way. Then the muscular girl flexed her arms. She attached a silvery grappling hook to the edge of the stone sill and reeled out a thin fibercord from her utility belt.
Tenel Ka lowered herself like a spider on a web, walking precariously down the long smooth surface of the inner wall.
The other Jedi trainees watched her, some applauding, others just recognizing the girl's skill. She could have used her Jedi powers to speed the descent, but Tenel Ka relied on her body whenever possible and used the Force only as a last resort. She thought it showed weakness to depend too heavily on her special powers.
Tenel Ka made an easy landing on the stone floor, her glistening, scaly boots clicking as she touched down. She flexed her arms again to loosen her muscles, then grasped the thin fibercord. With a snap from the Force she popped her grappling hook up and away from the stone above and neatly caught it in her hand as it fell.
She reeled the fibercord into her belt and turned around with a serious expression on her face, then snapped the thong free from her hair and shook her head to let the reddish tresses fall loose around her shoulders.
Tenel Ka dressed like other women from Dathomir, in a brief athletic outfit made from scarlet and emerald skins of native reptiles. The flexible, lightly armored tunic and shorts left her arms and legs bare. Despite her exposed skin, Tenel Ka never seemed bothered by scratches or insect bites, though she made numerous forays into the jungle.
Jacen waved at her, grinning. She acknowledged him with a nod, made her way over to where the twins were sitting, and slid onto the cool stone bench beside Jacen.
"Greetings," Tenel Ka said gruffly.
"Good morning," Jaina said. She smiled at the Amazonian young woman, who looked back