“Kaycee !” the husky man yelled. He stood in the middle of a large construction yard . Around him lay piles of junk parts and heavy repair equipment. It was the end of the harvest season and huge harvest droids labored in the distance . As far as the eye could see there was nothing but fields that were being harvested by the plodding behemoths.
“Kaycee were are you !” the large man wiped his red face with his hand . His face always turned bright red when he was angry. The wind was coming in from the north west and seemed cooler than it had been. Winter was on the way and there was a lot of work to be done still before the snows came. He had been looking for his daughter for an hour now and she was nowhere to be found . Kaycee was a good mech and had a real knack for fixing things but she was always day dreaming about other places and adventure .
The man saw Ceecee , Kaycee’s twin sister go into the droid shed . He pushed the throttle forward on the parts hauler and it’s thick legs lurched forward toward the shed. As he entered the massive doorway he saw Ceecee climbing into the cab of the other parts hauler . It had the engine that Kaycee was supposed to be working on strapped to the flatbed.
“Where’s your sister ?” the man bellowed.
“She’s at the house, she finished early and went to take a shower before the hired men got there.” she shouted back.
“I’m the one that says when someone is finished not her !” he yelled. He swung the hauler around and headed toward the house . He could see Kaycee’s vrek tied to the front porch of the house as he pulled up and jumped out. The man threw open the door ,”Where are you girl ?” he yelled. He could hear voices from upstairs. He climbed the stairs as quickly as his legs could carry him and burst into the girl’s room. There was his daughter,Kaycee, listening to her comm link. Ceecee was warning her that their father was coming and he was mad. Kaycee had just gotten out of the shower and was only wearing her robe.
“I’ll teach you to walk off the job you little whore !” he said smacking her and shoving her to the ground.
“I was finished Pa! I just wanted to get my shower before the men came in from work.” she pleaded as she tried to block his blows.
“Lying little whore ! You came back to screw one of them bastards ! He picked her up and threw her against the wall hard.
“Pa I wouldn’t, I don’t even like those boys.” she said trying to calm him down.
He smacked her again and threw Kaycee on to the bed. She quickly pulled her torn robe closed and crawled to the far side . He began get on the bed when Ceecee ran in.
“PA ! The load carrier is on fire !” she yelled.
“Can’t anything go right around here ?!” he howled as he got up and ran down the stairs.
Ceecee looked at Kaycee sitting on the bed holding her robe shut.
“Are you alright ?”Ceecee asked concerned.
“I’m okay.” she replied brushing her wet blonde hair out of her face .
“Okay then I’d better go help the bastard put out the fire, after all, I started it.” Ceecee smiled as she left the room and double stepped it down the stairs and outside.
Kaycee realized that Ceecee had set the load carrier on fire to get their father away from her. She was the only friend she had on the homestead. Her father had built a thriving repair business here. They built and repaired just about everything from farm droids to spacecraft.
Kaycee looked in the mirror for cuts or bruises. Nothing that bad today, her sister had saved her just in time. Her father had been getting more abusive toward her lately. She didn’t know why but it was becoming a regular ordeal. He would blow up on her at least once a week for the slightest things and accuse her of terrible things. He never even got mad at her brothers and paid almost now attention to Ceecee at all.
That night Ceecee brought up some diner to her. They had been secretly repairing a small spacecraft that the owner never finished paying for so it had just been sitting behind the large hanger for about two years. They had planned to take it and run away some place when they had a little more money saved up. Both girls had grown up at the compound and were fully capable to service just about anything mechanical.
Ceecee left to make sure their father was busy with other things until he went to bed. She had made it her mission to protect her sister from their father.
It was very late when Kaycee suddenly woke up. She heard a distant droning sound. She looked out of her window and saw a tiny light in the sky far in the distance. Kaycee quickly opened the window and grabbed her magna viewers. It was a spacecraft approaching from the west. She could just make it out and could see it was on fire and going to crash. Parts were coming off and she realized there was no hope for the ship to make a safe landing. She threw on her overalls and boots then she ran down stairs and out to the barn. The ship was going to hit in the upper fields. That would put it on community property so if she got there first she could claim it and sell the scrap. That would give them the money they needed to leave. Her father would want the money but she didn’t care if she got a beating she would keep it so when the ship was ready they could leave. Jaycee saddled her vrek and took off across the compound toward the upper fields. The ship was maneuvering frantically and she knew whoever was flying it was good but they had no chance at that speed. As Kaycee got to the fence she gave her vrek a swift swat on it’s rump and it hurdled the fence with ease. She didn’t realize it would be so cold this night and wished she had put more clothes on against the chill air. The spacecraft made it’s final dive but just before impact the pilot was able to pull the nose up just before it hit causing it to belly flop and skid across the freshly harvested field. It slid for along time kicking up a huge cloud of debris in it’s wake. The pilot had pulled off the impossible and made a good crash landing. Suddenly the fire from the engine flared up and the ship exploded in a huge fire ball. That was the end of that, the ship was definitely up for grabs now. Kaycee looked around for anyone else that might be after the wreck but didn’t see anybody around. With a gentle kick in the side her vrek lurched forward toward the burning wreck. The bird-like vrek started to make a chirping sound as they got closer . This usually meant some one was nearby. vreks have an excellent sense of smell. Kaycee stopped and looked through her magna viewers to see what the vrek was smelling. Up ahead in the field she could just make out a person walking toward the wreck. They must have been in the field when the ship crashed.
