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Alice Bee and Christopher Levy.
One year after the Battle of Yavin (36:4:1) in the Alderaan system: Delaya (Sea Islands).
Ewwiekewwieikkie, Grand Moff Claudius Rodney, Lady Drusilla Rodney, and Commander Sierra Rodney.

Ewwiekewwieikkie hurried through the sandy shores of the sea islands with incredible excitement. "Hot sand! Hot sand!" she cried, as she began lifting her feet off the ground in frantic motions. She looked around before remembering that water was cold and moments later, despite being told not to, she ran directly into the ocean and did a belly flop. Unfortunately for her, her belly flop was directly on top of the Delayan sea cow that had taken up residence near their home. "Ahhh!" she screamed in a panic, not sure what it was. "It's a monster!" she cried out, looking everywhere for Sierra, as she began to thrash about like the scared, helpless creature that she was. A moment later she fell off the equally frightened sea cow, becoming submerged in the water, drenching her fur, and ruining the sun dress she had on for the beach picnic where she had been brought to see her new home.

Sierra was happy. The whole family had left the castle...even Drusilla, though it was unlikely that she would ever leave the tent. At least she was getting some fresh air, right? Sierra was still applying sunscreen to her mostly exposed back when she heard Ewwiekewwiekkie's screaming. She was out of the tent and down the beach in half a second. "Ewwiekewwiekkie!?" She yelled, spotting the squib panicking in the ocean. At first glance, it looked like she was drowning on her belly. Sierra had made it the rest of the way down the beach and into the water before she realized that sea Betsy was there. The sea cow had been baptized in blue hair. She grasped Ewwiekewwiekkie and brought her closer to the sand where her feet could reach the water. Her hands brushed all over the girl to make sure she was alright. "Are you okay, Ewwiekewwiekkie?" The sea cow approached, but was smart enough to remember what going too close to the sand meant. Sierra wrapped an arm around the squib, pointing out the sea cow. "There's nothing to be afraid of. See?" She reached her free hand out, letting it brush over the top of the sea cow. "There, there. It's okay..." She soothed the beast. "This is Betsy," she told Ewwiekewwiekkie. "Your father and I saved her when she became stranded on the beach. She's a friend. Don't be afraid. Why don't you touch her?"

"It's gonna eat you!" Ewwiekewwieikkie screamed, as she tried to get away, but was much too weak to escape Sierra's grasp. "Oh no!" she clamored, as the creature came all the more near. "Eee"! She squealed as she watched Sierra reach for the sea cow, fully expecting it to leap up and eat her hand. Her yellow eyes closed tight as she imagined what she expected to be her last moment alive. "That's not a Betsy, silly!" she said, as she opened her eyes, not entirely sure why they were still alone. "Hmm..." she said looking at Sierra and then sea cow, then back to Sierra, then back to the sea cow, then back to Sierra. Her short, fur covered arm reached out towards the sea cow apprehensively. She began to tremble and pulled her hand away, still scared. "Erm..." she groaned, reaching out again, and this time allowing her hand to briefly touch it. "Slimy!" she squealed, pulling her hand back away again. She then moved her hand forward a third time, pressing it down upon the sea cow. She then began to giggle loud, squealing with delight, and shaking in Sierra's grasp.

Sierra slowly demonstrated that the sea cow wasn't going to eat them. She ran her hand gently down the length of the creature's back. Still, she wasn't entirely sure how her adopted daughter was going to handle it. Anticipation fell over them as Ewwiekewwieikkie looked back and forth and back and forth. "It's okay, I promise. Sea cows don't really eat meat. The only meat they like is teeny, tiny fish." She hoped that would soothe the girl. Moving to the islands was an opportunity to teach all of her and Claudius' children about the beauty of nature. Sierra fell silent as Ewwiekewwieikkie's furry hand touched the sea cow. Betsy wasn't shy at all. Apparently the creature trusted them.

For Sierra, the scene unfolding in front of her was so touching. She could physically feel Ewwiekewwieikkie's excitement through her shaking body. She couldn't stop herself from laughing along with her. "It is slimy, huh?!" The sea cow was growing more excited. It happily paddled its flippers against the water until it made a small wave that collided with the girls, soaking them once more. Sierra laughed harder, pushing her hair out of her face. "Do you want to build a sand castle, Ewwiekewwieikkie?" Sorry Ewwie, you get to feel the force of Sierra's newly discovered motherhood.

