M'um m'aloo (hello)! Welcome to my cirkoza (encampment or home). Ikee Herat. My name is Herat. I am a Jawa and a daughter of Tatooine. My nickname is K'Tah-doo-Een-e.
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Sit back and let me tell you a story.
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April 18, 2017 Writing Contest
The Story of Tatooine
Kebee'oto, long, long ago, Tatooine was a lush and green world with great oceans and mighty jungles. My distant ancestors, the Kumumgah, were so powerful they could walk amongst the lopima, the stars themselves, as easily as if they were grains of sand. But then, one day, they met the Rakata. The Rakata were even more powerful than they, just like a krayt dragon is more powerful than a womp rat and the Sand People are more powerful than the Jawas. The hunya, the enemy Rakata. turned the Kumumgah into slaves. They made the Kumumgah work for them in distant places, perhaps even as far as Coruscant and Corellia. But the Kumumgah were proud, like the Sand People, and they turned against their masters. The Rakata destroyed Tatooine and turned the jungles and oceans into glass. The glass eroded under the Tatooine winds and turned to sand.
How long ago did this happen? I do not know. But some say Tatooine was a green world 4 million years ago and that the Kumumgah revolted against the Rakata over 25,000 years ago [25,200 BBY]. Some say the Kumumgah helped turn Tatooine into a desert and that the oceans had already turned into seas by the time of the Kumumgah. Some say that in the time of the Kumumgah, the dry river beds were rivers that flowed into what are now dune seas. The dry river bed that the alien settlers call Beggar's Canyon by Mos Espa was a river that flowed into what is now the Northern Dune Sea.
All I know is that the Kumumgah did not give up. They did not wander off into the desert to die. Instead, they lived in the caves where there were springs of water. They became a new people who were called the Ghorfa. Like the alien settlers who came later, the Ghorfa lived in one place. They did not move about. Other Kumumgah became smaller and smaller. They became the Jawas.
The Republic found Tatooine 5000 years ago. Many alien settlers came at that time. Miners built a big encampment, which they called Anchorhead, by a deep well 4200 years ago. But there was trouble. Only a small part of Tatooine up in the far north was habitable and there were now too many people living on Tatooine. The settlers and the miners were living too close to the caves of the Ghorfa people. They disrupted the water supply of the Ghorfa. So the Ghorfa had to leave their caves and learn how to live in the deserts. They became Sand People. The alien settlers first called them that 4000 years ago. The settlers took their name for the planet from the Jawas. My people call the planet, Tah-doo-Een-e
About that time, the Jedi Knights Sidrona Diath and Dace Diath came to Tatooine. Later [3956 BBY], Revan came to Tatooine to find the Rakatan star map in the Eastern Dune Sea.
But something else was about to happen that was more important. There was a big mining company called Czerka Corporation on Tatooine. They did not like our ore. So they left Tatooine. They left behind big, beautiful sandcrawlers. My ancestors took over the sandcrawlers and learned how to repair them. We were free! Some of our people roamed the deserts looking for water, food, and supplies while the rest stayed behind in mountain fortresses.
Just like the desert sands bury and then uncover treasures, the Republic found us again 1,100 years ago. They rebuilt Anchorhead and then abandoned it. The B'omarr Order, a strange group of aliens who wanted to turn themselves into walking heads, came 700 years ago. They began building what later became known as Jabba's Palace. Then Alkhara came. That was 550 years ago. He was an ally of the Sand People until he turned on them and destroyed them. Some say that the Sand People have been angry with the alien settlers since the time of Alkhara. I think the Sand People have been angry since they were thrown out of their caves.
Things really changed when the alien settlers came a third time. This was about 100 years ago. We first met the settlers when we stole one of their protocol droids. We did not know it but this time the alien settlers were here to stay.
The settlers built Bestine but there was not enough water there. So they built a second encampment in the Jundland Wastes in the northwestern edge of the settled area. They did not know it but the Sand People lived in the Jundland Wastes. We told them about the Sand People but they did not believe us. They called their second settlement, Tusken. One day, the Sand People joined together and attacked Fort Tusken. There has never been such a large group of Sand People attacking as there was on that day. Tusken was destroyed. Ever since then the alien settlers have called the Sand People the Tusken Raiders.