“Why would someone be out here in the middle of the night?” she thought. Well it didn’t matter she was going to get that salvage money no matter what. Kaycee smacked her mount and went head long across the field to be the first to the wreck.
As she got closer she saw the person was walking away from the wreck not towards it. The person’s silhouette was back lit by the flames of the burning fuel tanks from the ship. She could make out a cloak blowing in the chill wind. The figure walked tall and straight as if on a level floor. There was a definite presence about this person that she found mesmerizing. Kaycee’s only concern now was to see who this was and see their face. She stopped the vrek and dis mounted . Kaycee stood holding the reins and waited . The figure walked directly toward Kaycee as her heart began to race with anticipation. She could see the person was carrying a shoulder bag full of something as they drew closer . She still could not make out a face because of the raging fire behind the figure. By now the person was about ten feet away and for the first time Kaycee saw it was a woman . In one motion the woman pulled back her hood and pulled her pistol leveling it at Kaycee’s head.
“I must have died in that crash because I’m looking at the face of an angel.” the woman said in a friendly tone. She put the pistol away and said “Sorry about that, I thought you might have been someone else.”
Kaycee blinked in disbelief. She had never seen a woman this beautiful in her life. Her long raven black hair was blowing in the night breeze . It was shimmering with streaks of dark purple and blue like the wings of a black bird. She was tall and muscular wearing only a tiny bikini type top and bottoms under her hooded poncho. Long black boots that came up to her thigh made of some rare animal leather matched her long gloves. Her eyes were the most striking as they were a bluish violet in color and seemed to look right through her.
“ What is a pretty young girl like you doing out in this field this late ?”the woman asked.
“I came for the salvage on the ship.” Kaycee said looking down. She couldn’t look this woman in the eyes. She was so beautiful and other worldly she must look to her like some horrible back world bumpkin . She suddenly felt ashamed of how she was dressed in those filthy overalls and boots. The woman’s clothes were of the finest materials and probably cost more than her vrek.
“Well you can have the salvage if you can tell me where I can find a ship for sale around here.” she said. The woman began to pet and stroke the head of the vrek which was unusual because it only let Kaycee do that .
“What a wonderful animal you have, it really likes you I can sense it. I always wanted one when I was a little girl .”she smiled at Kaycee and stroked her face in an almost motherly way.
“We have six at the compound.” Kaycee said. She felt stupid after saying it but she felt like an idiot around this woman. She was so wonderful and polite. She was just in a crash landing and was speaking as if she had just walked into a family gathering.
“How far is your compound from here my dear?” said the woman.
“It’s just over that rise.”Kaycee said looking back over her shoulder just in time to see her father and brothers cresting the top in a grav sled. They had come for the salvage and Kaycee knew there would be an argument over it with her. She was dying inside of embarrassment from what she knew was coming.
“Oh no.”she said half under her breath. “It’s my father and brothers, they want the salvage too I bet.”
“Don’t worry, you and I have already settled it, the salvage is yours if you can take me to a ship I can buy.”the woman said.
“ My father has a few for sale.” she said looking down. Kaycee noticed for the first time she had stepped behind the woman as if she new she would protect her.
The large grav sled pulled up in front of the two women. Kaycee could see her father was red faced as she expected. He stood in the drivers seat and looked down at the two.
“Who are you and what are you doing to my daughter !” he bellowed. Her brothers were taking his lead and jumped down off the sled trying to look tough.
“My name is Stella Star, that was my ship over there, do you have one I might buy from you ? As you can see I am in need of one.” the woman said taking a step forward.
“Yeah, I got a couple for sale .” Kaycee’s father answered. He seemed to change his attitude almost immediately.