"This is *not* a yacht," said the shrill voice of Drusilla Rodney as she sat in the back of a small boat, with an umbrella in her hand to shield her from the harsh sun. The tiny craft had no crew, nor even a cabin, and she found it more insulting than had she simply been given nothing. Ever since she had been forced to return the space yacht she purchased she had been pouting insufferably, and she was positively aghast that *this* was the best her father could do. "I am not happy, daddy," she said, crossing her right leg over the left, and turning her head to look away from him. She let out an incredible huff, folding her arms in front of her chest as she began an epic pout that would most likely continue through most of the day.

Claudius was captaining the small boat, as he made his way around the island to where he expected to find Sierra and Ewwiekewwieikkie. He wanted to show everyone the house and this small boat was the best method of getting Ewwiekewwieikkie out there dry. When he saw the commotion with his adopted Squib daughter he very nearly ran over the sea cow with the boat, but turned at the moment and ran aground on the sandy beach. "Ahoy the beach," he said, from beneath his old sea captain's helmet. He was trying his best to have a family day in the islands, but Ewwie was a mess and Drusilla had entered into one of her world famous pouts. Still, he *was* trying.

Drusilla had one of those voices that carried. Sierra was aware of her youngest being unhappy. It had taken time for her to string together a plan that was perfect for Drusilla. She felt that a trinket or a pretty dress wasn't going to be enough. She was standing back on the shore with Ewwie. Both of them were soaked. Sierra's sun dress clung to her body. She was going to have to think creatively to decide the best way to dry the Squib's hair. She moved to greet Captain Claudius, who made her swoon in an entirely different way than the sight of Ewwie meeting Betsy. "Ahoy, Captain." It probably wouldn't be surprising that both girls were wet. It was bound to happen. Sierra had thought ahead to bring Ewwie a dry dress to wear if she got cold. After flashing her husband a smile, she turned her eyes on Drusilla.

"I was going to save this for your birthday... But..." Sierra let her voice drag in a pathetic attempt to build the teenager's excitement. "I got you tickets to see the Max Rebo Band. They will be playing at a resort on Spira. I figured we could spend some time at the spa there before going to the concert." Maybe they could have a little much needed bonding time. She had heard Drusilla listen to the band enough to know she loved them. Sierra only hoped this helped make her happy again. She looked over to Claudius. It was hard to suddenly mother two teenaged girls and a Squib.

Drusilla's mildly unpleasant boat ride turned into a shipwreck, causing her to lurch forward uncomfortably. "Papa, you are too old to be driving," she said, dismissively, as she turned her nose up at the man, and prepared to rise. She lifted her skirt and daintily stepped into the shore, making sure to not allow the delicate lace to become wet. Her eyes lit up when she heard the name Max Rebo, but she did allow her words to meet the exuberance of her soul. "That will be ... acceptable," she said, after searching for the word. Inside she was quite excited about the trip to Spira and the concert. "It's a pity that we won't be able to take the yacht to the concert. *Quite* a pity," she said, as she gave a sideway glance to Sierra and her father. "Ick. Good luck drying *that*," she said, smugly, as she looked towards Ewwiekewwieikkie. She was quick to move up the shore into the shade provided by the lush tropical fauna. She sat down on a folding chair, rather than allowing herself to become soiled by the sand below.

Sierra had set her expectations low. Pleasing Drusilla was not something she had excelled at so far. If Sierra hadn't been there, it was likely that the yacht would still exist...or maybe it would have never been. Drusilla's eyes lit up. That was enough of a reaction for Sierra, backhanded comment and all. She sighed, watching her youngest work hard to avoid getting sandy on the beach. Only Drusilla, she thought. Only Drusilla.

"After the concert, she'll forget about the yacht." She promised her husband as she slid her hand in his. "I'm glad we all had the opportunity to come out here together. I want everyone to be on board with this move." Their home was beginning to look like a home. The droids never stopped working with Claudius and Sierra within earshot a majority of the time. The contractors may finish the house on time...if not early!

Claudius was still recovering from beaching the craft when he heard his wife reveal the concert and trip to his youngest daughter. He wished that she had been more appreciative of it, but that would perhaps be asking too much of Drusilla. He suspected that if he prodded it that she would only cause a further rift between them. "I hope so," he replied to his wife, quietly, as he welcomed her hand. "I was hoping she would not get wet," he commented, as he looked at Ewwie who was both dripping wet with matted hair and covered in sand. "Is that ... is that the same sea cow?" he asked, as he looked at the creature that he nearly collided with. He doubted there were not enough blow dryers on the entire planet to solve this mess. A professional grooming would surely be needed.