A second ship full of settlers came and the Tusken Raiders fled. The second group of settlers rebuilt Anchorhead. Anchorhead is at the southern edge of the habitable area. Anchorhead became even bigger than Bestine. The new settlers brought bigger and better sandcrawlers. They came from the Corellian Mining Corporation. We liked the look of the new sandcrawlers. Our old sandcrawlers were very old and we needed new ones. The settlers built Mos Eisley in the east. Many Rodians came. Then they founded Mos Espa in the north.
Then, a wonderful thing happened. The settlers discovered that they did not like our ore and they left. This was about 70 years ago. They left all their beautiful, new sandcrawlers. My people were very happy. Whole clans moved into the sandcrawlers. They could go even farther into the desert than ever before. We could fit 300 Jawas into a sandcrawler and roam the deserts looking for water and whatever we could salvage. Some of the settlers stayed and became moisture farmers. They had vaporators that could collect water out of the air and store it. My people found the old equipment of the moisture farmers, fixed it up a bit, and sold it back to them. But no matter how far our salvaging and trading expeditions took us, we always went back to the Dune Sea for the annual swap meet. The swap meet and gathering of the clans always takes place before the beginning of the sandstorm season. The time is marked in the heavens by the appearance of the distant, eccentric third moon, Chenini.
The Hutts came about 65 years ago. They made Mos Espa more prosperous so there were more opportunities for trade. They also brought slavery to Tatooine.
So that is the story of Tatooine. Now let me tell you my story.
The Story of Herat
This is me, standing in front of a sandcrawler.
Herat's birth and life on the sandcrawler, Mambay
I am the daughter of Iasa Nkik and Chenini. I was born on the sandcrawler, Mambay. Mambay is Jawaese for, "I hope so." Settlers got a hold of one of the Jawa sandcrawlers to mount an expedition to Tatooine's southern regions. A nuclear-fusion powered sandcrawler can hold 300 Jawas. My father's family and three other Jawa families, headed by Kiottja, Maliki, and Pachwenko, were taken along as mechanics.
The expedition's goal was to see if there were any signs of life, or at least any ruins, in Tatooine's southern polar region. They went to an area that, according to shorter expeditions led by spacecraft, should have some interesting ruins. There was hope there would be another Rakatan Temple there. They spent some time there but never found a Rakatan Temple. They found some interesting fossils and evidence of the rich jungle and ocean life that Tatooine used to have before 25,200 BBY. They also found ancient Kumumgah writings and later Ghorfa (logographic) writings.
Along the way they also tried to study the settlement patterns of the pre-Rakata Kumumgah. One theory is that the sand seas come from glass that was created when the Rakata bombarded Tatooine. The glass then eroded into sand. Some suggest that the Kumumgah lived in the areas that are now dune seas and that these settlements suffered the most intense bombardments. If this is true then that means that the oceans and seas of Tatooine had already disappeared by the time of the Rakatan bombardment. Others suggest that Kumumgah settlements were on the plains and plateaus near the seas and that the sand was blown into the depressions of the dune seas over time. The expedition results were inconclusive. (These competing theories are not canon).
I was the first of the Jawa children born on the sandcrawler. I grew up in the heavily settler-centered life onboard the Mambay. The humans thought I was cute when I was a child. I felt that they treated me better than my own people did. Jawa society favors the males over the females. The only important females are the shamans. Family, however, is important to all Jawas and we have 43 terms to describe relationships, lineages, and bloodlines. Genealogical information is carefully recorded.
Return to Jawa Society and the Formation of the Eyeta Clan
Akial, the son of one of my cousins, was taken by the settlers to be a Jedi in distant Coruscant because of his strong force sensitivity. (Akial was not invented by me but his family affiliation and the story of how he got to Coruscant is not canon). I am force-sensitive but the Jawa insisted I stay and become a future shaman. All of the Jawa, except for Akial, were returned to Jawa society. When we returned from our multi-year expedition, we found it hard to integrate back into Jawa society. We became our own clan and grew through attracting outcasts from Jawa society.