“You have done what I asked, the ship salvage is yours.” Stella looking back at Kaycee.
She did it! She got the salvage! Now Ceecee and her could leave. Kaycee grinned at Stella.”Thank you.”Kaycee said.
“What’s in the bag lady, anything valuable?” Pa asked.
Stella smiled and with the slightest wave of her hand said,”You don’t need to know what is in my bag.”
“Never mind, I don’t need to know that I guess.”said the father.
“You might as well head back now sir your daughter and I will be walking back.” she said with another wave of her hand.
“We’re going to go on back Kaycee, you and Miss Star can take your time and walk back..”Pa said as he motioned the brothers to get back on the sled.
“Oh, do you have a place I can sleep tonight ?” Stella said as they began to leave.
“I’ll have my other daughter make up the guest room miss.” he said as they drove off.
It was over, she had the salvage and there was no big fight. For the first time in a long time Kaycee felt good.
“Oh, I’m Kaycee by the way.”she said and stuck her hand out.
Stella took her hand but instead of shaking it she just held it by her side and began to walk gently giving it a tug to get Kaycee to walk with her. Kaycee thought Stella was being a little overly friendly but then Stella glanced at her and she could tell she meant her no harm.
The two women walked for a while before Kaycee noticed the vrek was following them without either one holding it’s reins. The beast, like Kaycee wanted to be around Stella for some reason.
“So where are you from? “ Kaycee asked trying to make conversation.
“I’m from here, this planet, I left a long time ago.”Stella said. “I never thought I would ever see it again. I was taken in a raid by pirates when I was about twelve. I’ve been everywhere and seen just about everything since then I guess.”Stella looked at Kaycee and smiled but she could see there was some bad things that happened to her behind that smile.
“What happened to your ship, I mean what caused it to crash?”Kaycee asked.
“Well since we’re friends now I guess I can tell you. That wasn’t my ship. I hid on board to steal the stuff in this bag. Oh don’t worry, the guy that owned the stuff before me stole it first from another guy.”Stella said.
Kaycee’s eyes went wide as she looked back at the still burning wreckage.
“Don’t worry I pitched his body out of the airlock way before I entered the atmosphere. There’s no burning body in that wreckage.”Stella picked up the pace and was swinging their hands like two children off to school. Kaycee looked at Stella waiting for her to give her the rest of the story, the part of the story that made the last part she said all okay.
“ You seem the type that would like to have adventures.” Stella said still smiling. “Well I can tell you from my own experiences you would love it. You’re not meant to stay here the rest of your life. You should come with me when I leave.”
“Did you kill that man that owned the ship?” Kaycee said nervously.
“Well I hope you didn’t think I chucked him out into space while he was alive! Laughed Stella.
Kaycee pulled her hand out of Stella’s and stopped. “You tell me why you killed him before I go one more step with you.” Kaycee took a step back.
Stella seemed shocked at first then looked into Kaycee’s eyes. “Do you trust me Kaycee? Didn’t I make sure you got your salvage rights after I told you I would? I could have just given the wreck to your father as down payment for the ship I’m going to buy from him, I could have but I didn’t did I?” Stella said holding her hand out to Kaycee.
“I want to trust you but you talk about killing that man as if it was Nothing at all.”Kaycee said still unsure what to make of this woman.
“Kaycee there are men out there who need to be killed, men that have done terrible things to people. They have a darkness inside that pushes them to prey on others and do terrible things to them. The law can’t always be relied upon to do the right thing. Sometimes we have to take on this burden ourselves. And when some one does take the responsibility they must know they have done nothing wrong, they must feel no more guilt than the men that forced them into hunting them down. These men cause their own deaths. If they were good men no one would hunt them. It is their choice and they must take responsibility for what is done to them. That man was the one that raped and killed my mother and sold me into a nightmare when I was a child. He has been doing that his whole life to hundreds of others and he would have done the same to everyone you love if he had the chance. Yes I have blood on my hands but I can live with that.”Stella said almost pleading for Kaycee to understand.
Kaycee suddenly realized how little she new about the way things were off the compound. She only new that tiny patch of dirt and the town where they went for supplies.
“I’m sorry Stella, It’s just that I never knew anyone that killed someone before.”Kaycee said.
“Well I have killed people not just that one but more. It was always to defend myself or others, out there sometimes you don’t have a choice and if you’re coming with me you better get used to it.”said Stella.
“Wait, I never said I was going with you, I just met you, I need more time.”Kaycee couldn’t believe this whole situation. Just a half hour ago she was safe in her room asleep.
