Title: Amnesty Author: ardavenport Timeframe: pre-Episode I, pre-TPM Genre: drama, adventure Characters: Obi-Wan Kenobi, Qui-Gon Jinn, OCs Keywords: Obi-Wan Kenobi, Qui-Gon Jinn, amnesty Summary: Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan are assigned to a place of amnesty and some interesting persons walk in. Disclaimer: All characters and the Star Wars universe belong to George and Lucasfilm; I am just playing in their sandbox. "Master." Qui-Gon Jinn's eyes snapped open, his light sleep vanishing. It was dark, no lights, only faint white, pink and orange reflections on the walls and vaulted ceiling. The hand on his cheek withdrew. He rolled over on the padded bench and rise up on one elbow. The dark outline of his nineteen year-old Padawan was close, behind him the delicately carved whorls and figures of an outer wall beyond the entry archway of the observatory, pale reddish-pink in the nebula light from the night sky outside. "Someone's coming." Qui-Gon rolled all the way off, his boots hitting the floor. In a few steps he passed Obi-Wan out to the veranda. It was too early to be the end of Obi-Wan's watch. There was no lightening of the sky from the planet's star, just the bright swirls and stars of the K'koosh Nebula that filled more than half the night sky. Ducking into the shadow of the pillars and statues, he still had a full view of the canyon below. At the base of the stairs leading up to the observatory a lone figure climbed up toward them with a faint scrape and clink of armor and weapons. Qui-Gon's hand went to his lightsaber and he backed up a pace. "Did the sentries warn you?" It was too early for anyone to come. But not too early for an ambush. "Yes, Master." Obi-Wan whispered back. "None of them were disabled or attacked. They read no energy sources." "Is there just the one?" "Yes, Master. He seems to be alone; no ship, no droids. And no other large lifeforms." If it was an ambush, it was a very bad one. Or one so destructive that it had no need of stealth. "What shall we do?" Obi-Wan whispered. Qui-Gon glanced back at his young apprentice, face pale in the pinkish stellar light. "He obviously wishes to meet us. So, we will meet him." Qui-Gon moved to the entry arch, standing in plain view, his dark robe pushed back from his sides, the lightsaber clipped to his belt exposed; his Padawan positioned himself at his side and a step behind. Less than halfway up, their visitor paused. He looked humanoid, medium height, male body-type. He wore black armor over his upper and lower torso with dark vertical ridges accented silver. There were black boots, gauntlets and arm guards, shiny enough to mirror the stellar brilliance above. His thighs and upper arms were dark and dull. An eye visor cut a shiny black horizontal gash across the silvered vertical helmet ridges that formed a crown of sensor tips over the head. There was a heavy blaster rifle sticking up from behind his shoulders and a blaster holster below each hip. He lowered his head and resumed climbing. The air was warm and still, smelling of stone, dust and the huge tufts of flowering dry grass growing among the rocks. Over the low hum of the observatory's shield generator, a reptile bird cawed; another answered from far way. Large, hairy insects scurried away from their warm, comfortable spots on the stone steps as the man in armor approached. Qui-Gon remained completely still, the Force, an aura of life coming into clearer focus around him. Step, step, step. Coming closer, higher. A tiny lizard snapped up a glittering, drifting bubble insect. Step, clink-creak, step, clink-creak. He reached a landing, crossed it without breaking stride and climbed up the next section of stairs. Obi-Wan inhaled deeply, his anticipation finally stilling. Step, clink-creak, step, clink-creak. The person stopped at the final landing less than two body-lengths below them. The helmet tilted up again. Qui-Gon sensed . . . . nothing. Only an armored man standing on bare stone. No hostility but some satisfaction.