Before Hauntings from the Past: OC, Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan (40 BBY AU) Chapter 14 Posted 3/16

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Book-Geek, Oct 28, 2011.

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  1. AzureAngel2 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 14, 2005
    star 6
    “It will all be alright,” Jace whispered in her ear. “I promise you, everything will be alright.”


    Now that the boards are back, I believe everything. Even in Jace's words. ^:)^
  2. Book-Geek Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 28, 2011
    star 3
    @Hazel: Yeah, Marcus Jade. *Has a mischevious smirk* You'll be seeing more of him later.

    @FuzzyWuzzy: Thank you! And I've added you to the PM list.

    @AzureAngel2: I know what you mean. Everything is brighter now that we've moved.

    I'm just going to keep tagging the people on my PM list. If you want off, just send a message to my inbox. @mavjade, @obimom, @Luna_Nightshade, @Shira_Adola, @Jade_eyes, @EGKenobi


    Chaper Sixteen: When It All Falls Apart…

    After a long, exhausting week, Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan and Jane walked through the halls of the Temple. They were alone because it was late at night; they had just returned from a mission, still trying to comprehend what had happened at the trade convention.

    “I’m just glad Denn and Jace couldn’t make it this year,” Qui-Gon said. “I wouldn’t have wanted either of them involved.”

    “And, as we all know, that would have been inevitable, because where Jane goes, Jace follows,” Obi-Wan said, ruffled Jane’s hair.

    “Shut up,” Jane muttered, grabbing Obi-Wan’s wrist and flinging his arm away. She was tired and not feeling well, the mix making her extremely grumpy.

    Seeing Obi-Wan’s hurt and confused face, Jane sighed.

    “I’m sorry, Obi-Wan,” She said. “I just don’t feel good.”

    Qui-Gon reached over and put a hand on her forehead.

    “You do feel warm,” He said, frowning. He stopped her from walking further and scooped her up in his arms, holding her against his chest.

    “I can walk,” Jane moaned.

    “I know you can, but you’re not going to,” Qui-Gon told her to her frustration. Having recently celebrated her ninth birthday, Jane had decided that she needed to act less child-like and the primary way to do that—in her opinion—was to not be carried around by Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon, though she grudgingly admitted that she still liked it when she was carried around piggy-back style.

    Qui-Gon was surprised when she didn’t argue further and, by the time that they had gotten back to their quarters, Jane was fast asleep. Though he regretted doing it, he woke her up so that she could change into her pajamas. Within five minutes, she was changed—a trail of clothes following her; Qui-Gon figured that could wait till the morning—and he was tucking her in, though she was asleep as soon as her head hit the pillow. Qui-Gon placed the comforter on her, then put Jane’s yellow blanket on top of the comforter; Jane shifted and grabbed her blanket and pulled it closer to her. Qui-Gon smiled; the blanket had always been Jane’s rock. It came on missions, trips to the Healer’s ward, and was usually brought out whenever she was upset. Recently, Jane had started leaving it at home more, and, when asked, the girl simply responded that she was getting too big to be always dragging around a blanket.

    Qui-Gon kissed Jane’s warm temple and whispered ‘good-night’ then left the room to prepare to seek sleep for himself.

    The following morning, Qui-Gon stood against the counter, a mug of tea in his hand. It was almost noon, and Jane still hadn’t wakened. Thinking it was just that her body was fighting off whatever illness she had, Qui-Gon didn’t think waking her at this time was a good idea. He left her door open so he could hear her if she woke up, planning on waking her up later to at least get her to drink something.

    But as he was getting up from the couch to wake Jane up, she came tottering out of her room, one had clutching the doorframe for support, her other arm wrapped around her stomach.

    “Good to see you awake,” Obi-Wan said, grinning at her.

    But Qui-Gon knew something was wrong. She was shaking, her eyes were glazed, her face was pale and covered with sweat.

    “Jane?” Qui-Gon said. She shook her head…

    And fell in a heap onto the floor. And she wasn’t breathing.

    ******************************************************************************

    Qui-Gon paced. There was nothing he could do but pace. Pace, and wait.

    He and Obi-Wan had rushed Jane to the Healer’s. The on-call Healer took one look at Jane and snatched her out of Qui-Gon’s arms. They had taken her to triage and instantly gotten to work. Within seconds, she had a machine breathing for her, a drip full of fluids attached to her, a computer monitoring her every heartbeat. Winna and Bant had stepped into the room not a minute later, having been paged through the Force to come to the Healer’s Ward.

    The two healers had taken over Jane’s care; Winna examined her while Bant asked what had happened, if she had been wounded on their mission whatsoever, anything that could give them a clue as to how to treat the girl.

    Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan had answered every question asked, but the information gave them no new leads. After what felt like an eternity later, the two were allowed to see Jane. She looked small, frail and helpless to Qui-Gon’s eyes. His heart panged; the last time he had seen someone he cared for looking like this, she hadn’t survived.

    Seeing Qui-Gon’s face and knowing where his mind was going, Obi-Wan put a hand on his shoulder.

    “Master, I think you need some fresh air,” Obi-Wan said.

    Qui-Gon nodded.

    “I think I’ll run over to our quarters,” He said. “Pack some of her things. For when she wakes up.”

    “That sounds marvelous,” Obi-Wan said with a comforting smile. “I’ll stay here and keep an eye on her.”

    Qui-Gon kissed Jane’s forehead, squeezed her hand and then left the room, hoping to talk to Winna before he left.

    He told her where he was going, and that he wasn’t planning on being gone long. Winna nodded, and then told him what her plan was.

    “We’re going to run some blood tests,” Winna said. “We think she may have an infection. Hopefully the tests will help us narrow down the options. Also, I’m trying to locate her Corellian medical record and birth certificate. Those are the only things we have not been able to obtain, and they may have answers we need.”

    Qui-Gon nodded, bid Winna farewell and headed out towards the apartment.

    He was finishing packing some of Jane’s clothes when he heard the comlink sound. He rushed towards the comlink, thinking it could be the Healer’s, but was surprised to see Jace Solo’s face appear.

    “Hi, Master Qui-Gon,” The eleven year old said cheerfully. “Can I talk to Jane?” His smile fell when he registered the look on the Jedi’s face. “Is everything alright?”

    “No, Jace, it isn’t,” Qui-Gon said. “Jane is very sick. She’s unconscious in the Healer’s Ward and is having trouble breathing on her own.”

    Jace’s eyes widened.

    “What, how?” The boy asked. He was silent for a long time as Qui-Gon explained. Finally, he whispered, “Can me and my dad come to Coruscant? I just want, I just kind of want to see her.” His voice ended in a whisper.

    Qui-Gon heard the unspoken words: In case this is the last time I can.

    “You’ll have to ask your father,” Qui-Gon said.

    “I’ve already got the navacomputer changing coordinates,” Denn said, coming to stand behind his son. “We should be there by morning.”

    “Thank you,” Qui-Gon said. “I will alert the Temple’s guards so that you don’t run into any problems when you arrive.”

    They said their good-byes and hung up.

    *************

    Qui-Gon had hoped that Jane’s condition would improve over the next few hours, but if anything, he felt she was getting worse. Her heart seemed to be slowing down, her temperature dropping from boiling to near freezing.

    Winna encouraged Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan to talk to her, as she could hear what was going on subconsciously. So they did: Qui-Gon told her Jace was coming to see her, Obi-Wan seemed to be trying to bribe her awake, and they talked about everything until the very last thing they could discuss was the weather.

    Jace and Denn arrived in record time; Denn embraced Qui-Gon in a brotherly manner and asked if there was anything he could do.

    “You’re here,” Qui-Gon responded softly. “That is enough.”

    Jace asked softly if he could see Jane; he sat down beside her and took her hand.

