Before Old Demons Die Hard - *Winner for Best AU and Best All Around; Tied for Best Ensemble!*

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by p_stotts, Oct 22, 2008.

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  1. p_stotts Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 21, 2001
    star 4
    "Old Demons Die Hard"
    BY: p_stotts
    CATEGORY: AU, H/C, drama
    SETTING: 7 years pre-TPM
    RATING: PG
    SUMMARY: Qui-Gon is injured in a pirate raid, and Obi-Wan is taken prisoner. The Jedi master?s ensuing search for his padawan garners more than the expected results.
    DISCLAIMER: I don?t own any recognizable characters from the SW universe. All the others are mine, however.
    FEEDBACK Yes, yes! *jumps up and down, clapping hands*
    A/N - Italics denote thoughts. Asterisks** denote telepathic communication.



    Chapter 1 ? The Gentleness of Strangers

    Hermano held an expensive silk handkerchief to his nose as he made his way down the narrow, dim passageway of the slave hold. Doors lined both walls at ten-pace intervals. Each door had a small viewscreen so that potential buyers could observe the being inside each chamber. His guide, a short human male with a gut that hung over his belt, a balding head, and three-day?s growth of beard, strutted beside him carrying an electrode-whip.

    Over the years, Hermano had visited hundreds of these places in the service of his master. In all that time he?d never gotten used to the stench of unwashed bodies and excrement. A sense of hopelessness hung in the air, weighing heavily on his psyche. He drew in a deep breath through his scented handkerchief and consciously flushed the oppressive feelings from his mind.
    Visiting places such as this was a necessary part of his work. Sometimes he?d find a hidden jewel amongst the discarded wretches in the lower levels. He knew most of the slave traders looked on these poor beings as a liability, and if some poor sucker was willing to actually pay for them, well? so much the better.

    Hermano was just beginning to think that he wouldn?t find anything worth saving on this trip when his empathic senses picked up a tremor pain and despair from the cell to his right. He activated the viewscreen, but could see nothing in the dark room. Still, a niggling feeling urged him to pursue the matter. ?Open this door. I want to have a look inside."

    "Ya wan?t fine anathin in thar bud trubble," the slaver said. Spittle trickled down from the corner of the man?s mouth. He wiped it away with the back of his hand and turned to walk away.

    "Open it," Hermano said, pressing on the other man?s mind slightly.

    "Ahrat, but Ah warnt ya.? He waddled over to the control panel by the door and keyed in a rather long code, which Hermano had no trouble remembering? just in case.

    He stepped into the cell ahead of the slaver and allowed his eyes to grow accustomed to the darker interior, now dimly lit from the corridor. A figure in tattered clothes huddled in the corner. Pressing his handkerchief more firmly over his nose, Hermano drew close enough to ascertain the being as a young, human male. Clumps of dirt and dried blood matted down his shaggy hair, making it impossible to recognize the true color. Sweat, grime, cuts and bruises covered what skin was visible. Both eyes were swollen shut, and he hugged his chest in a way that hinted at broken ribs. Fresh blood trailed from the corner of his mouth and down his chin. Judging by the lack of wrinkles, the unfortunate man was probably somewhere between twenty and thirty cycles old.

    Hermano shot the slaver a disgusted look. In his current condition, this man couldn?t possibly give anyone trouble. He knelt down beside him for a closer examination and immediately noticed two things, a Force collar and a padawan braid. Sighing, he climbed to his feet. "I?ll give you twenty daktari for him.?

    "Ah cannut let im go for thad miserble prahss!" the slaver protested. "E?s wort at leese fahv hunderd daktara!"

    "Wrong. He WAS worth five hundred daktari until he was beaten into submission. Now I?ll be lucky if he doesn?t die before I get him to my transport. I?m doing you a favor by taking him off your hands. YOU should be paying ME for the service."

