As I once had cause to remind the original creator of this lightsaber as she lay dying, *I* am not a Jedi!
—In response to an astonished opponent commenting on her un-Jedi like behavior
Coté Lanlin, also known as Illi Madierre, was a mentally powerful Force-user from Naboo, who though throughout her life lacked full control over her powers, and having the unusual weakness of being completely incapable of telekinesis, was capable of mind control beyond that of even most Sith. As Illi Madierre she was an attendant to Breha Organa or Alderaan. She was also seventh handmaiden to Queen Amidala.
Coté was a result of her mother Rola Lanlin's ambitions to bear and raise a child more powerful than most Jedi. To this end, she conceived her daughter by then-Master Dooku to insure she would be highly Force-sensitive, and indeed Coté was recorded as having an unusually high midichlorian count. Though it likely would have upset her considerably to learn that Dooku was her father, Coté lived her life knowing only he was a Jedi, and therefore indifferent to which one in particular. Though she and her husband Detter Lanlin were approached by the Jedi at Coté's birth, they angrily shouted at them not to come back.
Early Life(48 BBY to 33 BBY)Edit
From infancy, Coté's treatment by her parents was aimed at increasing her power, and much of it was abusive. Seeing her intelligence develop faster than was normal for a baby, they tried to get it to develop faster, physically disciplining their daughter when she did not respond quickly enough to their liking. They also constantly cut her off from the Force to increase her sense of it, doing her deep mental damage.
When Coté resisted, her parents increased the abuse, threatening to give her to the Jedi, having convinced her she would be treated even worse by them. Nonetheless, when she was thirteen and of age, Coté fled her parents home and traveled to Theed, where she joined the militia. Overly aggressive and lacking social skills, she made few friends, but when she applied to be a possible handmaiden to then-Princess Amidala, her aggressiveness proved an asset and she was chosen.
Handmaiden(32 BBY to 24 BBY)Edit
During training Coté slowly grew to trust her fellow handmaidens, the first time she had trusted anyone in her life. She also took notice of Ardré Kartik, who like herself had rumors of a mysterious past and supernatural powers. When during the invasion of Naboo her fighting abilities were compared to those of the Jedi, Coté got Ardré to admit to her past in the Jedi Temple. She herself confessed to Saché Aeyinson as having mental powers but being unable to control or rely on them. She nonetheless was able to use them to help the handmaidens give track of each other somewhat. When Ardré was then temporarily believed to be dead, Coté's grief surprised her, and a serious friendship started to develop between the girls.
After the battle Coté and Ardré took a Concordance of Fealty with each other, and Ardré helped Coté gain some control of her abilities. The two handmaidens also managed to form a Force thought link between themselves.
Hermit(24 BBY to 20 BBY)Edit
When Amidala left office, Coté and Ardré removed to the swamp together to develop their abilities further. However, after a year, Coté, who had discovered some precognitive ability, gained foreknowledge of Ardré rejoining the Jedi Order in another year, and left immediately, believing doing so would make things easier. She did not tell Ardré why, because she believed Ardré had to make the choice to rejoin of her own free will.
For the next three years Coté took no permanent home. She traveled through much of the Mid Rim, working odd jobs and practicing her abilities whenever she could, though she developed them no further. She took a training course in stellar cartography in 21 BBY and was able to support herself better with it. She kept sporadic mental contact with Ardré, explaining why she had left as soon as it was safe too, and also saving Ardré's life in one particular situation.
Struggle With the Dark Side(20 BBY to 19 BBY)Edit
Reunion With ArdréEdit
In 20 BBY after three years physical separation Coté met with Ardré again, along with her new Master Oné Madierre, who ironically enough was the daughter of Rola Lanlin's maidservant Sell. Coté had always suffered from deep anger and resentment, and seeing herself effectively replaced in Ardré's life by Oné, and how by being slipped out of the Lanlin's household and to the Jedi Oné had lived the life Coté had been deprived of, Coté's turned very jealous. In an attempt to spite them she tracked down Sell and introduced mother and daughter, but this backfired as Sell and Oné were happy to see each other, even if only once.