“Stella I don’t know why but I feel a real bond with you. I feel I was waiting for this moment my whole life but this is all happening way to fast.”Kaycee said looking at Stella.
“I have been planning to leave this planet for over a year but with my sister. We’ve been working on a spaceship in secret for a year together. I can’t just up and leave her.”she said.
“Trust me Kaycee she’ll be fine, I promise. Her path is different than yours. You must know that if you search your feelings.” Stella said.
“No, I won’t listen anymore!” Kaycee turned and mounted the vrek.. Stella waved her hand just as Kaycee tried to get the beast to move but it wouldn’t budge.
“Stop that! You’re scaring me! “ Kaycee screamed.
With a second wave of her hand Stella released the vrek and it and Kaycee bolted off toward the compound leaving Stella alone in the barren field.
Kaycee had ridden as fast as she could for home. There was something about Stella that she found mesmerizing and at the same time frightening. She felt confused and needed time to think. When she arrived at the compound the house was dark. Every body must have gone back to bed. Kaycee tied the vrek to one of the posts on the porch and went inside. She could see Stella walking up the path to the house in the moonlight. She looked very scary to her now. She had taken on a sinister quality that oddly enough she found herself drawn too.
“What are you looking at?” Ceecee said. She had just come out of the kitchen and nearly scared Kaycee half to death.
“Don’t do that !” Kaycee shot back at Ceecee.
“Whoa, easy girl, what’s got you so jumpy?” asked Ceecee.
“Here she comes, I’m going to bed, just take her to the guest room and make sure she stays there. I’ll explain everything later.”Kaycee said as she hurried up the stairs to her room.
That night Kaycee had strange dreams about Stella. She dreamed bout people and places she had never seen or heard of. At times she was happy and towards the end she could remember Stella looking at her but it wasn’t Stella it was a scarred and twisted version of her. Her eyes were yellow and bloodshot. Her hair was wild and tangled. Then the woman grabbed her and began to shake her violently.
“Wake up Kaycee ! Pa just sold that woman our ship! He new we were working on it all along !” Ceecee was shaking Kaycee forcing her awake.
“What ship? Kaycee asked still half asleep.
“The one behind the big hangar, the one we were going to run away in!” Ceecee was almost in tears.
Kaycee pulled on her overalls and boots then ran down stairs. She could hear her Pa’s voice in the kitchen and ran in. there she saw Stella standing by the stove having her morning drink. Her father had a huge stack of republic credits on the table in front of him.
“You girls did a fine job on that ship out there.” he said looking at the money and laughing.
Kaycee looked in disbelief at her father then at Stella, all that planning and secrecy gone.
“Why ? Why would you buy that ship?” Kaycee was in shock.
Stella took a long drink from her mug and swallowed. “You really didn’t give me much of a choice now did you?”
“Now go pack your things Kaycee we’re leaving this afternoon.” Stella was looking right into Kaycee’s eyes.
“I’m not going, I won’t leave Ceecee.”Kaycee said.
“Get your things girl, your going with Stella, I want you to go away with Miss Star.”Pa said as he counted the money in front of him.
Kaycee ran out the door and mounted her vrek. She took of as fast as the vrek would carry her across the fields. Her whole life had been tossed upside down in the blink of an eye. Who was this woman that has ruined all her plans?
“I just want to hear you say it, I want you to tell me you will do everything we have agreed upon.” Stella said as she casually ate a piece of toasted bread.
Kaycee’s father was stuffing the money Stella had given him into a metal box. “Yeah, yeah, no problem.” Pa looked at Ceecee standing in the corner wiping the tears from her eyes. “Them girls are more trouble then they are worth anyhow.”
Stella walked over and put her arm around Ceecee’s shoulder. “You should be happy dear, soon you will have your own ship and be off of this planet for good.”
“Do you promise Kaycee will be alright?” Ceecee asked looking up at Stella.
“No one will touch a hair on her head I promise.”Stella said as she patted her light saber hanging from her belt.
Kaycee had been gone all day trying to figure a way out of this mess. She had started to ride out to the crash sight to look at the wreckage of the ship that started all of this but she couldn’t. She was scared of what the future would bring. Maybe it would be better if she left. She was going too anyway. If she went with Stella she would be with someone that knew how to deal with trouble if it came up. What would happen to Ceecee if she left? She would not leave her with their father that she was sure of. Maybe she could talk Stella into taking both of them, there had to be a way she could convince her to do that.
Kaycee had to try and make a deal with Stella to take them both. She rode back to the compound to confront Stella, either she took both of them or she would not leave.
