The Last Mandalorian
Chapter One: The Warrior in Carbonite Part 2
Fandom: The Mandalorian / Pedro Pascal
Eventual Pairing: Din x Togruta!Female!Reader
Word Count: 3,400
Summary: A series that is a mixture of Mandalorian, Star Wars, ATLA, and my own imagination. The Imps have seized control of the majority of the galaxy, including your homeworld Shili. You and your sister Ahsoka have developed a daily routine despite the stormtroopers keeping your village imprisoned. One morning you make a startling discovery that will change the course of your lives forever.
Warnings: plot plot plot, mild descriptions of violence, worldbuilding, dialogue heavy, sloooooooooooooow burn – seriously, we’re just getting started so it’s gonna be a bit before feelings are involved, reader is 17 and Din is 19 so I’m going to warn this as underage even though nothing sexual or even vaguely romantic happens in this chapter.
Author Note: The plan right now is for there to be 3 parts of Chapter 1. Tumblr isn’t doing a good job notifying my taglist, so I apologize if I bother anyone reblogging this a few times trying to get it to work. Thank you everyone out there for each like, comment, ask and reblog! The support means the world to me 🥰
Cross-posted on AO3
The village is a small community with less than a hundred citizens living there total, yet it is visible from miles away due to the bright paints used to decorate the houses. Murals depicting the village’s history and its residents adorn every house with details added by each new generation so that no one is ever forgotten. Back when visitors would pass through, they would always compliment the village’s beauty, but there is nothing beautiful at all about the electric fence the Imps erected shortly after seizing control, emitting shocks harsh enough to kill.
Originally the stormtroopers said it was to protect the village from threats, but nobody believed the lie. The only threat to the community was the Empire. They don’t bother making up excuses anymore, now they like to remind everyone the whole village is their prisoner, usually by a show of violence so unbelievably malicious it stuns everyone into compliance.
There are some horrors time will never erase from your mind.
Juni trees grow beside the fence outside the perimeter, the only species of tree amongst the shrubbery and turu-grass, and they are tall enough for their thick orange branches to extend over the uppermost wire. In the mornings, Ahsoka climbs out your bedroom window, slides down the sloped roof of the house and leaps onto a nearby branch. You follow after her, trusting that she won’t let you fall when you stretch out your hand for her to catch you and lift you up using a bit of Force to give you a boost. The two of you sneak back inside the village using the same tree, only instead of leaping at the house, you drop the short fall onto the ground beneath. Five years and the stormtroopers haven’t caught onto your trick yet.
Except now the tree isn’t an option. Not when you both are half-carrying, half-dragging two-hundred pounds of flesh and metal.
Hiding behind a clump of coyal bushes, you and Ahsoka scout the entrance booth where a pair of stormtroopers dressed in their characteristic white armor stand guard, holding blaster rifles. There are others on patrol, walking along the fence and checking its integrity, gradually stepping further and further out of view, but they will be back eventually. Your window of opportunity is limited.
You adjust the warrior’s arm over your shoulders, quietly groaning when your muscles protest the heaviness. “What are we going to do? Stormies might share one brain cell, but they’re definitely going to notice this heap of metal we’re carrying. And as soon as they find out we don’t have passes, they’re going to start shooting.”
Passes are only given to a handful of the community’s traders each week. It is a three day ride on a repulsorlift speeder to the capital where they have a short span of time to sell their goods and then return home within the week with essential supplies. To ensure no one tries to run away, the Imps set up strict rules. If the traders are late, even if only by a few minutes or due to reasons outside their control, the rest of the villagers pay the price. Usually the punishment is a public beating, but sometimes the stormtroopers get creative and tie their chosen victims to a pole overnight by their head-tails.
Nobody, not even the younglings, sleep those nights.
“We’ll be fine,” Ahsoka answers, firm and confident, gaze fixed upon the gate. “Just follow my lead. I’ve got an idea.”
She doesn’t spare you a second to protest, stepping out into the open and forcing you to follow or else drop the warrior’s body.
The stormtroopers spot the three of you immediately, relaxed postures stiffening with alarm, and you have to remind yourself over and over to breathe, to not let them see any hint of the anxiety buzzing beneath your skin.
“Hold it right there!” One of the stormtroopers orders when the distance between you and them has shortened to a mere three feet. You freeze at once, heart pounding as fast as a thimiar’s seconds away from being eaten. A quick glance at Ahsoka reveals no fear in her expression. She stares at them indifferently, as if she is about to talk about the weather.
