Chapter 1: Exclusive message
18 ABY – thirteen years after Grogu leaves with Master Skywalker
Costing along the Hydian Way the old pre-Empire space ship, the Òrìşà, pass communication beacons. Turning on the holo pad, multiple popup messages blink ready, tucked below the advertisement of multiple planets, and grab in goes of spaceports a small image captures the interest of the pilot. Hitting the Mythosaur, the screen displays the buffering bar before the blue image fills in displaying the imposing image of the Manda'lor. The message is in Mando'a, the translation converter link doesn't light.
This is a message to all Mandalorians scattered throughout the galactic regions. For far too long we Mando'ade have stopped celebrating our strong, noble, and rich warrior heritage. Let it be known, the Festival of Shango will be held on our home planet within the Alaafin of Oyo region at the end of the rainy season. Join me and let us unite in song and celebration. Let us celebrate in the open, showing our pride and principled culture without remorse or apology.
A teal and black leather-clad hand squeezes the broad pilot's shoulder. "This is the opportunity you were seeking, Ba'Buir."
The old Corellian YT-1300f light freighter banks elegantly towards the main landing pad of the Yoruba providence.
"Princess are you sure this is a good idea? I feel like a gatecrasher." Leia hums as she scans the latest reports, rubbing her extended stomach. Luke places his hand on top of his sister's, "We were invited, Han. Besides it's Grogu's time with father."
Pressing down on the holo pad authorizing the last of her paperwork, Leia shifts again as the baby tap dances on her bladder. Sighing with a wince, "I think it is great timing, we get to experience the Mandalorian culture for three days."
Han looks over to his wife in confusion, "I thought this was a seven-day festival?"
Turning his sister's seat around Luke replies, "It is but we are only allowed to see the first days of celebration and cameration. All other ceremonies are private, clan members only, and recording is not allowed."
Looking up he spies a soft smile of gratitude on Leia's face as he messages her ankles and calves.
*Familiar beeps and whistles*
"Oh no, Master Grogu it isn't time to… the door opens as the little green menace rides R2D2 into the cockpit, closely trailed by the Solo twins, Jacen and Jaina.
Luke huffs, "Mind your language Artoo!"
The reluctant Manda'lor, Din D'jarin absent-mindedly listens to Koska the other advisors from the major houses rattle off the many protocols and niceties he needed to comply to when meeting the dignitaries of the Senate all the while walking to the secondary landing area. Fett strides down the ramp of the Slave 1, they clasp forearms in solidarity. Din looks over Boba's shoulder, sighing Boba replies to the silent question, "Fennec's back at the palace keeping things in check."
Releasing Boba's hand, Din turns to the government-approved official entourage, "Go and enjoy yourselves. I will be fine."
Reluctantly most of the entourage leaves, leaving the only Koska. Meanly she smirks at Boba "What are you doing here old man?" Boba chuckles, "Little girl, someone has to watch his back. And I don't trust you younglings to do that."
Her eyes cut to half-mast and her body strains not to tackle the 'old man'. She was going to make him pay for that later. Much later behind a closed locked door with lots of floor space.
Ignoring the thinly passive, aggressive bickering they call foreplay Din makes his way to the main landing pad.
Quickly the trio makes their way to his main goal of the day, retrieve his son. And maybe see Solo's face when he sees Boba.
So, what he's feelin' a little mean right now.
At the opening ceremony, the priestesses of Shango gave a special musical performance praising all the tribe's rulers throughout its history. It was sorrowful as many didn't know their true history. Too many years of hiding and just surviving left many gaps in their education. This was one thing Din swore he would rectify. Ignorance of culture would cause more bickering, strife, and mistrust. He needs all to be on the same page if they were to be a whole society instead of a patchwork of multiple listless tribes. Broken language and customs lead to the weakening of a people. Emperor Palpatine knew what strings to cut to decimate all those who he deemed as potential enemies and Mandalorians are a threat when provoked.
Sitting in his father's lap Grogu couldn't help but coos in delight. The music and fire dancers were nothing like has seen before. The energy of the crowd was intoxicating, awe, joy with an undercurrent of sadness. He taps his father's hands then turns to place his hands on his helmet. "Buir!" Din chuckles he can never get used to his child call out to him. Placing Grogu in his new beskar'gam lined pram, Din begins to explain the ceremony, the colors, sounds, and what the words meant.
As many leave the temporary stands, one family sits listing to their patriarch Alark, Clan of Adedayo. Tragedy and sorrow have lined his brown skin prematurely graying both his beard and hair far too early. Greedily he took in the performance, as it felt the music and dance balm his wary soul. With great abandon, this stoic man gushes of the days worshiping at the Temple of Rolling Thunder and Lighting. The prestige of becoming a part of the inner staff and performers. How his Ba'Buir was a part of the core performs in the fire dance and his Ba'vodu was a part of the choirs.
It is a good day for the Mando'a lost songs of their Maker was sung with tearful joy and renewed reverence.
Notes: "Hukaat'kama!" – What my six!
Buir – Mother/Father
Ba'Bauir – Grandmother/Grandfather
Ba'Vodu – aunt/uncle
beskar'gam – Mandalorian metal