    Winna’s search was not going well; they had determined that Jane did have an infection, and that it was related to her parentage.

    “At first we thought it was Corellian Fever,” Winna said one late afternoon. “But those tests were negative. We’ve sent the samples to Coruscant General, but they can’t tell us what it is until they know where her father is from. They have a few geneticists trying to find out.”

    “I take it the search for her birth certificate isn’t going well?” Obi-Wan said.

    “Not well at all,” Bant said. “If I knew what region of Corellia she was born in, that would help. Has she ever told you where she was born?”

    “Not at all,” Qui-Gon said as Obi-Wan shook his head. Qui-Gon turned to Jace, who sat starring at his hands in his lap. The boy had barely spoken since he arrived, which was strongly uncharacteristic; even when he was upset by something, he would get his two-cents into a conversation. “Has Jane ever told you what part of Corellia she was born in?” Qui-Gon asked him.

    “No, sir.” Jace said softly, not looking up.

    Bant sighed.

    “Wish me luck. I have one last idea that might work. Just got to hope that the Corellian senator remembers me.” She said, then went back into her office.

    “She knows the Senator?” Denn asked, his brow furrowed.

    “Jedi have a lot of… interesting… connections,” Obi-Wan said with a shrug.

    “Ah,” Denn said.

    Impatience and quick-tempers were running high the rest of that afternoon with the two Healers. Winna was upset because the geneticists weren’t working fast enough and Bant had apparently run into another wall trying to find Jane’s birth certificate.

    “According to their records, there is no Jane Marie Mago born on Corellia in the last decade. And don’t get me started on the smart-aleck aides.” Bant said bitterly. This was the first time Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan had ever seen her this upset over anything.

    “That’s impossible,” Denn said, outraged. “No matter where she’s born, she should have a birth certificate. She would have to in order for her mother to name Qui-Gon Jane’s guardian.”

    Qui-Gon, too, was upset. Bant was at a dead end and Jane was getting sicker and sicker as the moments ticked on.

    Obi-Wan, sensing Qui-Gon’s frustration, led him out of the waiting room and into the hallway.

    “Jace knows something,” Obi-Wan said softly.

    “What do you mean, Jace knows something?” Qui-Gon asked.

    “I sensed guilt from him, and confusion. Like he wants to say something, but doesn’t want to betray someone’s trust.”

    “Whose trust could he betray?” Qui-Gon asked.

    “Jane’s,” Obi-Wan said. “He’s torn between telling and possibly losing her trust, and not telling and more than likely losing her life. I think he needs help in making the decision, or at least someone to talk to. Someone he trusts, that he knows he can tell only so that Jane’s life will be saved, and that nothing will be thought more of or less of him, Jane and whatever secret they have.”

    Qui-Gon pinched the bridge of his nose and sighed, knowing the younger man was correct.

    “How did you get to be so wise?” He asked.

    “I learned from the best,” Obi-Wan said, grinning.

    “Thank you, Padawan,” Qui-Gon said, smiling.

    Obi-Wan’s brow furrowed in confusion, but his eyes twinkled.

    “Master, I was talking about Jane.” Obi-Wan said. He winked then walked back into the waiting room.

    With a chuckle, Qui-Gon followed. He saw Jace, sitting the farthest away from everyone else, his head in his hands.

    Qui-Gon went and sat down beside the boy.

    “You are facing a hard decision,” Qui-Gon said. “To lose trust to save a life, or to remain faithful and watch someone you love die.”

    “I can’t lose her,” Jace mumbled. “I’ll either lose her trust, or lose her to death. I will not attend her funeral. So I have to lose a friend.”

    Jace took a deep breath and raised his head to look at Qui-Gon in the eyes.

    “I know why Bant can’t find Jane’s birth certificate,” He said in a breath.

    “Was she not born on Corellia?” Qui-Gon asked. “Was she born on her father’s homeworld?”

    Jace shook his head.

    “Her birth certificate is on Corellia,” Jace said.

    “Then is she registered under her father’s surname?” Qui-Gon asked.

    “No, sir,” Jace said, shaking his head.

    Qui-Gon was now very confused.

    “Then, what is it?” He asked.

    Jace swallowed as tears welled up in his eyes.

    “It’s her name,” He choked out. “Her first name. It’s Jaina, not Jane.”

    “Jaina?” Qui-Gon repeated. Jace nodded then put his head in his hands again. “Did she tell you this?”

    “Not directly… I figured it out, and she told me I was right,” Jace said.

    “Why did she change her name?” Qui-Gon asked.

    “It’s not my place to tell you,” Jace said solemnly. “It’s her story. She should be the one to tell it.”

    Qui-Gon could not disagree. In fact, he knew for a fact that he and Jane—Jaina—would be having a very long talk after she was better.

    Bant, too, was shocked. But as soon as she placed in the new name, it was found instantly.

    “Jaina Marie Mago,” Bant said, looking at the piece of paper in her hand. She read off Jane’s—Jaina’s, Qui-Gon reminded himself—birthday and blood type. “Mother, Jocelyn Ella Mago. Father-” Bant cut herself off and scowled. “Father, unknown.”

    While Jaina’s birth certificate did not shed any light on Jane’s father, it did give them an easier time finding Jaina’s Corellian medical record.

    “Jocelyn had Jaina vaccinated for all the Corellian diseases,” Bant said. “This makes sense as the geneticists have determined she has nothing Corellian. They are going through a databank as we speak.”

    Just then Winna came storming out of the Healer’s station. Qui-Gon watched as the older woman walked past, trying to read her expression. It was hard, almost unreadable. But Qui-Gon saw something, almost a cross between grief and fear, in her eyes. She went inside her office and closed the door; her door was never closed.

    Excusing himself, Qui-Gon walked up and knocked lightly on the door.

    “Enter, Qui-Gon,” Winna called back in a tired voice. Qui-Gon opened the door. The room was dark, except for one lamp that was on Winna’s desk. The gray haired woman sat with her head in her hands, staring down at a piece of paper.

    “Is… is everything alright?” Qui-Gon asked.

    “Yes and no,” Winna said with a sigh. “Yes in that we know what Jaina has. What she has is a vaccine-preventable disease. This disease is native to only one planet in the entire galaxy and the vaccine is only in two places: that planet and here at Coruscant General. But Jocelyn didn’t know that. It’s treatable, and Coruscant General is sending over the treatment that we’ll put in her drip bag. If all goes well, she’ll be awake by midday tomorrow. Doctors say she’s lucky. If she was any younger or wasn’t Force-sensitive, there’s a chance her body wouldn’t be able to fight.”

    “That’s excellent,” Qui-Gon said, relieved. “Now, what exactly has this piece of paper done to offend you?”

    He had meant it jokingly, to at least get Winna to smile. But she didn’t.

    “Because I know why Jaina has never told us who her father is,” Winna said gravelly. “The disease is Telosion.”

    “That narrows it down to, what, a dozen Jedi?” Qui-Gon asked.

    “Actually, they narrowed it down to one,” Winna said. “After they discovered the Telosian gene, I sent over DNA samples from all twelve of those Jedi with the same descent. Out of those twelve, five were off-planet at the estimated time of Jaina’s conception, this being based off the information on Jaina’s birth certificate and the time of Jocelyn’s departure. Four have strong alibis. Two were here in the med-ward. And one died the same week Jocelyn left. They got a match.”

    “So, who is it?” Qui-Gon asked.

    Winna looked up at him sadly.

    “The one who died.” She whispered.

    “I didn’t know we lost a Jedi that week,” Qui-Gon said.

    “We had lost him years before that day,” Winna said, looking away. “That day, he just lost his life.”

    Qui-Gon’s face paled.

    “You don’t mean…” He whispered.

    Winna nodded sadly.

