Intro - Aliit Prudii
By: 'Nosolee Haran Prudii
(Have to come up with something better later. I guess this works for now.)
I was not entirely sure on how to start this out, but I figured if I started writing this down, it would come to me as I went. For years now, I've been Alor of Aliit Prudii. To anyone who might eventually find this somewhere and isn't Mandalorian, Alor means leader and Aliit means Clan. Maybe I'll throw that down in the notes later. Maybe. Aliit Prudii, my Clan, isn't a large one. We total close to twenty members, and we are spread extremely thin throughout the galaxy. That might look strange from the outside but to us? It's precisely how we want it. We can leave the numbers for the larger clans and houses.
Why start like this? With a minor history lesson? I feel it's important to show some of the past to understand the future, which is precisely what I intend to do with this journal, memoir, whatever. My writings are here to share with future generations of my people and the rest of the galaxy. Help them understand what may transpire and what has happened to share the galaxy they inherit from us. My ancestors and many from my culture did a horrible job with keeping records. All we have from them are old armors, a few scribbled notes here and there, word of mouth stories, and a wasteland of a homeworld that isn't even really ours anymore. I'm hoping I can relieve future Mandalorians the stress and challenges I've faced when trying to keep track of the past. I have spent years collecting and piecing together different mediums that show our history. Also, it has been a painful and often dangerous process.
Now, let me backtrack a bit. Back to Aliit Prudii. I'd say it's not your typical Clan, but there's no such thing as a "typical" Mandalorian clan. We're all different in our ways, but we adhere to the same code that makes up what it means to be a Mandalorian. Aliit Prudii. As I have stated before, it has been around for thousands of years. We don't have a complete record of who founded it and when just the general timeline and a few names. One of my direct descendants on my father's side, Draiir Prudii, and his adopted father, Haran Prudii founded the Clan with a handful of others as a means of quietly keeping our culture alive. Why quietly? We are a culture that once tried marauding its way through the galaxy on suicidal crusades that nearly destroyed us. There were age-old grudges made and groups that wanted to see us wiped from the universe. Their intention on the founding of Aliit Prudii was to keep our culture alive by staying in the shadows. Prudii means "Shadow" in Mando'a, so that should tell you something there.
I heard or read somewhere a line that speaks of our stubbornness and our will to survive. "Even if there is one Mandalorian left alive in the universe, we will survive." I'm paraphrasing the quote, but you get what it means. Maybe. You can have one Mandalorian left, but they can adopt and teach others our ways. Bring our culture back into the vast galaxy. So Haran, Draiir, and the rest of the founding Clan settled on a remote planet that would serve as a home and a refuge. Kashyyyk. It was the perfect world for us. We could hunt. We could raise families. Moreover, we could keep the culture alive while still keeping in touch with the other clans.
Even intending to keep records and hold onto our history, my clan did an equally terrible job of it. There are gaps. Lots of holes. Hundreds of years without a single story or name. In hindsight, trying to put all that information in one place is not the best idea, which is something I'm learning as I go. War happens. Nature happens. Most recently, the Prudii homestead was half torched in the Clone Wars when the Confederacy and the Republic clashed during the invasion of Kashyyyk. I was a personal witness to this and did what I could to defend my home, and recover what relics and items we had. My point in mentioning this is that things happen we might not prepare for, which is why I am writing this down and making copies, and bringing these copies to different locations I have set up throughout the galaxy. Our tragedies could be repeats that happened hundreds of years ago, and that's why we have gaps. I'm getting ahead of myself with this and ranting. I apologize to whoever might be reading this if anyone ever does.
Aside from the discrepancies and losses, Prudii is still here. Doing exactly like we said we would. I think being a smaller clan makes us survive easier. It's far easier to keep track of how many of us there are, especially when we all know each other. I've met a few larger clans who had no idea who some of their members were.
Moreover, no, this isn't me telling clans to stay small, that would be a ridiculous notion. I want more than anything for us to grow in numbers again. To have a home still, what I'm meaning, is that Prudii's smaller amounts help for our goals.
Being the size we are, we have adapted to different ways of sharing what we know to the rest of the Clan. We raise our children as a community. The parents of any children are the ones who spend the most time with their children, but the rest of the Clan lends a hand. So we do it happily. My children are a particular case, but it shows how vital the Clan is to the nurturing and development of our future generations. As Alor, I'm out in the galaxy, keeping tabs on other members of our aliit and acting as a conduit for the other clans to stay connected with ours. This means that I am not always around my children, but I see them as often as possible, which is usually several days a week. When I can't be with them, my parents are there for them — also, any of Aliit Prudii that pass through Kashyyyk.
