Using FanFiction for Writing Practice & Cinematic Therapy

fanfictionIf you’ve read my blog you know I’m a massive Star Wars fan.  Though I’ve seen the film twice I’m still not sure of how I feel about The Last Jedi. I think my main source of distress is simply not understanding how the story progresses from here. To me, The Last Jedi felt to much like a conclusion and an unsatisfactory one at that. So, to kill two birds with one stone I decided to try my hand at FanFiction – in part for writing practice and also to double as a cinematic therapy session.  I hope you enjoy!

 

Imagined Opening Scene to Star Wars Episode IX

Roughly one year after Luke Skywalker’s stand against the First Order the decimated Resistance was fighting to survive. Aboard the commandeered Resistance command ship aptly named the Holdo, the hunted band of rebels was constantly on the move. The First Order’s grip had solidified across the galaxy and very few planets of consequence remained independent and unoccupied. Those regions ignored by the First Order were the areas the Resistance sought refuge. In the far reaches of the galaxy they had found relative safety, assuming they didn’t stay in any one place for long. A vast and unrelenting network of bounty hunters had been activated by the First Order’s lucrative reward for any information leading to the capture of the remaining group. Word of a mysterious force wielding girl sent by the Resistance to assassinate Supreme Leader Snoke had spread like wildfire. Snoke’s death had incensed the First Order and they vowed to make an example of all that remained of the Resistance. The rewards offered were so lavish that bounty hunters were collaborating, a thing practically unheard of in the past. The Resistance was in a precarious position.

Unfortunately for General Hux word of Luke’s miraculous stand against Kylo Ren and the Resistance’s subsequent escape had sparked some hope throughout the galaxy, particularly among those regions deemed unworthy of much attention by the First Order. While General Organa’s call for aid on Crait yielded almost no support, pockets of brave citizens were now offering some aid when and where it could be spared. Spies lurked among these brave beings however, and it was often difficult to ferret out friend from foe. The Resistance relied both on Rey’s instincts and Rose Tico’s knowledge of some of the Outer Rim societies for safe passage through little known worlds.

Rey and Rose were such a successful combination that they began scouting regions where the populace may be sympathetic to the Resistance and more likely to join the cause. Once an area had been identified as having potential for new recruit’s societies a small group of Resistance fighters led by Poe Dameron were charged making initial contact to gauge interest. After a few shaky initial attempts the team had developed great instincts for selecting the right spot to engage. Numbers in the Resistance began to rise, though more slowly than General Organa would have a liked. At this rate, it would take years before the Resistance would be able to challenge the First Order, if ever. Poe and Finn were eager to boost the numbers in their ranks and Rey was beginning to worry they were becoming sloppy in their approach.

On the latest of these such missions Rey and Finn found themselves standing in the back corner of a dimly lit cantina nestled in the maze of tunnels of a nondescript lower city on a planet whose name Rey could not remember. It was then twelfth such mission in nine days and she was exhausted. In that, she was not alone. Here, hungry and overworked mining workers were listening to Rose’s story of their miraculous escape from Crait. The purpose of the story was to ignite inspiration in those brave and willing to attend the meeting. As Rey surveyed the crowd she realized that there were a few able-bodied men and women who could make fine additions to the Resistance, provided they were properly motivated. Motivation and encouragement was where Poe came in. He was a natural.

Finn watched the center of the room with an obvious sense of pride. There two of his favorite people in the galaxy were providing hope to a place where there previously was none. Even in his exhausted state Finn could appreciate the moment.

“They are so good together.” He remarked smiling.

“Yes,” Rey agreed at bit more cautiously. Though this gathering seemed to be going well she couldn’t shake the sense of dread that had been growing since she first woke that morning. She scanned the room looking for something, anything, that looked suspicious but nothing appeared amiss.

“I mean look at the crowd, they’re enthralled!”

Rey could only nod in agreement. Though the crowd was relatively small, maybe twenty or so gathered, Rose and Poe had their undivided attention.

“Maybe you should get up there as well. Tell them about your experiences with the First Order.”

“They don’t need to hear from me to know how they would suffer under continued rule by the First Order. Just look at their planet, stripped of all their natural resources for little return.”

“True, but I meant your escape. That’s quite a tale.”

“If they want a story you should tell them about your time with Luke Skywalker. Imagine what they would do if they realized a Jedi is in their midst.”

“I barely spent any time with Luke.” Not for the first-time Rey felt a pang of real regret. If only she hadn’t run off, perhaps things might have ended differently. “Besides, I’m no Jedi.”

Finn rolled his eyes. “Rey please, I’ve seen your abilities.”

“I’m strong with the Force but there is still so much I don’t know. That I don’t understand.”

“All you do is pour over those books. You’ll figure it out.”

“It’s not the same as having a teacher. Much of what I’ve read is so hard to comprehend and– “

Rey froze mid sentence. Something at the edge of her consciousness was vying for her attention, something she had blocked out for almost a year. But now it was coming. She could feel it.

“Ooh…” Rey lowered her head into her hands. It was taking all of her dissipated strength to keep her mind blank, but something just as strong was pushing back. She knew was it was, she had to make it stop.

“Rey?” Finn reached over and touched her shoulder, concern etched across his face. “Are you OK?”

Rey gripped Finn’s forearms as she tried to steady herself. As she looked up to meet his questioning gaze a deep voice screamed inside her head.

“GET OUT! NOW!”

 

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