    Qui-Gon sat down, holding his head in his hands. How, how was it possible, that sweet little Jaina came from that monster?

    She’ll be awake by midday tomorrow, Qui-Gon thought. And she’ll have a lot of questions to answer.

    ****************

    Jane’s eyes blinked open slowly. She knew she had been sleeping for a long time, but she still felt tired.

    She rubbed her eyes, jumping slightly as she felt something soft, cool and plastic brushing her arm. She looked down to see a IV drip placed in the back of her hand. She looked around the room. She was in the Healer’s ward, though she wasn’t quite sure how she got there.

    Jane recognized the room instantly. It was the one she always had when she was brought to the Healers. Qui-Gon was sitting in the chair beside her, snoring softly. Jane smiled at him then continued to gaze around the room. She looked for the dry-erase board on the wall that would tell her that day’s date. She wondered how long she had been asleep. She winced as she discovered she was out for four days.

    She continued to read the board. It told her that Winna was her head healer, Bant was the junior healer, an apprentice was the nurse, what the weather was like today.

    But then her eyes caught something at the bottom, a message.

    Good morning, Jaina.

    Her face paled and her eyes widened. How…?

    She turned to look towards Qui-Gon, who was now awake.

    “So.” She said softly.

    “So.” Qui-Gon repeated.

    “I guess you also know…” Jaina started.

    “Yes,” Qui-Gon said gravely.

    They sat there and stared at each other in silence.

    Finally, Jaina sighed.

    “I guess the jig is up.” She said sadly.
  3. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    Okay... so now they know who Jaina/Jane is and her father's identity. When are we going to let in the secret? [face_batting]

    Loved the scene with Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon.
  4. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Awesome post, BookGeek. =D= The Obi/Qui scene was terrific. And youch! Jane's father's identity - bravo on quite the twisty surprise.
  5. Luna_Nightshade Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2006
    star 5
    Glad they were able to figure out what was wrong with Jane/Jaina, and looking forward to seeing how this situation works out. Great update!
  6. Book-Geek Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 28, 2011
    star 3
    @Hazel: I'm glad you loved the Obi-Wan/Qui-Gon scene, because that was so fun to write. And as for when you guys are let in on Jaina's father's identity will be as soon as I hit the post button!:D

    @Jade_eyes: Thanks! The whole story I was trying to give hints, but was worried I was hinting too much. I was really hoping for a twisty surprise here and I'm so glad you found it so!

    @Luna_Nightshade: Thank you!

    @mavjade, @obimom, @AzureAngel2, @Shira_Adola, @EGKenobi, @FuzzyWuzzy


    Chapter Seventeen: …The Truth Will Come Out

    “Go ahead and get Obi-Wan and Jace,” Jaina said, not meeting Qui-Gon’s gaze. “They deserve to know the story too.”

    “How do you know Jace is here?” Qui-Gon asked as he rose to his feet.

    “Both because I sensed him and he is, or rather was, the only one who knew of my real name and was the only one who could have told you.” Jaina said, still not looking at Qui-Gon.

    Keeping a watchful eye on Jaina—though he really didn’t know why—Qui-Gon opened the door and called out for Obi-Wan and Jace. The two entered, followed by four others: Denn, Winna, Bant and Siri. Jane acknowledged each of them, but didn’t object to any of them wanting to hear her story.

    Obi-Wan embraced her and held her for a minute before kissing her on the forehead.

    “Glad to see you amongst the living, Jainy-bug,” He told her.

    “Yeah, you gave us quite a scare for a while there, Short-Stuff,” Siri said, ruffling Jaina’s hair as Winna and Bant fussed over something little on one of the monitors.

    Jace sat hesitantly beside her. He looked up at her nervously and flinched when she turned to him, as if he was expecting to be slapped or yelled at.

    “I know why you told,” Jaina said in a whisper. “And I both forgive and thank you.

    Jace struggled for words, then he finally just hugged her.

    “Don’t scare me like that again,” He whispered fiercely into her ear.

    She smiled.

    “I promise,” She told him as he let go of her. Jace grinned and hastily wiped a tear off his cheek and resumed his seat beside her, taking her hand in his.

    Jaina looked around the room and took a deep breath.

    These are the people I am closest to, Jaina thought, looking around the room. Qui-Gon, my father in everything but blood. Winna, my mother. Denn, an uncle. Obi-Wan, my brother. Siri and Bant, my sisters. And Jace. My best friend. They deserve to hear this story.

    She closed her eyes, then started to speak. She knew the story by heart, occasionally gone over it in her head. But, still, the words sounded foreign as they came out of her mouth. As if the story didn’t belong to her. But obviously, it did.

    “So by now either all or most of you know that my father was an Telosian ex-Jedi. His name was Xanatos.”

    Bant gasped and clamped a hand over her mouth. Jaina ignored her.

    “Nearly ten years ago, strange accidents began to occur at the Temple. Items were stolen, the ventilation and lighting systems would stop working, and a student was kidnapped-” Bant and Obi-Wan both cringed with memory. “-all orchestrated by Xanatos. All to lure his former teacher out to fight him.


    “He realized he needed a place to hide, and decided to keep multiple hiding places,” Jaina continued, not looking at anyone. “He remembered my mother, who had had a childish crush on him years before. He had made sure that she was being given a drug that obscures the mind, knowing that she knew of his turn, and was very careful that she was the only one to receive the drug. Once it was in her system, he came to her in the dead of night and requested that she hide him in her quarters, to which she agreed, being physically and mentally unable to resist. I don’t know all the details of that time, but I know that my mother came to realize what had happened too late.

    “My mother discovered that she had been manipulated as the drugs wore off. Shortly after, she learned of her pregnancy at the same time that he died. She knew if anyone found out about her pregnancy, that she would be forced or encouraged to terminate her pregnancy, which she decided from the very first moment that she wouldn’t do. So she left the Temple.

    “She went to her homeworld of Corellia and met an older woman who would simply go under the name of Nonna who offered her sanctuary and to help raise her child. It was Nonna who had discovered my potential and genius, and it was she who encouraged my mother to train me, though I was barely a year and a half old. ‘She is destined for greatness,’ Nonna would say, though I am still doubting that is possible.”

    She then told of her mother’s mysterious illness and death, her becoming a ward of the state, escape from Corellia, how she came to her alias, and how she came to be at the Temple.

    “How do you know all this?” Obi-Wan asked after a long moment of silence after Jaina finished her tale.

    “My mother told me shortly before her death,” Jaina said. “She… she at least wanted me to know.”

    She still remembered that day…

    In a flash the images of a loving, kind, handsome father who died tragically for a noble reason were gone, replaced by an ugly, bitter and evil version of her daydreams.

    “I am sorry, my love,” Jocelyn whispered as Jaina sat with tears flowing down her face. “This entire mess, it was my fault. I was blinded by emotions. He only came looking for a place to stay the night and I demanded more. But I don’t regret it, because I was blessed with a wonderful daughter. But I must ask for your forgiveness anyway, because I feel I have wronged you.”

    Jaina hugged her mother and gave her forgiveness. Jocelyn hugged her daughter in return, and then asked her to do the impossible.

    “Forgive him?” Jaina spat, anger bubbling inside of her. “What for? I will never forgive him for all the evil he has done. Why should I? I will never forgive him.”

    Jocelyn had sighed and stroked Jaina’s cheek, wiping away the tears of bitterness.

    “You will know in your heart when the time comes, when you will have to make the decision whether to forgive him or to remain to feel this way about him. I pray with all my heart that you will choose the former.”

    Jaina had told her with all her three-year-old stubbornness that she would not, but Jocelyn said no more on the subject.

    Can you forgive him now? The nine-year-old Jaina of today asked herself.

    She shoved the thought away. She had more pressing concerns. She sought out Qui-Gon’s face, trying to read his expression, but he wouldn’t look at her.

