Title: The Sprout of Dagobah

Author: Lea-El

Era: Before the Saga, 900 B.B.Y.

Description: My history this is. - Yoda

Disclaimer: Many standard years ago I entered the world of Master Lucas. I have never completely left it, though it does not belong to me. I am just glad that we are allowed to visit our friends there from time to time. Especially since that is usually where my daughter is to be found. If it hadn't been for a Sci-Fi geek, that read the book, we might never have found our vacation home there.

Grammar warning: English teachers beware. Grammar freaks run. This is a Yoda story. Use of English sentence structure will be suspended for the length of this story. You have been warned. I will not be responsible for damages to you ability to speak correct English. Proceed at your own risk.


The Sprout of Dagobah

Prologue

"Yara, rest you must." Yav pleaded with his wife.

"Much to do, ceremony soon." Yara said as she flittered around the food prep room.

"Yamer, the color of wisdom you are, chide Yara. Rest she must, heavy with child." Yav begged the mother of all in the root.

"Yara, right Yav is. Grow on move, sprout will not. Now your time is here, rest you must. Coming soon, your sprouts will. Hands enough there are, work soon done." Yamer chided

"Reluctant am I, energy abound, much to do. For sake of seed, obey I will." Yara conceded.

"Follow me, my beloved one, to sit on arbor." Yav escorted the much pregnant Yara to the porch of the family home, to the basket swing made of cudzar vines. A parade of women started arriving to help prepare for the ceremony to come. Days of cooking were required, material had to be woven and sprout clothes made. The young men carved cradles and other furniture and toys for the new members of the extended family. The older men carved out the new rooms for the younglings. The time of birthing was soon to come.

Spring was the time of birthing when the trees awoke from the winter; mild as the Dagobah winters were, it was still a reason to celebrate, especially for an arboreal society. Each fall harvests are collected, trees are pruned, new plants are planted and the Ceremony of Life where all Yendell children are conceived took place. Each spring the leaves were starting to bud out, small white flowers were popping out everywhere. The bees were producing the next crop of honey, and the selected Yendell women were getting heavy with child or as heavy as a two-foot tall woman could get.

In the nearby meadows small mammals were starting to wake up and scamper about, looking for the delicacies of spring. Dagobah was covered with huge ancient trees towering hundreds of feet into the air. Roots from the trees rose out of the shallow lakes that were filled with silver, gold and copper colored fish. The roots were like huge cypress knees into which the Yendell homes were carved, each knee lived a family, each tree lived an extended family and intricate. Just as delicate bridges connected the trees, all communities were interconnected, so all the people of Dagobah were one large family.

Each spring the Ceremony of Lights when billions of lightening bugs hatched and turned the whole planet into a light show unequaled in the universe, a select few delivered the fruit of the womb. The young and old alike celebrated the new arrivals with dancing, playing flute-like instruments and feasting.

Two small pale yellow infants, one male and one female were born to each mother. Each infant was six inches long, covered with infant fur, which they lost most of as they grew, until at advanced age only wisps on top of their head remained. As the Yendell grew they changed colors from pale yellow at birth to pale green at about five, to moss green at adulthood and finally to a grayish green at advance age. Each extended family took great pride in the new arrival, helping in the care of the new arrival. Each age group had a different responsibility as the child grew, ending with the oldest men training them in the arts of what some call the Force. Every child on Dagobah is Force sensitive and go from amusing themselves as infants, Force batting rattles safely suspended over their cribs, to moving large vines to make the suspension bridges at adulthood.

"Yav, good job doing you are." Teased Yaren, father of the root.

"Getting Beloved to rest, not job for faint of heart." Yav answered with his bravest voice.

"Prepared are you for naming ceremony. Any hints about your choice." He teased back knowing it was forbidden to reveal the names before the ceremony.

"Forbidden to say, know you do. Before law, much debating, caused many lives lost." Yaren chided.

oOo

The day for the Ceremony of Lights had finally arrived Yara was awaken by the sound of the flutes playing in the background, the smell of cooking and the stirring of her belly. The life in her wanted to come out to celebrate too. Soon Yamer, the mother of all in the root, came in with a cup of herb tea. "Ease the pains and encourage the sprouts to come this will." She explained. "Now, wait we must."