Confontration on Veck IIIEdit
As her growing hatred for Oné started to consume her, Coté grew more powerful, and used her mind to take control of the clone Commander Lim and his battalion, who had often served under Oné and Ardré, and made them go rogue on the planet of Veck III. As she had hoped, Oné and Ardré were the ones sent to investigate, and she commanded the clones to making killing Oné their first priority. Guessing what was going on, however, Ardré searched for and found Coté.
When her initial attempts to reason with Coté failed, Ardré handed her lightsaber to her and challenged Coté to kill her, saying that if Coté had truly gone over to the Dark Side, she would do so. Through their thought link, Coté was able to determine that if she had indeed turned, Ardré would rather die anyway. Unable to kill her, Coté released the clones from her mind control and surrendered.
Recovery in the TempleEdit
In return for being spared legal charges, Oné insisted that Coté submit herself to the care of the mental healers in the Temple, and she and Ardré never contact each other again. Coté submitted to both decisions.
In the Temple, she received mental conditioning alongside normal counseling and let go of much of her lifelong anger, though she failed to exorcise it entirely. She was kept alongside catatonic patient Depa Billaba, and developed a guarded friendship with Billaba's former Master Mace Windu, who paid daily visits to his padawan whenever he was in the Temple.
About a month before the end of the war, the healers proclaimed her recovered. She attempted to make mental contact with Depa Billaba at this time, but failed. Noting her background in stellar cartography, the Reassignment Council contacted her and offered her an on-Coruscant position in the Exploratory Corps, which she accepted.
On the Run(19 BBY to 11 BBY)Edit
Death of ArdréEdit
Determined to live out the rest of her life cheerfully, if not entirely joyfully, Coté worked hard at her new job, befriended a couple of her co-workers including Lils Gredi, and even took a lover. But on the day the war ended, she woke up and suddenly gained the foreknowledge of Ardré's death in a matter of hours.
Remembering Oné's interdiction, Coté decided to go to the Temple and find someone who would pass on her warning to Ardré. When her cab was caught in traffic, however, she found herself alongside a transport in which she recognized Master Windu, and left the cab to join him and give the warning to him. But she learned from one of the other three Masters that Oné and Ardré were en route back to Coruscant on a ship with its communication equipment offline, and could not be reached until it might be too late.
Coté then gained foreknowledge of the death of all four Masters, three of them together and Windu's a little after, and told them this. She listened to them discuss the likelihood of their achieving their mission, though they did not say what it was, and decide to go forward with it, Master Windu saying he might still be able to do what might have to then be done, even if they couldn't do what they wanted to do. They let Coté off first, Master Windu warning her that if they failed, and it would be on the newsnets if they did, her life would be in danger.
Deciding Ardré life was more important that any agreement, Coté contacted her through the thought link. She also relayed her conversation with the Masters, leaving Ardré and Oné to conclude there might be a Sith in the government. By the time they reached Coruscant Coté was sensing the deaths of Jedi all across the galaxy due to Order 66, and the Temple was burning, which they decided justified landing near instead of at it. Coté met them there just as Commander Lim received Order 66 and shot both the Jedi.
Oné died immediately. As Ardré lay dying, Coté used her powers to make Lim kill himself, then the other clones. Ardré mentally begged her to stop, insisting that even though Coté wasn't a Jedi, she shouldn't take revenge for Ardré's sake. Coté stopped and sent the clones away, wishing she'd known what they were going to so before it had been too late to stop them. Ardré bequeathed her lightsaber to Coté in accordance with the Concordance of Fealty before dying in her friend's arms. As she did, Coté felt her powers die as well, leaving her unable to even sense the Force.