    I am not mad at you, he told her through the Force. Merely frustrated with myself.

    But his sudden disconnect from her mind left her feeling otherwise. And it hurt.

    “Can, can I be alone for a while?” Jaina asked. “I need some time to think.”

    Her request was granted and the small crowd in her room disappeared, giving her hugs, kisses and hair-ruffles on the way out the door. She waited till the door was closed and the footsteps were fading away before she broke into tears.
  7. AzureAngel2 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 14, 2005
    star 6
    *has stopped the "Tess of the d'Urbervilles" DVD to read your update*

    “Can, can I be alone for a while?” Jaina asked. “I need some time to think.”

    Her request was granted and the small crowd in her room disappeared, giving her hugs, kisses and hair-ruffles on the way out the door. She waited till the door was closed and the footsteps were fading away before she broke into tears.

    And I need some handkerchiefs now, because this was a very emotional update. It is not fair that life is so harsh on Force users at times. That makes them grow up much, much quicker.
  8. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    Oh, poor Jaina @};-. That was a hard story to tell, but it must have been even harder to listen to when her mother told her.
  9. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
  10. Book-Geek Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 28, 2011
    star 3
    @AzureAngel2 @Hazel @Jade_eyes @mavjade @obimom @Luna_Nightshade @Shira_Adola @EGKenobi @FuzzyWuzzy

    I'm going to update on Monday as well as Friday.

    This chapter uses the song 'Monsters' by Skillet. The # will tell you when to start playing it if you wish to listen.

    Chapter Eighteen: Recovery

    Jaina laid there in her bed for a while, staring up at the ceiling. She had lied, she had withheld information and—above all—she knew no one would trust her now. And why should they? After all, wasn’t she the daughter of a Sith?

    Would Qui-Gon want to continue training her? And if he didn’t, who would take her on?

    She rubbed her eyes with the back of her hand. Fear and worry coursed through her. She tried to reach out for serenity with the Force, but failed. So she went to plan B.

    She was plotting her escape when the door opened.

    “You awake?”

    Jaina sat up to look at Jace, leaning in the doorway, staring at her intensely with his blue eyes. Jaina scowled at him; he was the last person she wanted to see her in her current state.

    “Go away, Jacen Solo.” Jaina demanded sharply, then turned and laid on her side.

    “Oh, that’s a nice way to speak to someone who brought you treats,” Jace said sarcastically.

    Curiosity got the better of Jaina. She looked over her shoulder.

    “What is it?” She asked suspiciously.

    “Chocolate covered puff-mallows,” Jace said in a sing-song voice, waving the bag so Jaina could see it.

    “Jace, you’re the best!” Jaina exclaimed as she sat up. Jace tossed the bag at her and she caught it, opened it and stuffed a puff-mallow in her mouth all in five seconds with a grin.

    “I’ll take that as a thank you,” Jace said with a grin. He brushed a stray hair out of Jaina’s face. “So, how are you feeling?”

    “Physically, I’m okay. Mentally, not so much,” Jaina said, looking down at the bag of treats.

    “Wanna talk about it?” Jace asked.

    Jaina nodded.

    “Will you come sit beside me?” Jaina asked. Jace nodded then moved towards the chair. He almost sat down when Jaina said, “No, on the bed with me.”

    Jace raised an eyebrow, but complied. Being cautious of the tubes and wires around Jaina, she and Jace got into comfortable positions sitting beside each other on the bed.

    “So.” Jaina said, unsure of where to begin.

    “So,” Jace repeated, taking a puff-mallow and popping it in his mouth.

    “It’s hard,” Jaina whispered. “I’ve lived with these secrets for so long. It’s hard to talk about them.”

    Jace swallowed and took her hand.

    “Jaina, you don’t have to talk about them if you don’t want to,” He told her.

    “But I have to, Jace,” Jaina whispered. “Because I don’t know what retributions will come from them.”

    “Retributions?” Jace asked, his brow furrowed. “Why?”

    “Because my father did horrible things, Jace!” Jaina exclaimed. “And I am the result of one of those horrible things! A mistake! A flaw in a seemingly perfect—albeit evil—plan! Had my father not turned to the Dark side-”

    “Had your father not turned to the Dark side, you wouldn’t be here,” Jace reminded her. “You, with all your strange quirks, amazing talents, your vast knowledge and your loving heart. Not to mention your crazy imagination,” He bumped her shoulder with his. “Now, come on, how many daughters of Sith Lords do you know who could ever draw as well as you do? At three years old? Or sing as well as you do, or dance with the passion you have, or have hyperdrive fixing contests with kids twice your age or build a lightsaber from scratch at five years old?

    “Jaina,” Jace took both her hands in his. “You are special. There is nothing denying that. So your dad did some bad things, so what? You can’t control who he is, or that he’s your father. People love you because you love to laugh and smile and make people happy, not because you have a perfect family tree. Nothing bad is going to happen just because people now know who your father is.”

    “How do you know?” Jaina asked, her eyes sparkling with tears.

    “Because I won’t allow it,” Jace promised. He leaned over and kissed her cheek, right where a tear that had escaped ended. “And I promise that I will always be there for you.”

    “Always?”

    “Always.”

    Jaina hugged Jace tight.

    “Thank you,” She breathed, her tears escaping.

    “What I’m here for,” Jace said, rubbing her back.

    * * *

    Jaina had to stay in the med ward for another week, but Jace never left her side. He got her to eat, would talk her out of a foul mood, hold her hand as she drifted off to sleep, and just be there for her.

    Jaina, Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan also had a long talk about what the future would hold in store for them. Qui-Gon alleviated Jaina’s fears immediately and told her that he wouldn’t dismiss her from her apprenticeship. Though it took many conversations and several long hours, the two were back on friendlier terms, to the happiness of both of them.

    However, despite this, many members of the Council wished to see Jaina away from Qui-Gon.

    “You failed with her father, what makes you think you won’t fail with her?” Jorus C’boath demanded in an argument outside the door of Jaina’s hospital room. The argument had gone on for ten minutes after C’boath had come to “relieve” Qui-Gon from his “burden”. Jaina was near the point of tears, despite Jace and Obi-Wan trying to soothe her, when Qui-Gon retaliated, saying,

    “I will not fail with Jaina because she is not her father.” The tall Jedi said boldly. C’boath began to dispute, when both Yoda and Winna came up to them. Yoda—very diplomatically—told C’boath to shut up and Winna told him to get out, that he was disturbing the patients, Jaina in particular, as she had been monitoring the girl’s vital signs when they spiked, indicating that she was upset.

    “She’s a monster,” C’boath said proudly and viciously. “All too soon, that monster will attack. The monster needs to be tamed, and you are obviously not up for the task.”

    Fortunately, Denn and Master Windu had been there to prevent Qui-Gon from physically harming C’boath.

    But the argument left Jaina thinking. And, unfortunately, she was focusing more on C’boath’s words than Qui-Gon’s and Jace’s.
    #
    Jaina had managed to convince her caregivers to just let her stay a night in the medward by herself, that she’d be fine and that she just was starting to feel claustrophobic. Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan, understanding that feeling from numerous stints in a hospital bed, agreed; Jace was more hesitant, but in the end agreed.

    That was how she ended up standing alone in the fresher with the door locked, her hands clenching the sides of the sink with white knuckles, glaring at her reflection in the mirror, staring into her own tear-filled eyes, listening to an imaginary voice repeating C’boath’s words over and over.

    You are a monster, you know, The little snide voice said. You know you’ve always been one. That’s why you told no one about Daddy-dearest for six years.

    “I’m not a monster,” Jaina argued with her reflection. “I’m not.”