    The slaver looked from Hermano to the miserable figure on the floor. The man?s changing thoughts clearly showed in the expressions
  2. Jedi_Perigrine Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 22, 2008
    star 4
    Awesome start! I can't wait to see what kind of dude this Hermano is, and just what's happening to their mysterious (I have my suspicions ;) )young injured guest. Great job! Love the slaver's accent, you did real well with that!
  3. earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    Must be Obi:_| But where is Qui-Gon?:eek:
  4. JediXManSerenaKenobi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 27, 2007
    star 4
    Wow, Peg, this is fantastic. I can't wait to see where you take this. Poor Obi!! He always does get into the worst of trouble, doesn't he?

    - Serena
  5. Valairy Scot Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    Dang it girl - you're good (writer)! Of course I'm suckered in and dying to know more.
  6. Falcon Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 7, 2002
    star 8
    Oh I'm very curious to who this person is. Update soon :)
  7. Force_Chick Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 18, 2008
    star 1
    I like the begining you have here on this. I'd like to see where you go with the slaves and if/how Obi-Wan gets out of this situation. Please add me to the list too ;)
  8. The_Hutt Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jan 7, 2004
    star 1
    Very nice start! I enjoyed it very much, very well written. I am interested to find out just how long Obi-Wan has been in that slaver's place...and the character Hermano, is there a reason his name means "brother" in Spanish, or is that just a coincidence? :) Excited to read more!
  9. jedidas3 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 25, 2007
    star 3
    Okay, so I'm addicted already.;) Thanks for the PM and please keep me on the list for this.

    Wonderful writing as always!=D=
  10. p_stotts Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 21, 2001
    star 4
    Thanks, Peri! I appreciate the compliment. I hope the slaver came across as I intended... greedy, slovenly, not too bright, etc. Yes, I know. It's cliche, but it fits, so why mess with what works?

    Here he is! :D

    Yes, it's a wonder that Qui-Gon's not completely gray by now. [face_laugh]

    Your wish is my comman, milady. [face_batting]

    Wonder no more. Well... maybe. [face_whistling]

    Thanks, Force_Chick. The slavery angle will hopefully take an unexpected turn soon, but first... let's check in on Qui-Gon.;)

    Thanks, Hutt, and welcome. I didn't realize Hermano's name meant "brother," but it fits the story very well, as you'll see later on. If you want me to add you to the PM list, let me know.

    Thanks, jedidas3! Here's your daily fix. :D

    Chapter 2 ? The Search Begins

    Qui-Gon Jinn placed an extra set of tunics and pants in his travel bag. The movement sent sharp pain shooting down his arm. He winced and rubbed his newly healed shoulder. The Jedi healers had just released him after more than a month in their care, his injuries being the result of a pirate raid on the transport he and his padawan had been traveling on.

    At the thought of Obi-Wan, he closed his eyes a moment and took a deep breath. It wouldn?t do his padawan any good for him to let his emotions get the better of him. The whole time he?d been laid up, search parties had turned up nothing more than confirming that the pirates had indeed taken Obi-Wan as a prisoner - alive. Now Qui-Gon was preparing to resume that search, even if he had to go against Council orders to do so.

    He sensed Mace Windu hovering in the doorway of his sleep chamber. "You should at least wait another few days before rushing off. You?ve barely recovered from your injuries."

    "I have to find him." Qui-Gon continued to pack with his back to his friend. "He?s been out there on his own for over a month, enduring Force knows what. He probably thinks I?m dead."

    "Qui? I know you don?t want to hear this right now, but have you considered the possibility??"

    "NO, MACE!" Qui-Gon whirled around. "I won?t even consider that possibility! I know he?s still alive! I can feel him HERE." He pointed to his head. "And HERE!" He pointed to his heart. "And I?ll keep searching for him until I have hard evidence to the contrary, even if I have to leave the Jedi to do it!"

    Mace pushed away from the door frame. "Well then? I?m going with you. You could use the help, and if the truth be told, I don?t really believe he?s dead either."