“Explain yourselves.” It is not a request.
You squirm, nearly knocking your head against the warrior’s bowed head, on the verge of losing your composure, when you notice Ahsoka lifting her arm.
“You will let us pass,” she says, adopting a suggestive tone while waving her hand in front of their visors.
They respond in unison, seemingly entranced. “We will let you pass.”
You bite your lip as you and Ahsoka pass between the stormtroopers and through the gate, not wanting to break the spell by letting loose the barrage of questions forming on your tongue. What your sister had done was as amazing as it was frightening. She had manipulated them with such confident ease you are certain this isn’t the first time she has performed the trick on someone.
“When did Aunt Shaak teach you that?”
“She didn’t,” Ahsoka replies lowly, casting a quick glance around. “I taught myself.”
Your skin prickles as you also become aware of the increasing number of eyes staring at you. With the sun fully awake and bringing morning light with it, several villagers are carrying on with their daily routines outside of their homes. Most of them seem a mixture of confused and concerned about the stranger, but you spy the Elders looking displeased by the new addition amongst their ranks.
You are not looking forward to being inevitably summoned and interrogated by them.
“How?” you ask, copying her hushed cadence. Then, a pulse of panic blooms in your chest. “Have you ever—?”
“No, I haven’t messed with your mind before. Never even considered it,” Ahsoka interrupts, sensing your worries. “I don’t practice often, but when I do it’s just harmless little suggestions. Like convincing Huno to give the younglings an extra sugar biscuit when he has some to spare or persuading Jaelee to go to bed early when I know she’s been overworking herself. To tell you the truth, I wasn’t really sure the trick would work on those bucket heads since I’ve never tried it on two minds at once before. Lucky us, right?”
You nearly trip over your own feet. “What?”
Is she being serious right now? They would be dead right now if her gamble hadn’t paid off.
Ahsoka pretends not to hear you, nodding her head towards the blue-painted house up ahead. “C’mon, Maar probably already knows we’re coming.”
Maar Vashee has been the village’s healer for a little over fifty years. The purple-skinned Togruta helped deliver you and Ahsoka, and was considered by your mother when she was still living to be a dear friend. Her connection to the Force is especially sensitive due to her intricate relationship with the flora of the planet, using various herbs and plants to create remedies, and as such she developed a type of sixth sense where she instinctively knows when her skills are needed.
Entering her home that doubles as her clinic, you find Maar had indeed anticipated your arrival and set up a cot to place the warrior upon. Once he is laid down, you roll your aching shoulders, biting back a wince as the movement irritates the headache lingering at the back of your head.
The warrior hadn’t made one noise the entirety of the trip bringing him here. Even now as he rests on the cot, his breaths are so quiet you would fear he wasn’t breathing at all if not for his chest moving. You touch his hand impulsively, laying yours over his gloved one. There is no response, not a twitch or spasm.
A sharp gasp of surprise has you whirling around, eyes landing upon Maar standing in the doorway between the clinic and her living quarters. She clutches a glass jar of spotted red herbs labeled nysillin against her chest, staring at the warrior like she is looking at a ghost.
“Maar,” Ahsoka calls out softly, coming to stand by your side. A long moment of silence passes before the older Togruta manages to drag her gaze away to focus on you and Ahsoka, green eyes a bit too wide-eyed and haunted. Your sister’s gentle tone remains when she inquires, “What’s wrong? Do you...do you know him?”
Maar chokes out a brittle noise sounding like a cross between a dry laugh and a derisive scoff. “Personally? No.” She moves closer to the cot, the white circular markings around her eyes softening with what you confusingly identify as sympathy. “I’ve heard stories of his kind though. Years ago, many considered the Mandalorians the only ones capable of defeating the Imperials.”
“Holy frak,” you gasp before you can stop yourself.
As a youngling, your mother used to tell you stories about the fiercest fighters in the galaxy known as Mandalorians. They lived on Mandalore and had a special connection with their weapons, a bond nobody else could understand or mimic, trained to handle guns and knives as soon as they could walk. They defended the galaxy from unlawful rulers and the threat of enslavement, unafraid to spill blood when they knew peace would follow. Your mother told you they never lost a battle. Defeat was a word unknown to them.
At least until—
“Mandalorians were wiped out during the Decimation of Alderaan,” Ahsoka interrupts your thoughts, voice pitched high with disbelief. “And the few who lived were hunted down shortly after. The Imps made sure there weren’t any left to challenge them.”