    Ah, not yet, you aren’t. It’s just beneath your skin, waiting to come out, ready to kill and manipulate. You can try and deny it, but it won’t do you any good. The beast is ugly, but it will rule.

    “NO!” Jaina screamed.

    She brought her fist up and felt it hit something, heard the crack of something breaking, felt the blood run down her arm. She curled up on the cold tiled floor and sobbed, ignoring the healer’s calls from outside the door, asking if everything was alright.

    You’re a monster. Your heart and soul are already claimed. This is no dream. They don’t care if you scream. No one’s going to save you. You can hate it, but you can’t change it. There’s no stopping this monster.

    The door was opened within a minute and the head healer took one look at the girl lying on the floor, sobbing, then up at the broken mirror that was now covered with the child’s blood and immediately ordered a sedative and bandages.

    “And someone contact Master Jinn,” She whispered.

    ******************

    Qui-Gon came marching through the doors of the medward, angrier than anyone could ever remember. After that day, witnesses would swear that his kind blue eyes turned yellow.

    “What happened?” He demanded sharply. “Where is my goddaughter?”

    “Master Jinn, I must ask you to calm down. Acting like a Sith at this moment won’t be good for you or for Jaina,” Winna said, coming out of a room. She gestured for him to follow her and he did so. She led him down a hallway unfamiliar to Qui-Gon; with a pang, he realized why he had never been down this hall.

    It was the psych wing.

    Winna opened the door to a room and Qui-Gon’s heart broke in more pieces than it had in the past two weeks: Jaina was sleeping, albeit restlessly, her fists clenching and unclenching, her eyes flickering under closed lids. Her face was flushed and covered in a sheen of sweat. Her ankles and wrists were restrained and she had a drip steadily feeding her medication of some sort. The fingers on her left hand were splinted with a bacta cast around them.

    Qui-Gon fell to his knees at her side.

    “What happened, my little flower?” He asked softly, taking her un-bandaged hand. “What has hurt your heart so badly?”

    “Qui-Gon,” Winna said. Qui-Gon slowly lifted his eyes to meet hers. “Up till now, Jaina has never had to worry about what people think of her parentage. While some are accepting, many are not.” Qui-Gon scowled, knowing exactly who she was talking about.

    “C’boath had no right to say such things with her nearby,” Qui-Gon said, pushing back a stand of Jaina’s sweaty hair.

    “While that is true, I believe it set off a mental anxiety that would have revealed itself in time, a bit of Post-Traumatic Stress, if you would call it that,” Winna said. “I do not believe Jaina has really come to terms with what her father became. She thinks she will become just like him, and not a Jedi like her mother. She’s scared and confused, and she has baggage she needs to get over.”

    “How?” Qui-Gon demanded. “By talking to some mind healer?”

    “Actually, I was thinking what she needs is a trip, but only she chooses if she goes or not,” Winna said.

    “I am not taking her to Dagobah,” Qui-Gon said gruffly. “I don’t need her having any more Post-Traumatic Stress than she already has.”

    “I was thinking Telos IV,” Winna said. “To where her father died.”

    **************

    “I’ll go,” Jaina said.

    “Are you sure?” Qui-Gon said. Jaina nodded.

    “I think Winna’s right, that it should help me,” Jaina said. She looked down at her hands; her wrists had only been freed of their restraints half an hour beforehand, once she had been declared mentally stable enough, though she was still being constantly monitored and had to have an adult constantly in the room with her. “I just… I just need to get it over with, and there’s no use in beating around the bush with this. I’m going to lose control of me—my heart, mind, body and soul—if I don’t face this now.”

    Qui-Gon took a deep breath.

    “Alright. But know that if you change your mind, no one is going to make you go through with this.” He told her.

    Jaina nodded and, as she did so, Qui-Gon saw a tear drop down into her lap. He pulled her onto his lap and held her in his arms. They stayed like that for a long time.
  11. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    :( for the stress she's going through but love the emotional support - she has won true friends :)
  12. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    Jacen is so so sweet! :)
  13. AzureAngel2 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 14, 2005
    star 6
    *kicks C´baoth for calling Jaina a monster and calls him a lot of other things in a lot of languages under her breath*

    Also find the chocolate covered puff-mallows a very sweet gesture of Jacen.
  14. Book-Geek Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 28, 2011
    star 3
    @Jade_eyes: That she has.:)

    @Hazel: Yep. Jace is such a sweetie, though he probably wouldn't admit it.;)

    @AzureAngel2: *joins in the kicking of C'baoth* Yeah, I made C'boath a jerk. But do I feel guilty about it? Nope, because that's basically what he is.

    @obimom, @Luna_Nightshade, @Shira_Adola, @EGKenobi, @FuzzyWuzzy

    The song that goes with this chapter is Monsters by Hurricane Bells. The # will tell you when to start playing it if you want to listen.

    Chapter Nineteen: Pools of Acid and Calling Caves

    “You’re sure you want to do this?” Jace asked as the ship was landing. Jaina nodded.

    “I’m sure,” She whispered. Jace squeezed her hand. He had been overprotective of her ever since the incident in the medward and refused to leave her side.

    “You don’t have to do this,” Jace reminded her.

    “No. No I don’t,” Jaina said. “But I both need and want to do it.”

    Jace said nothing, though he opened his mouth several times like he wanted to say something. He was very concerned for her. The first time he saw her after the accident in the medical ward, he barely recognized her. Her eyes had lost their vibrancy and twinkle. Her smile seemed to have gone on a permanent vacation. Her skin was pale from lack of sunlight and, by the way her clothes hung off her, she seemed to be losing weight. Her Force sense also seemed to be reacting to her psychological problems. She could only levitate the lightest of objects, and not even for very long. Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan both felt disconnected from her, and their mind link was weak.

    Jace had continued to be her constant companion until she was discharged. Her mind was always elsewhere, but he did his best to bring her back. He read to her or would play an instrument for her. Sometimes she spoke, often requesting a certain story or song, but otherwise she remained silent, lost in her own world. She had nightmares, even when she was under sedation medication; the only way she got peaceful sleep was when Obi-Wan or Qui-Gon held her.

    Jace had expressed many times that he doubted that this trip would be good for Jaina, and Obi-Wan agreed with him. Jaina ignored him, though, and expressed no change of interest.

    “Last call, Jaina,” Obi-Wan said as he climbed out of the co-pilots seat.

    “I’m here and I’m not turning back,” Jaina said gruffly. “If nothing else, I just want to get this over with.”

    Everyone nodded. They all knew Jaina wouldn’t force herself to do something she couldn’t handle.

    The first thing that struck Jaina about her father’s homeworld was how green and beautiful it was. But the beauty was soon hard to see as they neared Park of Sacred Pools. All too soon, she was kneeling beside what once was a pool full of beautiful, pure water surrounded by volcanos. Because of her father, the water was polluted and was now thick, black acid. She breathed through her mouth so as to not smell the yellow vapors coming off the water.

    “He died the instant he jumped in,” Qui-Gon said in a whisper from where he knelt beside Jaina. He put a hand on her shoulder. “He did many horrible things, things I wish I had foreseen and been able to prevent. But I am glad that he died suddenly. Because no matter what a person does in their lifetime, no one deserves to suffer a long, painful death.”

    Jaina didn’t respond. She stared at the bubbling water, or at least what used to be water.

    “You remind me of him, in a few ways,” Qui-Gon said. Jaina turned her head sharply to glare at her Master. “Do not be offended, please, my flower, for you only remind me of him in wonderful ways. You wish to control your own destiny. You do not want a code to live by. You have your own honor system, and you refuse to break it. Sadly, I saw this in Xanatos and felt pride. I did not know the true intentions behind it, and in many ways I wish I had. But, despite his many faults and misdeeds, there is one thing that I cannot truly regret that he did.”

    “What was that?” Jaina asked, turning away.