    Qui-Gon allowed a grateful
  11. JediXManSerenaKenobi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 27, 2007
    star 4
    Yay! Qui-Gon to the rescue! Can't wait for more! Awesome update, Peg!

    - Serena
  12. Valairy Scot Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    Absolutely enthralling - and I just love how Mace is with Qui all the way. One just breathes your stories as if we are participants along with the characters.

  13. Falcon Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 7, 2002
    star 8
    Awesome update, Qui-Gon will find Obi-Wan, I'm sure of it :D

    Loved how Mace took Qui-Gons side in all of this which is great :D

    Can't wait for more :)
  14. jedidas3 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 25, 2007
    star 3
    You go Qui-Gon!![face_dancing] Wonderful update and the only question I have is where is the next one?
  15. p_stotts Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 21, 2001
    star 4
    Thanks, Serena! :D

    [face_blush]That's high praise indeed, Valairy. Thank you! Now let's check in on Obi-Wan.

    If it's more you want, more you shall receive. Read on!

    :cool: Why, right here, of course.

    A/N - For those of you waiting for an update to Sanctuary, I'm working on it. Just be patient with me. :D


    Chapter 3 ? Out of the Fire and Into the Frying Pan?

    "Master, it?s good that you?re finally home." Hermano took his employer?s coat and handed it to the valet droid. ?I have much to report.?

    The other man slapped Hermano on the back. "It?s good to be home. Come; let?s get comfortable before we talk business." He headed toward his private sitting room.

    Hermano followed him into the room and headed straight for the refreshment station, a recessed cabinet made of solid bluewood from the planet Drongar ? rich and extravagant, but such could be said about his employer. He keyed in the access code and the door swung open. Knowing his master?s preferences, he removed a crystal decanter of Bespin port ? only the best, of course.

    He filled two small crystal goblets with a finger of the port and replaced the decanter. The cabinet door closed itself with a soft snick. With the drinks in hand, he walked over and settled into the replihide arm chair. Across from him, his master lay sprawled out on a murripin with his stocking feet resting on the bluewood serving table and his head and shoulders propped up by several oversized throw pillows.

    Hermano set both goblets on the serving table.

    The other man opened his eyes and gave Hermano a lazy smile then reached for his glass. His neo-leather boots sat on the floor next to the murripin. The man indulged in many luxuries, but he was also practical. Neo-leather held up better on harsh terrain than genuine leather. Now his dress shoes, that was a different matter altogether. "How did you fare on your trip, my friend?"

    "Very well, Master." Hermano sipped his drink. The robust, nutty flavor warmed his throat going down and settled pleasantly in his stomach. "I found twenty-one excellent prospects, eleven of them Force-sensitive to one degree or another. One of those is a Jedi padawan. Patri estimates he?s about eighteen cycles old."

    The master bolted upright and locked gazes with Hermano. "A Jedi padawan? Are you certain?"

    Hermano swallowed at being on the receiving end of a look that was usually reserved for traitors and miscreants.

    His master smiled and relaxed his body language. ?Forgive me; your news startled me.

    Hermano returned the smile and downed the rest of his drink. "The slavers had him confined in the lower slave hold. He was wearing a Force collar and has a braid behind his right ear.?

    The other man sat back against the pillows and stared up at the ceiling while absently stroking his lower lip. His coal-black hair fell in waves, just below his shoulders. Normally, he kept his hair tied back, but often removed the elastic band when relaxing at home. His golden skin tone and pale blue eyes made him irresistible to most females he encountered, something he occasionally took advantage of. However, he could also be a very intimidating man when the moment called for it, as his previous look demonstrated. However, Hermano had always found him to be kind and fair toward all the servants - a fact that made him fiercely loyal.

    "Where is t
  16. earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    So he is with Xanatos and what will he be? The pawn in a game between Xanatos and Qui-Gon?
  17. Valairy Scot Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    A good Xan? It appears to be so, or at least, a kind one.