Yamer made herself comfortable in a rocking chair near the bed and started to 'yamer'. "Remember my Ceremony of Planting I do. Yaren wore robes color of rust, never before seen rust color, on someone I knew. Cute as a bug was he. The color of his robes, all the leaves were, as if whole world knew how special he was. A ring of damar blossoms, I wore on my head. To the meadow, my father walked me. The wedding song every one sang as we passed the feast greatest in years it was. Dance till morning light we did. Sprouted before high sun I was."

"Mother!" Yara called in distress.

"Yes, Yara, problem in producing." Came a concerned mother into the room.

"Mother, something Yamer could be doing, is there. Other wise, I shall do what no Yendell has ever done! No more stories of how cute Father Yaren was, can I stand." Yara whispered a plea to her mother.

"Understand I do." She whispered back. "Mother Yamer, help I need in prep room. Young cooks trying to mess up the stew." Mother played defenseless to the Mother of all in the Root.

"Corral them I will, but who will watch Yara?" Yamer struggled to her feet, joints creaking.

"Here I will stay. Watch her I will." Yasn assured the Mother, closing the door behind her.

"Thanks, I owe you. Thought I would go mad. Father Yaren, cute ooooh." Yara shuddered at the thought of wrinkled, crooked, gray green Father Yaren being cute.

"Contractions close?" Yasn asked remembering her own delivery, but knowing better than mention it to her distressed daughter.

"Soon, before high noon." 'As all Yendell children are born,' Yara thought, 'why not look at sundial. Why ask about the obvious?' "Close eyes for moment, rest I want. Talking tiresome." Yara closed her eyes and pretended to sleep so she could get a moment of quiet. 'Talk so much when my turn to be Mother of the Knee, I will not.'

A nervous Yav peeked around the door. "How is she?"

"She's resting, everything is on schedule." Mother reassured him. "Soon a father you will be. Rest while you can. Busy you will be for years to come. Now out you go. Not want to see you now. Love you again after High Sun, she will." She reassured him again and closed the door again.

Right on time birthing-woman Yeni came in carrying a basket with her tools. Really it was carrying her extra outfit for the feast latter; it just made her look more official. In reality Yendell women had an easy delivery and most of the work was taken care of by nature.

"Arrival soon, Mother you will be." She said reassuringly.

'How much like Yamer she sounded.' Yara thought.

"Now to the birthing chair I will help you." Yeni said as she through back the covers and helped Yara to the birthing chair in the corner. She suddenly felt like she was in a crowded room and realized she was. Every woman in the tree clan was there to share in the joyous moment. She started to complain about it until she remembered being there for the first time she saw her first birthing. Also the sprouts decided she had other things to think about.

"The boy is first." Every one cheered a hushed hurrah so as not to frighten the child. A boy first was a blessing for the family since the first-born had rights and responsibilities to care for the tree. If the boy was born second he was married in to another sometimes far off community to promote a planet wide family.

The girl soon followed smaller and less furry. Each was wrapped in a warm blanket and carried out to the father of the root to see first so he could confirm the names he had chosen for the sprouts. He whispered the name to the child, if he didn't cry the name was set. Yet, it was only known to the Father of the Root and the child until the naming ceremony on the third day. Then they were passed on to the Father, who had been practicing holding melons so as not to drop the precious bundles when the time came.

Yav took his children into his arms and said "Yav, I am father of you, I am. Protector of you I will be. Confide in me you can. Love you always I will." This was the traditional blessing of the Yendell. Everyone sang the Yendell lullaby.

Sprout of Dagobah, … Yellow and small.

Sprout of Dagobah, … Cared for by all.

Sprout of Dagobah, … Family of all.

"You are a child of Dagobah. You are a child of mine." Everyone whispered to the now sleeping children as they were whisked back to their Mother for their first feeding, then the feast began.