    “He gave me a beautiful, wise goddaughter, one I would not trade for anything,” Qui-Gon said, taking her chin in his hand so that she could look at him. “No one is perfect, my flower. And you can’t choose your family. But you can choose what you do with your life. And no matter what you choose, I will always love you.”

    “Even if I turn to the Dark Side?” Jaina asked.

    “I will love you more, even then, and use my love to bring you back to the light,” Qui-Gon promised, kissing her forehead.

    Jaina nodded, a small smile on her face as a tear rolled down her cheek.

    As she and Qui-Gon were climbing to their feet, Jaina turned sharply to look over her shoulder at the entrance to the Mirror Caverns. Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan both tensed. Denn and Jace looked at the Jedi.

    “What is it?” Denn asked.

    “There’s something in there,” Jaina whispered, her head tilted. “It’s cold, but warm as well.” She turned to Qui-Gon expectantly.

    “It is both the Dark Side of the Force, and the Light,” Qui-Gon looked down at Jaina. “You must go in there.”

    “What-” Jaina took a deep breath. “What’s in there?”

    “Only what you take with you,” Qui-Gon said, laying a hand on Jaina’s shoulder.
    #
    Jaina nodded. She hesitantly ran a hand over her lightsaber, which Qui-Gon noticed.

    “You will not need any weapons in there,” Qui-Gon said. Jaina nodded and handed her Master her lightsaber.

    Then, taking a deep breath and without looking back, she made her way towards the Caverns.

    She felt uneasy as she walked past the reflective rocks. She saw millions of her own reflection, saw her own wide eyes and determined frown.

    She turned sharply as she heard something from behind her. It almost sounded like a mixture of footsteps and the wind. She stretched out with the Force, but felt no danger.

    So she continued.

    She was still uneasy as she heard strange noises all around her: water dripping, rocks hitting the ground, bugs and small animals scurrying. And the footsteps/wind.

    She was deep in the caverns, and didn’t know what she was supposed to be looking for. It was getting darker and darker, and she had no light. She was about to turn back…

    Laughter pealed throughout the cavern, proud and mocking.

    “Hello?” Jaina called out, her blood chilling as she listened to her echo. “Hello? Who’s there?”

    She continued to listen to her echo, until it changed. It was her voice, but she wasn’t speaking.

    “’Bout time you showed up. Time to face your monsters.”

    She didn’t know what was going on, but she didn’t want to be here. She started to run, but her foot caught a crack on the cave floor. She remembered hearing the laughter again as she hit the ground.

    All was black for a very long time. How long, she didn’t know. It felt good, lying there, being still. Her own personal hiding place from the galaxy.

    “Oi! Wake up! Nappy time’s over!”

    Jaina opened her eyes slowly. There were two figures standing in front of her. As her eyes adjusted to the dim light, Jaina saw who they were and gasped.

    “Finally awake are you? Good. I’ve been yelling at you for Sith knows how long. Get up.” It was a harsh version of her own voice. Cold and cruel. The speaker was just the same.

    She looked exactly like Jaina. Almost. On her left cheek there was a tattooed blood red moon. Her long brown hair was loose and streaked with red dye. There were dark circles underneath her yellow eyes, the lids painted a dusky red, her pale skin accenting the eeriness. She wore a long-sleeved black shirt and a knee-length black and red skirt with artfully torn leggings underneath. Black boots with a low heel came up to her knees. Her lips, curled into a cruel smile, were painted black. A curved lightsaber was hooked onto her belt.

    “Don’t scare her, Obsidian.” The girl beside her chided gently. She was the exact opposite of her counterpart. This girl had the same long brown hair and hazel eyes identical to Jaina’s. She wore a white shirt and pants and bright white calf-length boots. Her lips, painted a delicate light pink, were curved in a mournful frown and she looked at Jaina almost pityingly. On her right cheek was a light blue sun. She, too, had a lightsaber on her hip.

    “Shut up, Diamond,” The dark girl—Obsidian—snapped. The light girl—Diamond—flinched at the harsh words. Obsidian turned to Jaina. “Get up. Now.”

    Jaina climbed to her feet shakily.

    “Follow us,” Diamond said, taking Jaina’s hand.

    “Where are you taking me?” Jaina asked, still in a slight daze.

    “Deep into the cave,” Obsidian said. She looked over her shoulder and gave Jaina a nasty grin. “You’re going to meet our Daddy."
  15. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Qui-Gon with Jaina --- awwwwww! But the bit at the end :oops: :eek:
  16. obimom Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 31, 2010
    star 4
    HI!! Just took a moment to read up to chapter 16 - so the truth is coming out now, but it will hav eto wait until I can get back to it again.

    Good story, and Jaina's history will be interesting.

    Thanks for the tags..thats a good idea. I wondered how to alert people on my PM list that I had updated.

    :)
  17. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    Meet daddy? Oh, boy... that doesn't sound good.
  18. Luna_Nightshade Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2006
    star 5
    Caught up!

    Jane/Jaina has been through quite a bit in the past couple chapters! Looking forward to what symbolism Obsidian and Diamond have for her. Enjoyed seeing Qui-Gon be so caring. Great updates!
  19. AzureAngel2 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 14, 2005
    star 6
    You have me intrigued here! [face_nail_biting]

    Diamond? Obsidian?

    Can't wait to see where this track will lead us to.
  20. Book-Geek Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 28, 2011
    star 3
    @Jade_eyes: I love writing Qui-Gon and Jaina scenes. Underneath that tough, noble Jedi exterior is a softie.[face_love]

    @obimom: That it will be.[face_mischief]

    @Hazel: No, no it doesn't. But we shall see what comes from it.

    @Luna_Nightshade: Yeah, Jaina's been through a lot, but it's all about to come to an end. For this story, at least.:D

    @AzureAngel2: I think you'll like it and I can't say much more than that.[face_whistling]

    @mavjade, @Shira_Adola, @FuzzyWuzzy, @EGKenobi

    Alright. The last official chapter, not counting the epilogue I'll post on Monday.

    The song that goes with this chapter is 'More Than It Seems' by Kutless and the # will tell you when to start playing it if you want to listen.


    Chapter Twenty: Twilight Child, Sunrise Child

    The cavern both awed and scared Jaina. On the left side of the cavern was a burning inferno, with a floor of burning coals the flames bouncing around a dark hooded figure who stood in the midst of it all, unperturbed.

    On the right side was an icy floor, with glacier walls and snow-banks, somehow unable to melt despite the heat that was radiating from within. A slight woman stood wrapped up in a white cape facing the dark figure on the other side.

    Separating the two sides was a long stretch of dirt. Obsidian went to the left to join the dark figure, while Diamond went to join the woman on the other side. Jaina, unsure of where to go, continued to walk down the dirt path.

    “Hello, Jaina,” The woman said. Jaina sucked in a breath. She knew that voice anywhere, the voice that sang loving lullabies to her as a baby, laughed with her, and gently trained her.

    The voice of her mother.

    “Mommy?” Jaina whispered. She tried to run up to Jocelyn, but was stopped by a glacier appearing in her path. When she backed away, the glacier disappeared.

    “I’m sorry, love,” Jocelyn said sadly, now removing the hood of her cape so Jaina could see her face. “I cannot leave this spot, nor can you join me.”

    “What is this place?” Jaina asked.

    “A split of your sub-conscious,” A deep male voice said from behind her.

    Jaina turned to look into the man’s deep blue eyes that were framed by disheveled black hair. On his cheek was a scar of a broken circle. She had never seen this man before in her life, but knew who he was.

    Her father. Xanatos.

    “Why am I here?” Jaina demanded.

    “So you can see the paths that lie before you,” Xanatos said, walking up and down his boundary, his black cloak billowing behind him.