Our new group settled in a cave near the eastern end of the low-lying Northern Dune Sea. We called our sandcrawler the New Mambay. We formed our group from the remains of others so we called themselves the Eyeta or Friend Clan. We were allowed to join the annual Jawa swap meet in the Dune Sea but, in deference to our outcast position, we were the last to come to the swap meet. No Jawa wanted to marry into our clan. Jawa youngsters were threatened with being exiled to our clan. Occasionally a Jawa would voluntarily join our clan during the swap meet. Usually, the Eyete Clan grew through finding exiled individuals in the desert. Kiottja's force sense and my force sense helped in this.
We also had a human in our midst. Zeth Sandskimmer was orphaned during a Sandpeople raid on his moisture farm when he was a boy. He wore the Jawa robes but did not smell like a Jawa and he could not speak Jawaese properly, although he could understand it (except for the meaning carried by smell). He spoke the Jawa Trade Language.
We also had a female Tusken Raider with them. She lost her bantha in battle. According to the tradition of her people, she wandered in the desert to either die or find another bantha partner. Instead she was found by the New Mambay. She replaced her Tusken robes with those of the Jawa and took a new name. There was also a male Tusken who was replaced by a younger storyteller in his tribe. He too wandered in the desert, expecting death, but found the New Mambay instead.
While the Mambay (our first sandcrawler) was in the south polar region, we found ancient Kumumgah writings which told of their time in the stars and told of the lush world of Tatooine. We found the writings in a cave at the southern edge of the Great Southern Dune Sea. The Kumumgah were (according to a theory officially proposed in 1 ABY but which I say was proposed several times before then) the ancestors of the tall, gutteral-speaking Tusken Raiders and the short, high-pitched Jawas. The settlers made a copy of these writings and gave the copies to my people, the Jawa. Even though I am sure they were expecting us to cheat them, we managed to trick them into taking the copies with them and we kept the originals. The settlers discovered this when they tried to date the writings. They convinced us to come to Mos Eisley with the originals to have them dated. After they were dated, we were pleased to again swindle the settlers and come back with the originals. So we have the originals.
In time, I married Dathcha, the son of Kiottja, and became the shaman of the new group. Like Kiottja before me, I have tried to spread the word of the Kumumgah's time in the stars to my people at the swap meets. This has caused an increasing number of Jawa to yearn to travel the stars and to be less helpless as a people.
In time, the star yearning grew very intense and, after our clan fortress was destroyed by Tusken raiders, we fled to the stars. We became mechanics on a tourist vessel bound for Coruscant. A few of the more recently arrived members became mechanics in Mos Espa and Mos Eisley but the core of the survivors went to Coruscant.
Life on Coruscant - Jawa Motors and the Tah-doo-Een-e Market
On Coruscant, we live in the upper levels of the Under City. We have a shop, Jawa Motors, where we repair and sell used vehicles. In the beginning, we did the work and Zeth Sandskimmer, the human Jawa, interacted with the public. He was almost as Jawa as the Jawa but the public treated him differently. In time, we all learned to deal with the public. Since we have a stationary shop we have had to do higher quality work than we are used to. We have a sign that says, "Jawa Motors: In business in the same location for 10 years. We do quality work and will be here when you need us. Please pay in advance." I am very proud of the sign. I wrote it myself (with a little help from someone who spoke Basic).
We also have what we call a Jawa Market or Upezzo (and what the Coruscanti call a pawn shop) on the side. The shop is called Tah-doo-Een-e Market after the original Jawaese name of Tatooine (the name comes from the Jawas). So we sell random bits of shimmersilk, crimson greel wood, "liberated" power conduits, lost whisperbirds, and whatever else turns up. Some of the finer items have been pawned as we are too busy repairing things to scavenge much.
After years of paying exorbitant fees to import hubba gourds from Tatooine (it isn't a real meal without hubba gourds), we have finally been forced to raise their own hydroponically grown hubba gourds. Zeth Sandskimmer, the son of moisture farmers, became the chief farmer. We also grow vegetables like tatoes, bloddles, and h'kak beans, and fruit, like deb-debs, pikas, pallies, and bristlemelons. We raise gorgs in the sewers. We consume most of what we grow but we sell some to the elite Coruscanti, who like to try exotic foods. We also sell to the poor of the Under City, who have no choice but must eat the odd food. We give them good rates. We also give good rates to the restaurant owners they like, such as Nienna at the Galactic Cantina. The farming business is doing well and we are expanding into raising sandhawks. The produce is sold via the Tah-doo-Een-e Market.