    Poor Obi is really in bad shape, poor kid. He needs a hug [face_hug].
  18. JediXManSerenaKenobi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 27, 2007
    star 4
    Ooh, Xanatos! Wow, this is really interesting - and he seems to be a decent guy here... but then the people are calling him "My Lord", so I'm not sure. Update again soon! Loving this story. You really make me feel for Obi-Wan - he's been through so much!

    Keep up the fantastic writing, Peg! :)

    - Serena
  19. Falcon Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 7, 2002
    star 8
    Update soon

    Xanatos interesting, acting good on Obi-Wan? But what does he really want? They call him Lord but ummm

    okay, need an update soon
  20. jedidas3 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 25, 2007
    star 3
    I agree...Obi needs a hug![:D]

    Nice post with a twist...can't wait for more!
  21. Jedi_Perigrine Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 22, 2008
    star 4
    Great stuff! Keep it going!
  22. Gkilkenny Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 27, 2004
    star 4
    Whoa! I go away for three days and miss this excellent rewrite.
    Poor Obi-Wan, you love to torture him.o_O

    It's such fun isn't it[face_devil]
    This is my kind of story.=D= Thanks for the PM Master.
  23. charie Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 6, 2007
    star 2
    Wow! This is great. Poor Obi "blew his vocal cords" from screaming. That breaks my heart. Is Xan a good guy in this one? Please keep me posted.=D=
  24. p_stotts Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 21, 2001
    star 4
    [face_not_talking] I'm not saying. Keep reading the story to find out.

    Yes, but is Xanatos playing a game, or has he really changed? :confused:

    Thanks, Serena. I'm glad you're enjoying the story so much. Read on for more.

    Yes, that's the question. Is Xanatos for real or not? Read on.

    I'll pass your [:D] onto Obi-Wan.

    :D Thanks! I think I will.

    Glad you're enjoying it, Padawan. Oh, and next time you disappear for days without telling me, I'm giving you extra meditations! I was worried about you. Well, not really, but a master just can't overlook a padawan breaking curfew and such.;)

    Yeah, we just love to put Obi through heck. Read on for more.


    Chapter 4 ? They Mean Well

    The Secretary of Internal Affairs for the planet Romedin stood up from his desk. Repressed anger radiated from him. The coloring of his face, neck, and bald head matched his red ceremonial robes. ?I can assure you, Master Jedi, that this government neither condones nor tolerates slavery on this planet.? A few more inches of height would have made him seem more imposing. As it was, he barely reached Qui-Gon?s bicep, making his tirade nearly comical.

    Qui-Gon forced his expression to remain serious, not wanting to antagonize the man any more than necessary.

    Mace leaned forward and placed the sales document they?d hacked from the slaver?s computer onto the other man?s desk. ?As you can see, this record of sale clearly states that a representative of someone on Romedin purchased this slave.?

    ?That doesn?t mean they brought him here!?

    Qui-Gon drew his hand from right to left across his body. ?There?s no need to get angry.?

    The man?s eyes glazed over. ?There?s no need to get angry.?

    Qui-Gon?s hand moved left to right. ?Let?s sit down and discuss this calmly.?


    The Secretary smiled and retook his seat. ?Let?s sit down and discuss this calmly.?

    Mace smirked at him and returned his attention to the Secretary. ?We are well aware of your government?s stance on slavery and are in no way suggesting its involvement in this case. However, you must admit that a person with enough wealth at his disposal could circumvent the laws and remain undetected.?

    The Secretary?s expression tightened again, but he nodded his agreement.

    Mace smiled. ?We just want to look at a list of your wealthiest citizens so we may continue our search for Master Jinn?s missing padawan learner. I assure you that we will handle the investigation with the utmost diplomacy and tact.?

    ?Very well, Master Jedi, but if I receive o
  25. Valairy Scot Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    Yeah, reunited! Now if Obi will just wake up to see that Qui is alive!

    Let's hope Mace and Qui didn't make Obi-Wan worse by disconnecting him. Can't wait until Xan comes into the picture, too.
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