    “Yeah,” Obsidian said from where she was crouched on top of a black rock. She jumped down to land beside Xanatos. “You can join the Dark Side AKA the Fun and Rebellious Side.”

    “Or you can walk down the path in the light of the Jedi,” Jocelyn interrupted.

    “Where peace and truth rule, not chaos and fear,” Diamond said, a serious look on her face.

    “Please tell me this isn’t going to be just you all telling me the cost-benefits of each side,” Jane said dryly.

    “Oh, no, we have something better,” Jocelyn said, smiling. She walked down the edge of her icy pavilion and came to a wider part of the dirt path. Jaina followed her and stopped where her mother did. At her feet, water came up out of the ground and pooled at her feet.

    The water was clean and pure, like the pools outside had once been. Jaina looked down to see her reflection and saw Obsidian and Diamond both standing on either side of her. A drop of water from above fell into the pool and rippled the water. As it did so, the images melded together so that Jaina face was gone and replaced by half of Obsidian’s face and half of Diamond’s.

    “So, basically,” Jaina said, turning to Diamond. “You’re the part of me that’s the Light,” She turned to Obsidian. “And you’re the part of me that’s Dark.”

    “Got that right,” Obsidian said, grinning viciously. “If you want to get all psychological and what not, I’m the physical embodiment of your inner Dark Side.”

    “You’re not what I want to be,” Jaina said, turning her face away from the girl. Obsidian chuckled and grabbed Jaina’s chin so that their eyes met.

    “Ah, but yet you need me in ways you do not fully comprehend for all your wisdom,” Obsidian said smugly.

    “She is right,” Diamond said, laying a hand on Jaina’s shoulder. “You cannot truly know and live in the Light if you have not ever so lightly touched the Dark, and seen what it creates. What I am saying is that you can’t just live in a bubble, thinking it could never happen to you. You have to see the reality of how easy it is to fall. This isn’t just a choice in your destiny. It’s a choice in how you live your life.”

    “I’ve never heard that before,” Jaina said.

    “It’s not something usually discussed,” Obsidian said, leaning on Jaina with her elbow on Jaina’s shoulder. “You don’t see too many redeemed Dark Jedi running around in that fancy-shmancy Temple of yours, do you? They’re all having way too much fun over here.”

    “Oh, for pity’s sake, Obsidian!” Diamond exclaimed, finally losing her composure. “What is really the ‘fun’ of turning to the Dark Side? You guys are just like Jedi, just evil and risk greater chance of deformation and death by lightsaber!”

    Obsidian thought for a moment, truly dumbstruck

    “We have cookies.” She muttered after a long, awkward silence.

    “Really? ‘Join the Dark Side, we have cookies’?” Jaina said, crossing her arms. “That saying’s about as old as both the Jedi and Sith Codes combined.”

    “Cookies!” Xanatos cried out, staring at Obsidian. “We are Sith! We don’t have any need for cookies!”

    “Is that in the Sith Code?” Obsidian asked, aghast. “I really need to read that thing all the way through.”

    Xanatos clapped a hand to his forehead and muttered something unintelligible.

    “You know, now that I think about it, Dad,” Jaina said with a wicked grin. “Despite what everyone at the Temple says, you were never a Sith Lord. You received no training from a Sith. You’re just a highly glorified wanna- be! You’re about as bad as the actors in those cheesy holo-vids about Jedi!”

    “I beg your pardon?” Xanatos snapped, outraged, turning to glare at Jaina.

    “Well, she has a point, now that I think about it.” Jocelyn said thoughtfully. “You turned to the Dark Side, but were never truly a Sith.”

    Xanatos’ pale face turned as red as the inferno behind him, while Obsidian was doubled over laughing.

    “While this conversation has been entertaining and enlightening, I don’t think Jaina is any closer to deciding which path to take,” Diamond said, having controlled her temper again.

    “No, it hasn’t,” Jaina agreed. “However, it has made me aware that I can’t ignore the issue. I can choose now, but my heart and mind might change later. But I have to change them now so that I can embrace my decision.” She took a deep breath. “And I think my heart at least has changed. My mind with my wisdom and logic may not agree, but I must let my heart lead on this matter.”

    She turned to Xanatos and took a few steps so that she was standing right in front of him. The room was deadly quiet.

    “I should have done this a long time ago,” Jaina said, her hazel eyes meeting his blue ones. “It would have saved me a lot of heartache and bitterness. Father.”

    “Yes?” Xanatos encouraged. For the first time since she entered the cave, he actually seemed to look at her like a father would a daughter.

    “I forgive you,” Jaina said. With those words spoken, her heart felt lighter. “And I ask for your forgiveness for holding a grudge for so long.”

    Xanatos smiled softly. He cautiously reached his hand out. While he did not—nor could not—touch her, he gently stroked the air beside her cheek.

    “We may have chosen different paths,” He said. “But I don’t think I could be prouder. Yes, I forgive you.”

    “Thank you,” Jaina said, smiling.

    “Jaina,” Jaina turned towards Jocelyn. “You made a hard decision, one not many could make, and one you may have to make again. You have done well, my angel. I will always be with you, and be waiting for you for when it is your time. I love you.”

    “I love you too, Mom,” Jaina said, blinking back tears. She turned back to Xanatos, who was watching her intently. She met his eyes, her heart lightened as she, for the first time in her life, felt true affection for her father. It was not a love, or, at least, couldn’t be yet, but she knew that the feeling was brought on by her forgiveness of his deeds

    “You will do well as a Jedi for sure,” Xanatos said. “You have compassion, logic, diplomacy, loyalty, and a very unique combination of mine and your mother’s dueling skills. I’ve seen you duel, and there’s no denying it. It should have been Qui-Gon’s first clue. However, you are also cunning, quick witted, persuasive and tactics-minded. You would make a very fine Sith. But I will not try to lure you either way. From now on, your choices are yours alone. You are your own person. All I can say is good luck. My daughter.”

    “Thank you,” Jaina said. She smiled up at him. “Daddy.”

    Xanatos simply smiled. A true smile that hadn’t graced his face since long before his death. Jaina—whether she knew it or not—had just called him what he’d always wanted to be called by her.
    #
    In a flash of light, the lava and ice of the cavern—and Jocelyn and Xanatos—were gone. The cavern was just that, a cavern. Nothing different or exciting about it.

    “You did well,” Diamond told Jaina, placing a hand on her shoulder.

    “Yeah, yeah, she lived and all that,” Obsidian said, sounding thoroughly disappointed as she rolled her yellow eyes. “Ready to get back to reality?”

    “Yes, your Master and friends are waiting for you.” Diamond said. Jaina nodded.

    As they walked through the maze of reflective tunnels, Obsidian spoke up.

    “So… Since you never flat-out said it, what are you going to choose?” She asked. She tried to sound innocently curious, but her twinkling eyes betrayed her.

    “I learned something from all this,” Jaina said. “It’s not about what you can be, or what others think you will be. It’s what you should be, and what you want to be. What I should be, and what I want to be, is a Jedi. To fight for good, peace, and freedom.”

    “Some freedoms will come with a higher price,” Diamond said. “If you consult the Jedi Code, you will find that to be true.”

    “Which is why I don’t follow the Jedi Code,” Jaina said. “I follow my own code: to serve, to protect, to love, to live as God has ordained. And to never let the past haunt me again. I will always dwell where there is light.”

    “You will do well then,” Diamond said, smiling. “And here is where we part ways.” She said as they stopped. She pointed at another tunnel. “You will walk down that tunnel and rejoin your companions. But first, Obsidian and I want to give you something to remind you of today, to remind you that you always have a choice. That it’s not one decision you make once and are done, but one you must make every day.”

    “You can make the easy decision,” Obsidian piped up.