"As was I. She was gone in a blink of an eye, literally tackling the water right before my eyes." Sierra sighed. It was questionable how she would ever keep Ewwie's fur clean. Short of shoving the girl into a bubble, Sierra was going to need to think of an actual solution. "I-I'm pretty sure it is. The sea cow seems to have learned. Its gotten close, but not close enough to get stranded again." She started guiding him towards the blanket where the picnic foods were sprawled out. She had purposely spent some time in the kitchen making Ewwie healthy sweets. You could sneak vegetables into cookies and get away with it. Hahaha! "How was your ride with Drusilla?" She asked before they were within earshot.

"Daddy!" Ewwiekewwieikkie shrieked, before unceremoniously climbing over the sea cow to get to the man who rescued her during the Clone Wars. Her yellow eyes widened sharply before she wrapped her arms around him tightly, burying her head in his chest. The result to his sailor's uniform was catastrophic as she got it soaking wet, sandy, and covered in blue fur ... but she neither noticed, nor cared. She was just happy to see him. "Daddy I got wet. And mommy number four nearly got eaten by a monster!" she squealed, with her less than polite nickname for Sierra coming to the forefront.

Before Claudius could answer his adopted daughter was upon him, turning him into a wet mess instantly. He looked over Ewwie's shoulder helplessly at Sierra, but he had not the heart to push her away. "Did she really?" he asked, feeling a bit uncomfortable by what she had called her. When the hug finally broke he had the opportunity to look over himself, which resulted in a tremendous sigh. "Well, I was overdressed anyway," he said, before unbuttoning his shirt to rid himself of it. He wished Jelena could be here for this, but with the increased Imperial presence on the planet it was unwise. Eventually he was stripped down to just his bathing suit, although he left the cap on. The uniform was best destroyed than cleaned given the state it was currently in.

Awww, Ewwiekewwieikkie was so cute! She smiled happily at the two of them as Claudius' uniform was assaulted. With Ewwie, you eventually had to learn to embrace the blue, furry accents that she added to one's clothing. Even her dress still had blue fur clinging to it. She was elated to be called 'mommy', but the word was paired with less pretty ones. *Mommy number four*. Ouch. For Ewwiekewwieikkie, it was innocently true. For Sierra, it felt like a punch in the gut. She wondered what Drusilla called her when she wasn't around. She wondered if she would ever not be foreign to the girls, or if she would only be a mother to Bruce. At least Jelena still liked her, right? She moved further up the shore, deciding that she was suffering from a case of hangry hormones and taking Ewwie's comment to heart because of it. She sat and began to pick at her food. "Is there something I can get you, Drusilla?"

"Yes," Drusilla said, simply, as she pulled down her glareshades to the tip of her nose to look at her stepmother with her eyes. "A yacht," she said, bluntly, before placing the glareshades back over her nose. She then looked away from the woman, taking a sip from her non-alcoholic drink, loudly, to make a point. Her eyes then descended to her hands examining her manicure, hoping that the sand would not damage them. She was quite dismissive of the whole situation, although she looked forward to the exclusivity of living in an off limits nature preserve. All of her city friends would be so jealous.

She grabbed a plate, preparing to add a bird-like amount of food to Drusilla's planet. Instead, the teenager used her question as an opportunity to dig under her skin. Sierra sighed, dropping the plate to the blanket. Why did she try to do anything nice for her family? Next to a golden yacht, little was going to help that situation. Sierra had been a damn fool to think otherwise. All at once, she needed space. Her swollen belly made for a good excuse. She rose, clutching her growing bump. By her body language, Claudius would know that she was suffering from another bout with morning sickness. She disappeared back into their tent to recuperate. Sitting on the edge of the bed, Sierra hid her face in her hands. Her past had been locked away behind a sealed door once more. That didn't make the present any less vindictive. As the girl's step-mother, she felt she should maintain a good relationship with them. Especially Drusilla, who was navigating her way through some of the crappiest years of life. In reality...she couldn't do it.

Claudius moved to stabilize his wife, who he could tell was feeling the ill effects of their future son. "Don't worry about her. You sit down," he said, sounding authoritative because of the hat he had on. He was careful to help her down onto the blanket where they could much easier enjoy their food. "It looks like they've gotten a lot done," he said, bringing his hand up above his eyes to shield them from the sun as he looked out onto the construction. "Ewwie seems happy," he said to her, trying to look for the positive. He was quick to take a bite out of one of the small sandwiches that had been prepared, blissfully ignorant to the fact that Ewwie had licked many of them to determine which she liked best.