On the third day of the celebration was the Naming Ceremony. All the family gathered in the meadow nearest their home tree. Yara and Yav followed Yaren and Yamer to the Damar Meadow. Each parent carried his or her gendered child. Each father of the root took turns naming the sprouts of their tree. When Yaren's turn came he stood proudly and called in a loud voice. A son Yoda, A daughter Yona. Then everyone sang the naming song.

Sprout of Dagobah, …Sprout of Yav

Sprout of Dagobah, …Sprout of Yara

Yoda you are… Yona you are…

Sprout of Dagobah, …Sprout of us all

The flute players played the song of Dagobah and everyone danced around the new parents and children.

"How come about, that Fathers of the Root to name the sprouts, Yamer." asked Yara mulling over the names of her children.

"No one knows, before the time of my Roots decision was made. Rumors of much debating, decided Father of Root name, no imagination, now only Y names. Ready for Z, R, anything, I suggested to Yaren. Yaren just shook head, go for walk. Could be worse, my brother named Yamic." The two women stood there for a moment thinking of the name then giggled.

oOo

The next three naming ceremonies had passed. The sprouts were up climbing about the nursery. Yendell babies were arboreal loving to climb in the safety of the nursery forest, special young trees grown just for them. As of lately one the occupants had started escaping.

As Yara sat preparing beans for preservation, she looked up to see Yaren coming up the bridge holding his arm out at an odd angle. As he got closer she saw what he was holding one dripping Yoda. "Good thing fish not eat Yendell or fish food he would be!"

"Sorry Father, watching him I was. How he escaped, I know not. Why I know not. Just started last week. How to stop I know not."

"Tell you how to stop it I can. Last resort, works every time." Yaren said not amused by the young ones antics, handing him to his mother.

oOo

Yav came home from working on the community meeting hall. Scooped up his sprouts and tossed them up in the air. Holding them he asked "Yoda, gloomy you look?"

Yara piped up from the prep room, "At his claws, you should look." Yoda had his hands tucked in the folds of his robe. "See them I must, Yoda." Yoda sheepishly pulled them out and showed them to Yav. "So out the nursery, you climbed again. Warned you were. So much hurry to travel. Where you going?"

Baby Yoda shrugged his shoulders and pointed up. "Lights"

Yara said. "Yaren says, to the meadow he was trying to go. Remember took him for the Ceremony of Naming and showed him the night lights we did."

"Night lights are you looking for." Yav asked. Yoda's face lit up and he nodded vigorously. "Stop climbing out nursery and to meadow I will take you. Lights we will see on day of rest. Now go play with Yona." Yoda looked at Yona and frowned she was playing with her dolls.

oOo

On the day of rest Yav propped Yoda up on his shoulders and strolled to the meadow. Yona was invited but preferred to play with her dolls.

"Where you going to?" asked Yaren.

"To the meadow to see the night lights, the reason for Yoda's escapes we have discovered." Yav answered.

"You showed him the night lights last week." Came back a puzzled Yaren.

"Promised if he stopped escaping, to meadow we would go, see night lights on the day of rest." Yav answered. "If it stops his escapes, worth the time it is."

They watched as the night fell and the night-lights appeared. Yoda's joy grew as the lights popped out of the blackness. "Been told I have the lights are lands like Dagobah. Far away so appear small. Live on them people could. Take long time to travel to. Someday see them maybe you will."

Yoda smiled and nodded vigorously. "Yes, Yes"

oOo

Yoda age 12

Yaren watched as his young pupil performed his task lacing the vine sprouts into toy bridges. "Concentrate Yoda you must. That bridge would not hold Yamer, she does not bob like a sprout anymore. Fish would not like her falling in the water. Stink oil she puts on joints, make fish fleeing." Yoda laughed at the thought of the Mother of the Root bobbing in the water like a sprout and the fish fleeing in horror.

"Confess, about Lights you were thinking. Never mind on what you are doing. Always lights you are thinking. Live on them you would." Yoda smiled at the thought of living on one of the lights.

oOo