It was dark by the time she reached home. She saw Ceecee from a distance walk into the large hangar.
Kaycee called to her but she must not have heard her. Kaycee rode over to the hangar and dismounted. She peeked inside to see what was going on. There was Stella talking to Kaycee’s father along with Ceecee. They were looking at some blueprints for the cargo ship that had been under repair in the hangar for some time now. Kaycee didn’t quiet understand what was going on so she moved a little closer to see if she could hear what they were talking about. She was shocked to see Stella and Ceecee suddenly begin to laugh and even her father was smiling a little. Suddenly Stella turned and looked right at Kaycee. Stella smiled and motioned to Kaycee to come closer. Kaycee didn’t know what to make of this whole situation so with curiosity getting the better of her she carefully walked to the table.
“It’s okay, it’s really okay.”said Ceecee and took Kaycee by the hand in reassurance.
She could see the ship designs on the table, they showed a major refit of the ship that would make it into a flying repair station. This would be a major job that would take about a year to complete.
“We’re going on a big adventure, bigger than anything we could have dreamed of.”Ceecee said smiling.
“What are you talking about?” Kaycee asked Ceecee.
Stella answered for her.” I am on a mission for the Rebellion, I have been sent to find allies and resources to fight the Empire. I’ve hired your father and sister to oversee the modification of this cargo ship into a mobile repair facility.”
“Guess who the captain’s going to be? Me!” Ceecee said gleefully.
“Once this ship is finished Ceecee will meet up with us sometime next year and join the others we have enlisted in the cause.” Stella said to Kaycee.
“Why can’t I stay with Ceecee, why do I have to go with you now? She asked suspiciously.
“We need to talk in private Kaycee, will you walk with me?”Stella asked as she put her hand on her shoulder.
Kaycee looked at Ceecee.
“Go ahead, it’s fine.” Ceecee responded before she was asked.
Stella lead Kaycee back to the house and upstairs to her room. Everyone was working on getting things ready for the refit of the ship so the house was empty.
Stella sat Kaycee on the bed and closed the door.
“I’ve known for a long time now we would meet Kaycee.”Stella said as she looked out the window.
“For months now I have been having a dream or premonition about two women, both of them have blonde hair.”Stella said.
“One will cause my death, the other will give me my life back, and I ask myself, which one are you Kaycee?” Stella pulled back her poncho and put her hand on her light saber.
Kaycee was shocked to see Stella was a Jedi knight. She wasn’t anything like she thought a Jedi would be like. She was scarey and dark.
“I think you are the one that will save me Kaycee that is why I want you to come with me, I need you Kaycee. When I saw you after the crash the first thing I noticed was your hair. My first instinct was to shoot you because I was afraid I would run into the woman that causes my death before I met the one that would save me.”Stella sat on the bed next to Kaycee.
“I would never hurt you Stella.”Kaycee said nervously.
“I believe that with all my heart, we have a destiny together can’t you feel it?”Stella asked.
“When I first saw you I was drawn to you, I don’t know why but I was.”said Kaycee.
“So, will you come with me?”Stella asked.
“Yes I will Stella I will come with you.” Kaycee said smiling.
“Wonderful, I will show you things you never knew existed . We will have adventures that you will tell your grandchildren about.”Stella was uplifted and seemed less dark in her mood.
“Why didn’t you tell me you were a Jedi when we first met, I would have been a lot more willing to listen to you.”Kaycee asked.
“I didn’t tell you because I’m not a Jedi, I never finished my training.”Stella said.
Kaycee couldn’t figure this woman out, just when she thought she knew her she would always make that sudden turn and you were back to square one again.
“I couldn’t accept some of their beliefs and attitudes towards some things so I ended my training. There are many of us that wound up half trained because of one thing or another but after the empire started to kill the Jedi masters and hunt them down a lot of padawans were left without full training.”Stella said.
“Besides, in these times there are too many bounty hunters after our kind to let people to know.”
“What will we do first?” asked Kaycee.
“Well I’m not quiet sure, I’ve spent the last few years smuggling and have made some contacts with some very shady customers, do you want to meet some?”Stella asked.
Kaycee sat back for a moment, this is it, a real adventure into space. No more reading about distant worlds and alien races, now it was happening.
“Yes, yes I would.”Kaycee smiled at Stella from ear to ear.
“Wonderful, you won’t regret it.”Stella said.
If you have enjoyed these stories please check out my first all original book series at Amazon.com. The title is Beyond the Crystal Heaven.
Once again thank you for your support.
Last Updated (Tuesday, 10 September 2013 01:41)