Hearing Palpatine's claims of Jedi rebellion while preparing Ardré and Oné's bodies to be taken back to Naboo, Coté dragged them to Senator Amidala and gave an impassioned speech to her which her active handmaidens Motée Sensari and Ellé Okrest walked into. Amidala told all three of them that she was going away alone, and if they hadn't heard from her in two weeks to consider her dead and they themselves released from their oaths. She also concurred that Coté might be in danger, and told them that Palpatine was behind the war, but did not say where she had gained he knowledge. Motée assured Coté that she and Ellé would protect Coté with their own lives.
After Amidala's body was brought to Naboo by Senator Bail Organa, the handmaidens followed her funeral with a private one for Ardré and Oné by the Handmaidens' Graveyard. There Motée expressed her belief that Amidala had been murdered by the Emperor, as Ardré and Oné had been, and Sabé made a speech and swore an oath against him. Coté was the first to repeat the oath. However, she chose shortly afterwards to flee Naboo and go underground.
Meeting With Other RefugeesEdit
Traveling under several false identities, Coté two years going with limited purpose from planet to planet, giving Imperial forces trouble whenever she could manage to. Late in 17 BBY, however, she joined a loose group of Force-sensitive refugees led by former Agricultural Corps official Sara Tor'nuit. She would met and journey with many of them over the next six years, including her old friend Lils Gredi. She also met with former Jedi padawan Octus Kon, who on hearing how she had lost her powers, suggested she might have repressed them due to the emotional trauma of losing Ardré and tried to help her gain them back, but without success. He had more success, however, in training her to use Ardré's lightsaber, which she would keep for the rest of her life.
In 11 BBY Imperial agents lured most of the group into an ambush, in which Octus sacrificed himself so the others could escape. During the flight they were separated, and Coté was badly injured. She hid, then passed out from blood loss. By a stroke of fortune, she was discovered by a rebel sympathizer native to Alderaan, who tended to her wounds, hid her, and delivered her to Senator Organa.
Illi Madierre(11 BBY to 0 BBY)Edit
She was never able to find out whether her friends had survived or not, but Bail fashioned a new identity for her, that of Illi Madierre, attendant to his wife Breha. Finding herself effectively a handmaiden once again, Coté served the Queen while aiding Organa and his allies in the Rebel Alliance. She also met and befriended young Princess Leia Organa.
In the presence of Leia and the peace of her new life, Coté began to gain a few of her powers back. As soon as she could sense the Force again, she found Leia to be very strong in it. She had taken a liking to Leia because she reminded her very strongly of Amidala, and she eventually confided to Leia that she had special powers, and Leia asked if Coté could possibly help her remember her original parents. Working together, the two of them were able to draw out the first moments of Leia's existence, in which Coté recognized Leia's mother as none other than her old mistress.
She confronted Bail with this knowledge, who admitted to it, but also pointed out to Coté that Leia's safety depended on the secret being kept. Coté agreed to tell noone. She also agreed not to tell Leia about her own abilities. She was aware, however, in 0 BBY, that Leia was being sent, among other missions, to Obi-Wan Kenobi to learn about her own past and family, though as fate had it, Coté never learned that Leia was not an only child.
Leia never reached Kenobi; her ship was attacked and she was reported as dead. Less than a week later, Coté awoke with the foreknowledge of her own death by that evening. Choosing not to fight it, she spent most of the day in meditation. As the Death Star entered the Alderaan system, she gained the sudden knowledge that everyone's death was now minutes away, but also that Leia was alive. Frantically she ran to find Bail and Breha. She found Breha first, told her, and they both ran to where Bail was frantically on the comm with the technicians responsible for the planetary shield, to tell him. It took a minute to convince him, but then he thanked them. Having told the technicians all he could, he cut the signal off and pulled both of them close.
Coté left them their hope of survival in those last minutes, which she spent with the astonishing realization that for the first time in twenty years, she was actually happy to have lived as long as she had.