Sierra's eyes flickered toward their future home. "It does. Did you threaten them?" She joked, doing her best to overlook the feelings of discomfort inside of her. She was smart enough to realize when her hormones were catching her better side. Her face turned towards his. She probably should have warned him about the sandwiches, which she had watched Ewwie lick earlier. It was entrancing. She was happy to be able to study the girl daily. As for Claudius, ignorance was bliss. Sierra kept to eating fruit, which likely had been licked as well. "She does. Fur problem aside, I think everyone is happy with the move. Even Drusilla." She leaned against him. The captain's hat was growing on her. She wondered what the chances were of her getting him to wear it *later*. Huehuehue.

"Me? Threaten them? Never!" Claudius replied, turning his head slowly to smirk at her. "Bribery however..." he said, quietly, before bringing his sandwich up to his mouth. He enjoyed it, despite its close encounter with his adopted daughter. "Are you sure you're up for this trip with Drusilla? She can be quite the handful," he warned her, before stretching out a bit on the blanket. He looked out at Ewwiekewwieikkie shaking off her water, causing loose fur, water, and sand to go flying in every direction. "Perhaps she needs a wetsuit," he suggested, before pouring himself a glass of starfruit juice. Fortunately, no one had contaminated that. "Do you..." he said, but then he realized he was speaking too loud and silenced himself, moving closer to her. "Do you know anyone in the ISB who might have information on this Governor they've sent us?" he asked, more quietly, so that his children could not hear. He hated using dirty tricks, but he needed every bit of an advantage that he could get.

She looked at him suspiciously, then laughed. "Ooh. Threatening is a no-go but bribery is fine? I need to jot that down for your biography." Family germs didn't scare her away from the sandwiches. She picked one up and bit into it. "Yes, I'm up for it. It will be the kind of vacation where I come back needing a vacation from vacation. I only hope that it actually goes well." Ewwie reminded her of a wet dog with how violently she shook. Thankfully, she was far enough away that the only victim was the sand and the watchful sea cow. "I was thinking a ball..." Sierra said, making a round motion with her hands. "Don't worry. I'll take care of her fur once we're finished here." She sunk down on the blanket. All the time in the sun had dried out her dress already.

Claudius' quiet words had her thinking...did she know anyone? She understood where he was coming from. She had thought about confronting Zara and Marcus as to how *exactly* they had gotten so many of Arden Zevrin's videos. She sensed that there was a slicer in the family. Sierra only opted against it because Zara was so pregnant. If something happened, she didn't want her brother or her sister-in-law to suffer. She rolled to her side so she was close to him. They could converse between themselves silently. "Yes. There's someone I went to the academy with who might be able to help us. She wouldn't rat us out to Zevrin either. Trust me on this. I'll contact her later. Maybe we can find out something useful."

"No, no. In my biography simply say that I gave an inspirational speech that motivated them to work faster," Claudius said with a laugh, enjoying the banter and intimate time with his young wife. "Very well. After your vacation you and I will take a vacation. Maybe to the sea islands. We haven't been there in for-" he stopped short, with a wink, before moving up from the blanket to check on both Ewwie and Drusilla. Suffice that they were both well for the time being, his attention again turned to Sierra and the important matter they were discussing. "Please. Do contact her. If this Governor gets out of line I want something on him. I hate to play these games these others play, *but* this is for my family and my people," he stressed to her, with a firm nod of his head.

Sierra laughed harder. "Yes sir." Eeee. She relaxed, releasing whatever tension she was still holding onto. Her cheeks reddened when he mentioned *them* taking a vacation. He knew exactly where she wanted to be too. Sierra smiled. "You know me so well. The sea islands are my favorite place to be." She preferred the privacy of it as opposed to going out in the city. The HoloNet reporters always managed to catch her bad sides. When they say the camera adds twenty pounds, then really mean a million! Besides, she wasn't entirely sure she was above having a Zarcus-like scandal. She looked over her family. Sigh. They had to do this more often. It was nice to be together without worrying about someone trying to kill them. She understood the severity of the situation with the Governor. "I'll do my best to make sure we're ready for the worst. Do you know anything about him? I'd never heard of the man before." She felt just as protective over their family and their people. Sierra wanted to help Delaya see better days. She worried that the Governor would stop that.

Claudius was a wise enough strategist to know not to comment on the subject of his wife's weight. Instead, he set to the task of finishing his sandwich as a convenient way to avoid that pitfall. Conveniently he was finished by the time the subject turned to the Governor. "No. Never met him before. Never heard of him before. One of these younger officers on the rise," he mused, in frustration about the situation. "But in time *we* will," he said, before rising off the blanket to check on Ewwiekewwieikkie. Her fur was not taking well to the heat, sand, and water. He wondered if they would need to hire a full time groomer following this move. He turned to see Drusilla laughing at him from beneath her canopy, and he took satisfaction that at least his family was together. He would remember days like this when he was old and in his last days.

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