    “Or the hard one,” Diamond said. “Hold out your hand, palm up.”

    Jaina held out her hand and Obsidian and Diamond each took hold of it with one of theirs. With their free hands, they each brought down their index finger right beside each other in the middle of Jaina’s palm. There was a flash of light, then, smiling brightly, Diamond and Obsidian removed their hands.

    Jaina looked down at her palm and smiled. Painlessly tattooed onto her hand was a circle divided in half. The left half was a blood-red moon, the right half was a pale blue sun.

    “When you go through that tunnel, you will be reunited with your friends,” Diamond said. “We wish you the best of luck, that you find true love, and to know peace.”

    “Diamond and I will always be hanging around,” Obsidian said. She put a finger to Jaina’s temple. “In here. Just call us and we’ll help you out.”

    “Thank you. But I’ve got to know,” Jaina said. “Is this real, or is this all happening inside my head?”

    “Of course this is all happening inside your head,” Obsidian said with a smirk.

    “But why doesn’t that make it real?” Diamond asked, blinking innocently.

    Jaina grinned.

    “Thanks,” She said.

    “You’re welcome. May the Force be with you,” Diamond said, bowing. Then she and Obsidian turned and walked back down the path towards the cavern. They hadn’t taken more than five steps before Obsidian glanced over her shoulder.

    “Hey, when in doubt, remember, doesn’t matter what the Sith Code says, the Dark Side’s got cookies waiting for you!” She said, a grin on her face.

    “Thanks, Obsidian, I’ll remember that,” Jaina said, grinning in response.

    Diamond grabbed Obsidian by the arm, rolling her eyes and failing to resist the urge to smile. They took another step…then they were gone.

    Chuckling, Jaina walked down the tunnel Diamond had pointed to. She emerged to see the waiting faces of Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan, Jace and Denn. She felt herself swept into hugs and her hair ruffled.

    “So?” Qui-Gon said.

    “I succeeded,” Jaina said, beaming at him. “I faced the ghosts of my past. I’m free of them, now and forever. And I received,” She held up her newly marked hand. “Only what I take with me.”

    The grins she received in turn were not only of pride and love, but also joy.

    The Jaina they knew and loved had returned.
  21. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Book-Geek! =D= =D= Cool stuff and full of insight and wisdom! Your writing is vivid and mature. @};-

    Love the warmth and the forgiveness. :)
  22. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    That was a lovely chapter. :) Very inspiring!
  23. AzureAngel2 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 14, 2005
    star 6
    “What is this place?” Jaina asked.

    “A split of your sub-conscious,” A deep male voice said from behind her.

    Jaina turned to look into the man’s deep blue eyes that were framed by disheveled black hair. On his cheek was a scar of a broken circle. She had never seen this man before in her life, but knew who he was.

    Her father. Xanatos.

    “Why am I here?” Jaina demanded.

    “So you can see the paths that lie before you,” Xanatos said, walking up and down his boundary, his black cloak billowing behind him.

    You turn the battle between good & evil, between the forces of the light & the darkness, into a very personal battle. A battle that is fought every day through all the choices we make. I liked this inspiring update. @};-
  24. Book-Geek Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 28, 2011
    star 3
    @Jade_eyes, @Hazel, @AzureAngel2, @Luna_Nightshade, @obimom, @mavjade, @Shira_Adola, @EGKenobi, @FuzzyWuzzy

    I cannot even begin to thank you all for your support as I wrote this story! And it's hard to believe that nearly a year and a move later, I am posting the epilogue.

    I am working on the sequel to this story, as well as some vignettes that will go with the stories (many of which I posted on the Temp Boards on the thread with the daily prompt). The working title for this next story is 'Behind These Hazel Eyes', and posted under the Saga prefix. I'd love to say I know when I'm going to post the first chapter, but I sadly don't. The vignettes will be posted under the title 'A Speck of Green in a Sea of Brown'.

    Now for the epilogue. The song that goes with this is 'Waiting For the World to Fall' by Jars of Clay, and it basically just plays from the beginning of the epilogue to the end. I also have a sort of 'end credits' song that is 'Dear X (You Don't Own Me)' by Disciple (I found it to be rather fitting for Jaina)

    And so, without further ado, the last of Hauntings From the Past


    Epilogue: Waiting for the World to Fall


    Jane crawled out of the tent to watch as the sun rose over the horizon, being careful and quiet enough to not wake Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan. A month had passed since Jane had entered the cave on Telos, and the trio were on a much-needed vacation. Qui-Gon’s friend Wren Honoran had suggested that they take a training mission on Ragoon-6, to enjoy the scenery, wilderness, each other’s company and—most importantly—the peace.

    The peace was what Jaina wanted at that very moment, to bask in the serenity of the sunrise in the pinks, purples and oranges in the soft light of morning. She glanced down at her palm and smiled as she traced a finger over the half-sun, half-moon design. So much had changed for her and her life, but around her things seemed to stay the same. She was still waiting for the other boot to drop, for when it would be openly debated on whether or not she stayed. The only bright side was that only the people she cared for the most treated her the way they had before they knew who her father was. Just as Jace had predicted.

    She and Bant still schemed to find ways of trapping Obi-Wan and Siri in the same room. Winna was still her pseudo-mother at the Temple. Siri still ruffled her hair and called her ‘short-stuff’. She was still ‘Jainy-bug’ to Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon’s ‘flower’.

    And Jace still calls me ‘Greensleeves’, Jaina thought with a chuckle as she pulled her green and brown robe around her tighter.

    And yet she still felt like it could be all gone in a second.

    It can, Jaina reminded herself. Think of how many times Qui-Gon has been wounded on missions. Or when Obi-Wan was in the hospital for so long after he was pushed down those stairs. Or when you became ill with something the Healers had never seen before.

    But for now, all was right with the galaxy. At least in Jaina’s part of it. And she hoped it stayed that way.

    She stood up from her rock as she felt Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon stirring from inside the tent. By the time they emerged, Jaina had started the fire for cooking their breakfast.

    They were half-way through their meal when they heard the crunching of leaves from behind their campsite and immediately drew their weapons. They were surprised to see Wren come out of the woods.

    “Master Honoran,” Jaina said as she deactivated her blade. “You do remember that we are supposed to find you, right?”

    Wren grinned at Jaina and ruffled her hair.

    “I know that, you cheeky bugger,” He said. “But I just received an urgent message for you from the Council.”

    Jaina and Obi-Wan glanced at each other, both worried and curious, as Qui-Gon read the message.

    “We will leave immediately,” Qui-Gon said after he finished reading.

    “Where are we going?” Obi-Wan asked as Wren left to prepare their ship for departure.

    “First to Coruscant, than Naboo,” Qui-Gon said, dousing their fire. “The Trade Federation is blockading Naboo. Chancellor Valorum asked for us specifically.” He looked up at the two apprentices. “I know you two were enjoying our break, and I’m sorry we have to cut it off so soon.”

    “That’s alright, Master,” Jaina said as she started packing up their things. “We know how it goes.”

    “How about I make a request with the Council that after our mission, we come back here and finish the training mission. With no interruptions.” Qui-Gon suggested and smiled as he watched his Padawans’ faces light up.

    “Gives us motivation to get the mission done faster,” Obi-Wan said with a grin.

    And so, the trio continued to talk and laugh as they dismantled their campsite. Little did they know just how precious those hours would be.
  25. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Sweet respite from nonstop missions and I'm glad Jane had a chance to process everything that happened and yet is still doing so, to a certain degree, feeling like it could all end in a moment [face_thinking] Glad her true friends are showing who they are, which usually happens after a big revelation like they just got. [face_laugh] about her and Bant's schemes with Obi/Siri -- looking forward to their ultimate success [face_laugh]

    Your further projects sound super and their titles - have reeled me in already :) :)
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