Life on Coruscant - General Information
Herat's Basic is good for a Jawa. Since she was raised in a mostly human environment, other Jawas think she is quiet, slow-speaking, and has excellent elocution. Coruscanti think she jabbers and speaks too fast. They find her easily excitable and that her high-pitched voice can get tiring. On Coruscant, Herat uses a strong perfume to (partially) mask her scent, as most beings find Jawa odors repulsive. Nevertheless, Jawas can still learn about her identity, health, age, clan lineage, last meal, mood, etc. from her scent. Since she lives on Coruscant, she washes regularly and does not dip her clothes in the odiferous compounds that help Jawa clothes retain body moisture. She follows tradition and has polished orange gemstones in her hood that protect her eyes from bright sunshine. Of course, the Coruscanti sun is dim compared to the double brightness of Tatooine's suns. The dimness of the single sun is not a problem as Jawas have excellent night vision. Jawas have a high metabolism, an excellent immune system (which is very useful on Coruscant), and traditionally live on hubba gourds and water from funnel flowers that live along the cliffs. Traditionally, On Coruscant, Elanor has learned to think about how spare parts can be used rather than thinking about who might be interested in buying the parts, which would be the traditional Jawa motive. Herat wears a very small krayt dragon pearl under her robe. It comes from the gizzard of a krayt dragon.
Jawas are one meter tall and can expect to live about 80 years. They have yellow eyes and wear brown robes. Jawas can be found on desert worlds like Ryloth and Florrum, and garbage planets, such as Raxus Prime. Herat's clan is not the only Jawa clan on Coruscant. Akial, the Jedi Jawa, also visits them when he can.
Father - Iasa Nkik (deceased)
Mother - Chenini (made up name from Tatooine's third moon) (deceased)
Father's Brothers: Wimateeka, Hrar, Ttekket, etc.
Jawa Chief - Kiottja Fe'li (deceased)
Shaman - Aved (deceased)
Interclan Jawa Council:
1) Wimateeka the Ancient One (advisory) and Ttekket the Old, last surviving brothers of Iasa Nkik, represent the Nkik clan. Ttekket the Old is the Chief of the Interclan Jawa Council. His older brother, Wimateeka, is the former chief who now serves in an advisory capacity.
2) Uutkik, son of Kiottja Fe’li, represents the Fe’li clan
3) Kalit, son of Maliki represents the Kkak clan
4) Akkik represents the D’nec clan
5) Kekit B’ay - represents the B’ay clan
6) Tiathi represents the Rkok clan
7) Chief Shaman (female) is Khea B’ay. As shaman she oversees the overall operations
Iasa Nkik and Chenini’s children: Herat, sister Lelek, brothers Atetu and Kekit Nkik
Sister Lelek Nkik - married to Hadiir B’ay, son of Chief Shaman Khea B’ay. (Kekit B’ay is on the Jawa Council and heads up the family). Lelek and Hadiir B’ay have two sons: Kalit and Nbat.
Hrar Nkik, Herat’s uncle, has a son, Kalit Nkik, Herat’s cousin
(Nkik brothers on Jawa Council is Wimateeka the Ancient and Ttekket the Old)
Herat Nkik's husband: Dathcha Fe’li son of Kiottja Fe’li
Sons of Kiottja Fe’li: Uutkik (on Jawa Council), Dathcha, Enjikkhet, Akial (now a Jedi on Courscant)
Herat's children: Sons - Kiottja, Akial. Daughters - Chenini, Aved, Khea
Chenini and Deja are interested in each other.
Aved will marry Ch’hedt K’kak
Khea will marry Niktha D’nec
Akial will marry Tajeddig Qua’lu, from a new Jawa clan they meet on Coruscant (a Berber girl’s name) (other female names: Lunja, Siman, Tadla, Tumsilt, Tafsut, Tamenzut, Tantalwit, Tajeddigt)
Other family heads:
Maliki Kkak and his wife, Khea. (deceased). Their sons are Kalit, Meso, etc.