When we reach a certain age, at least in Aliit Prudii, we begin what is known as the Verd'goten. For Aliit Prudii, this is a set of trials that we pass for us to have the title of Mandalorian. These challenges are different for every Clan, and every Clan will tell you that. However, this isn't when training starts. We start training our children first in our language and our history, much like most cultures throughout the galaxy. When they reach a certain age, usually around seven years old, they'll be taught survival, how to hunt, how to defend themselves, and more of what exactly it means to be Mandalorian.
After years of training and teaching, Prudii's Mandalorians-to-be will go through the Verd'goten. Prudii has it as a set of four separate trials that need require completion before we will consider them fully Mandalorian. I suppose the best way to describe the tests is to share my own. The first trial is the most dangerous for us, but it is the same first trial every member of Aliit Prudii goes through. The hunting of a Katarn. And not the stumpy-legged Katarn of the Shadowlands, but the agile lizards of Wookiee legends. The Katarn are sacred to the Wookiees, and because of this, Aliit Prudii treats them with the utmost respect. We have chosen the Katarn skull as our Aliit symbol since we feel a kinship towards the creatures. They are fast, agile, and use the shadows to their advantage.
We don't pick which Katarn we slay; we let nature decide that. My Katarn was a beast locally known as "Jagged Maw." He was a brute of a Katarn patriarch. It was not a comfortable victory, as his fangs nearly ended me several times. However, in the end, I triumphed, passing my first trial. Jagged Maw's hide is hanging in the halls of our homestead, as is a tradition with every Katarn hide taken from trial goers, and one of his fangs made the base for my hunting knife. It may seem like a strange challenge as we hunted some creature, very original. That doesn't matter to us since it has meaning, just like it has meaning for the Wookiees.
Onto the second trial, and this one is different for every Mandalorian in Aliit Prudii, same with trial number three. My second trial saw me climbing the Great Wroshyr Tree centered in Kachirho, without standard climbing gear. I think the only reason I was allowed even to scale it, let alone shove a knife into it, was that my father and I helped free several dozen Wookiees from the Doshan slavers that prey on them. I somehow managed to make it even though I was exhausted by the end. Climbing a tree for a trial might sound accessible to some, but Wroshyr trees are far from small.
Third trial. Like I said before, this depends on the Mandalorian and the parent or the person training the Mandalorian in. This trial was a bit more personal for me. We had known that one of the first founders, Haran, vanished within the depths of Kashyyyk's large cave systems. It was a long shot, but I struggled with finding him based on some old footage and pieces of information left by himself and several clan members. I went in with a weeks worth of rations and supplies, on my own. If you don't know about Kashyyykian caves, they are as dangerous as the jungles and just as deadly, if not worse. I had neared two days in when I finally found his resting place in a mostly untouched area of the cave I traveled through. He had met an unfitting end when part of the cave collapsed on him. After spending some time resting near the collapsed wall, I took his helmet and returned home, passing my third trial.
Our fourth trial is another one every member of Aliit Prudii must go through. The forging of our first set of Mandalorian armor. Since beskar is hard to come by these days while the Empire still has a hold on Mandalore, we let the future Mandalorian choose their materials. They use every bit of knowledge they have to craft something suitable for them. Something ideal for their first set of personalized armor after spending; however, much time is needed, the current Alor will thoroughly examine the armor. If they deem it a success, Aliit Prudii will officially have a new Mandalorian. If not, then they start from scratch. Our Alor is generally our Aliit's master armorsmith. Alternatively, if you are Aliit Prudii in the current era, the Alor is the only armorsmith in the Clan, as we have other things to worry about and we have a small enough clan that one person can keep a check on everyone's armor.
I believe, for now, that should be a good bit of information for any future readers to digest. It feels good to write all this down after so many years finally. I've spent so long focusing on finding relics and writings from the past, that I neglected to write down what was currently happening. Considering how things are going, I'm expecting to be writing down a lot. The Mandalorians are far from dead, and we'll be here for hundreds of years to come. This is something I can be sure of.
Write in your Journal. These are IC for the writer, but OOC information for the reader. Share your personal adventures with others. Give them a peek inside the character they might not otherwise get to see.
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