. And as you were saying at the time, “This is stupid”, no one would have believed we would try something so stupid. And that is why it worked.

    I am not even going to touch on Garyan’s short stint as an enemy of all life on the planet. Besides, that would not be related to the quality of my writing or Kira being a Gary Stu or whatever.

    What do I see here when I read your comment?

    “I cannot distinguish between characters when denoting who is playing them.”

    The NPC’s were either played by you in the previous campaign or Paul in the current one. I don’t run them, nor did I create most of them. I have already stated I feel the current batch are being run quite well. I won’t touch the ones from the prior campaign as it is irrelevent to the current discussion.

    “I will not read material before mocking it.”

    Considering what I stated above about the material you openly mocked, I think this one is cut and clear. You stated all the background characters loved Kira when that is clearly not the case.

    “I cannot be expected to explain myself when I make accusations about others.”

    When I tell someone that their work is severely lacking, I HAVE to explain why without being asked to. My work as a professional allows me to do no less. This is how adults interact. Throwing baseless insults and accusations is best left on the playground where it belongs.

    “I do not understand friends and family enough to realize that they are typically happy to see loved ones alive.”

    This much appears clear when you denigrate the idea that family and friends like Kira and would be happy to learn he is still alive.

    “When people do something differently than I would have done it, then they must be stupid because I am right.”

    Not everyone is as stupid as you think they are. There may be reasons you are not aware of for them to act the way they do. Or there might be a better idea that you haven’t thought of. Or maybe, just maybe, you seriously misunderstand the situation and came to the wrong conclusion.

    So far you have managed to throw insults at both me and Paul. I am also fairly certain that Anthony and Margaret would take offense at some of what you have said or are implying here. If you do not like the game we are playing, then you are free to leave. None of us are forcing you to play this game.

  4. […] Recordings from the Holocron of Kira Keldav: Return to Alderaan […]

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