As if triggered, you recall a detail from your brain glitch, a thought that had crossed your mind when you were flying through the storm. You had been looking for Aldera, the capital of Alderaan.
It’s just a coincidence, you think. But a voice in the back of your head that sounds suspiciously like your Aunt Shaak counters, there are no coincidences.
And as much as you loathe admitting it, that voice is right. Having the image of a mudhorn slip into your brain shortly before you find a warrior—no, a karking Mandalorian of all people—with the same creature on his armor? It is too precise to be a coincidence. Your paths were meant to cross each other.
If only you had the slightest clue as to why.
Maar sets the jar down on a nearby table, then picks up the Mandalorian’s wrist to check his pulse. “That is what we all thought,” she agrees after a minute of counting has passed, dropping his hand. “His armor is characteristic of their kind. Nothing in the galaxy is as strong or valuable as their beskar. Let’s pray to Ai our beliefs about the Mandalorians’ extinction are mistaken,” she nods towards the unconscious warrior, “especially for his sake.”
Realization creates a sickening pit in your stomach.
Regardless of the status of his kind, when he wakes up his whole world is going to be flipped upside down.
Three hours later, not much has changed except the room is brighter, afternoon sunlight pouring in through the window, and smells sweet due to the bowl of herbs Maar left simmering on the table near the Mandalorian’s head, explaining the aroma will cure him of his hibernation sickness as he breathes it in.
“He’ll wake up when the marg sabls open tomorrow,” Maar told you with a gesture towards the potted red-and-pink flowers in the windowsill. They grow all over Shili, popular because they open their petals in a sunburst shape every morning.
Ahsoka comes and goes, blessedly not criticizing your decision to sit at the warrior’s bedside when you have a list of chores to complete—doubled now that you lost your bet with Ahsoka earlier. She intercepts curious younglings hoping to sneak a glimpse of the Mandalorian whose presence has become known throughout the village. Nothing stays a secret long in the community. Gossip spreads as quickly as colds and takes twice as long to get over.
If the stormtroopers catch on, the consequences will be disastrous. For once, Ahsoka shares your fears, admitting she isn’t capable of tricking a whole platoon.
“The Elders aren’t happy,” Ahsoka says in-between sips of bone broth. “They think it’s too dangerous having him here.”
You swallow your mouthful, shaking your head. “I think it’s the opposite.”
“What do you mean?”
Averting your gaze towards your lap, you scratch at an imaginary stain on your leggings. “Just a feeling I have.”
Ahsoka leans forward in her seat, pointing an accusing finger at you, causing your head to jerk back up. “The Force connected with you again, didn’t it? I knew you were acting weird before we found him.” She frowns, hurt flickering in her eyes. “Why didn’t you tell me?”
“Because I never wanted to be special, Ahsoka,” you reply honestly. “I never wished or prayed to have visions, to have these random details pop into my head, to feel others’ emotions so strongly it’s like I’m trapped inside their bodies. There is nothing cool or entertaining about it. It’s…” Your voice cracks embarrassingly, forcing you to take a pause. You inhale a shaky breath. “It’s terrifying.”
“I had no idea you were struggling so much,” your sister murmurs, voice soft with contrition.
“How could you when I didn’t even want myself to acknowledge that I was?” you counter, feeling as if a weight has been lifted from your shoulders as the truth sinks in. “I tried to ignore it all as best as I could. If not for meeting our friend over here,” you tilt your head in the Mandalorian’s direction, “I’d probably still be in denial. But I can’t ignore the Force this time. Not when the message is this important.”
“What is it?”
“We were meant to find him. To bring him back with us. I think—I believe he’s important. Remember what Maar said? About how people used to believe Mandalorians would beat the Empire?”
Ahsoka’s brow furrows incredulously. “You really think one warrior can defeat Moff Gideon’s army? The rebels have been trying for years and the Moff is always one step ahead.”
You can’t help deflating a bit, shoulders slumping. “Well when you put it like that…”
“Have you considered an alternative reason why he’s important?” she asks. When you don’t answer right away, she takes it as a cue to continue, “Maybe you’re right and he is going to change the galaxy for the better. But he could also be a warning. The Imps wiped out his kind, what if they plan to do the same to us?”
Your lips part to respond, only to close again wordlessly. You thought by accepting your brain glitches as messages from the Force they would become clearer, easier to understand. A lantern guiding you through this maze of darkness epitomizing your life.
But you have never felt more lost.
Falling asleep is a mistake.