Pachwenko Kkak and his wife, Kiluyak (a made-up name meaning "cloud") (deceased). Their sons are Nebit, R'kik, etc.
Deja - An exiled Jawa who joined them as a young Jawa. He had heard about the group and dreamed of joining them but he did not join them until he was kicked out of his tribe.
- He is Chenini’s intended
Raito (Jar k'osa) the Tusken - K'Sheek, the female Tusken who lost her Bantha mount married A'Sardu, a male Tusken storyteller who was replaced as storyteller when he was still relatively young. They called themselves "daughter of Sheek" and "son of Sardu" to show they are now new beings in the Jawa tribe (their original names were Sheek and Sardu). They are now both deceased. Their son is Raito, who went with the group to Coruscant. He is dressed like a Jawa and looks like a giant Jawa. Raito also goes by the Jawa nickname Jar k’osa, which means, "Large". He is 1.8 or 1.9 meters tall and is nearly twice as tall as the average Jawa. Like Jawas, Tusken Raiders primarily live on hubba gourds.
Zeth Sandskimmer - He is the human boy who joined the Fe'li-Nkik-Kkak tribe. He found hubba gourds largely inedible but learned to eat them after they were heavily processed. He lived for the times they killed an eopie, gorg, or rodent for him or when they came across some deb-deb fruits or pallies. He is thrilled to be on Coruscant where "decent" food is more readily available.
Jawaese Language Lesson
Above - Tillba.
Always - Gomjam.
Bantha - Ugama.
Bargain - Bom'loo.
Below - Nufuzu.
Blast (verb) - Shootogawa.
Broken - Ko lopo.
Burn (verb) - Ha'mfoo.
Cave - Kiizci.
Chant (verb) - Hazamuzee.
City - Jubinloo.
Clan - Ayafa.
Clean - Meeglay.
Cliff - Dikwass.
Cloud - Kiluyak.
Cold - Oko.
Cook (verb) - Bazzok.
Credit - Toineepa.
Days - Baba.
Desert - Waff'mla.
Dune - Rillo.
Empire - Umpee.
Encampment - Cirkoza.
Enemy - Hunya.
Equal - Ysas.
Far - Bok.
Fix - Tando.
Food - Sooga.
Friend - Eyeta.
Give - Opawi.
Go - Ashuna.
Good-bye/Good day - Ubanya.
Greetings/Hello - M'um m'aloo.
High - Ogo.
Hole - M'nuta.
Hot - Wass.
How - Buja.
I - Ikee.
Junk - Dooka.
Knife - Ratapa.
Large - Jar k'osa.
Later - Yaytah.
Long ago - Kebee'oto.
Market - Upezzo.
Mountain - Bopom Kova.
No - Nyeta.
Okay - Mambay.
Pray - Perupa.
Repair (verb) - Kurruzza.
Rust - Rubac.
Sail Barge - Lo'wassa.
Sand - Ton ton.
Scanner - Dook'wab.
Sea - Lika.
Shoot (verb) - Shootogawa.
Sleep - Shanay.
Spare parts - Opakwa
Speeder - Speeda.
Stars - Lopima.
Steal - M'tuske.
Stop - Sabioto.
Thank you - Taa baa.
Them - Chikua.
Tomorrow - Takiik.
Up - Okka.
Vaporator - Vapposza.
Walk - Umka.
Warm - Pibboz.
Water - N'lappu.
Weapon - Keeza.
Where - Ookwass.
Wow - Utinni.
Yes - Ibana.
Yesterday - Neng ooka
7 Does not exist in Jawa arithmetic ???
100,000,000 Jo jo muma
"Sand stays. All else changes."
Illustrated Star Wars Universe, Kevin J. Anderson, New York: Bantam Books, 1995, 1997.
Secrets of Tatooine: Star Wars Roleplaying Game, JD Wiker, Renton, WA: Wizards if the Coast, Inc, 2001.
Star Wars Complete Locations: Inside the Worlds of the Entire Star Wars Saga, Kristin Lund, Simon Beecroft, Kerrie Dougerty and James Luceno, New York: Dorling Kindersley, 2005.
Star Wars: The New Essential Guide to Alien Species