You didn’t know this when you rejected Maar’s suggestion to head home and sleep in your comfortable bed instead of curling up on her spare cot that squeaks whenever you move. The prideful side of you believed it was best if you were the first face the Mandalorian saw when he woke up because he would remember you and the promise you swore. He would trust you to explain everything to him.
Within a second of waking up, you realize how naive you were to think you had even a shred of influence over him.
The sound of something shattering has you nearly tumbling off the side of the cot, jerking awake with a sudden burst of fear. You blink rapidly to clear the haziness of sleep from your vision, struggling to make sense of what you are seeing.
Pieces of Maar’s ceramic bowl litter the floor along with bits of charcoal and ash. Ahsoka and the Mandalorian stand on opposite sides of the room, staring each other down, poised to fight. The Mandalorian has a vibroblade clenched in his hand, while your sister crouches low, fists raised. You know Ahsoka can hold her own in a fight, even without the advantage of a weapon, but fear winds its way down your spine, cold and slimy, when you can’t help but notice how small she looks compared to him. Not only because he is a few inches taller, but because he also exudes an undeniable aura of intimidation: his unwavering silence, the skilled manner he wields his knife, even the sharp gleam of his beskar pieces reflecting the pale morning light has your chest tightening with dread.
The clinic’s lights flick on right as Maar announces her presence by cocking a blaster pistol. It is the Mandalorian’s own weapon, removed from his holster when Maar examined him earlier. “Alright,” she says to the room at large as she fully enters, dressed in her sleeping robe. “Let’s all settle down. Blood isn’t an easy stain to clean and I’d prefer it if none was spilt.”
You see the moment the Mandalorian decides to comply, shoulders loosening beneath the pauldrons and stance shifting from defensive to neutral, as he processes he doesn’t need to fight his way out of here. The vibroblade is sheathed within his right boot in one fluid motion and it is startling, truly, how quick he transforms from a dangerous threat to a potentially dangerous threat.
Ahsoka is reluctant to yield, staring him up and down for a drawn out moment that does little to soothe your frayed nerves. Only when Maar pointedly clears her throat does your sister finally obey, straightening to full height with a hand propped on her hip, the picture perfect image of nonchalance. In another life she would have made a fantastic actress in a holovid drama.
“That’s better.” Maar nods, satisfied. “Now why don’t we—”
The Mandalorian moves so quickly that you jerk in anticipation of attack, eyes widening to the size of moons as you watch the pistol fly out of Maar’s hand and straight into his outstretched one. Your lungs seize up, a single thought flashing through your mind. This is it, the moment we all die.
Except instead of shooting, he re-engages the safety mechanism and promptly holsters the gun at his side where it belonged. Without saying anything.
Ahsoka’s slack-jawed expression would have been comical if it hadn’t matched your own stunned face. Even Maar, who has witnessed over fifty years worth of shocking spectacles, looks awed by the unexpected display.
You recover first, somehow managing to piece together the right words to ask a coherent question. “Are you a Jedi?”
It is only because you are staring directly at him that you notice the virtually imperceptible tilting of his head. “I’m a Mandalorian,” he answers bluntly, oblivious to how your heart skips a beat. “Weapons are part of my religion. It’s important to earn their trust.” He addresses Maar then, adding, “Especially if they’re stolen from us.”
His baritone voice has changed from when he spoke on the ship. Without the exhaustion wrapped around his vocal chords you are able to hear his normal timbre. Due to the modulator in his helmet, it has a husky quality, an intriguing mix of smoke and honey. But that is not what has your montrals prickling and your spine straightening.
“I disarm all my patients,” Maar replies, back to being her cool, calm, and collected self. “I would have given it back—”
“How old are you?”
You don’t realize you have spoken until two pairs of eyes and an expressionless visor look at you.
The Mandalorian’s fingers curl and uncurl at his sides once, twice. “Nineteen,” he answers after a few seconds of lapsing silence.
“Oh Ai,” Maar murmurs, vocalizing your own thoughts.
All this time you have been thinking of the Mandalorian as a man beneath the amor. A hardened and seasoned fighter who has seen a lifetime of bloodshed and violence. But the reality is he is only two years older than you. Standing right on that thin, blurry line between being seen as a teenager and being considered an adult.
“Who are you?” the Mandalorian asks, glancing first at you then your sister and back to Maar. Frustration and wariness blend together, sharpening his voice. “Why am I here? What happened?”
Ahsoka meets your eye with a question in her gaze, one you don’t have the answer for: where do we even begin?
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