Saga The Bond [Qui-Gon/Shmi, Anakin AU] Chapter 15 2/15/13

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Alexis_Wingstar, Sep 29, 2012.

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  1. Alexis_Wingstar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2006
    star 4
    Title: The Bond
    Author: Alexis_Wingstar
    Beta: Valairy Scot (starting with chapter 5). Any mistakes in grammar and punctuation are on my part, not hers.
    Genre: AU, drama mostly
    Characters: Qui-Gon Jinn, Anakin, Shmi and others.
    Summary: Qui-Gon survived the duel with Darth Maul, and is training Anakin. He has to break a few rules to help the youth excel.
    Disclaimer: Star Wars belongs to George Lucas, I'm just dancing in his sandbox.
    Concrit welcome via PM.
    _____

    The Bond
    Prologue:


    The eleven-year old Jedi tried to contain his excitement and curiosity as he boarded the small spacecraft in the Temple’s landing bay. After stowing his bag in the appropriate storage unit, he followed Master Jinn into the cockpit. He was astonished when Qui-Gon settled into the co-pilot seat. The older Jedi smiled slightly as he gestured toward the pilot’s chair. The boy did not even try to hide his eagerness as he obediently sat in the seat that made him look smaller than he already was.

    “Where are we going, sir?” His eyes widened as he saw the coordinates that were already entered into the navigation station. He looked at his master, almost afraid to speak. “Tatooine?” Part of him was afraid that he had gotten into one trouble too many, and he was going to be returned to his mother. However, he dismissed that idea. I’d be formally kicked out of the Order, wouldn’t I? I’d be taken to face the Council.

    “You haven’t forgotten the conversation we had on your last life day, have you?”

    “Which one, sir... the one where you chastised me for eating the cake too fast or the importance of Jedi decorum lecture?” He was relieved to sense amusement rippling along their bond.

    “I believe that was the same conversation.” Qui-Gon’s eyes met the initiate’s as he added, “I meant the one in front of the safe.”

    Anakin broke eye contact by looking at the joystick on the pilot’s console. Of course he remembered that conversation.

    “I have something you need to see, Anakin.” Qui-Gon led him over to the wall of his quarters. Though the boy was staying with the other initiates until he formally passed the initiate trials, he was allowed visit his Master’s chambers. The man tapped a switch and a nearly invisible square panel opened to reveal a small door. “Open,” he simply stated, and the portal opened. The boy tilted his head in puzzlement when he saw the Tatooine credits that lay within. “Every mission I go on, the Jedi Counsel gives me an allotment of Republic credits to carry it out. Ever since I took you on as my apprentice, I have set aside a small amount from those credits and converted them to Tatooine currency.”

    Anakin swallowed before asking, “Why?”

    “So we may free your mother. I want you to know it was here in case something happens to me before we can do that.”

    The boy just stood in shock for a moment as he stared into Qui-Gon’s eyes. “Really?” The question was a barely audible whisper.

    “I regret I couldn’t free her when we were first on Tatooine, but I know how you worry about her. I wish to unleash you from that burden so you can concentrate on things more necessary for your Jedi training.”

    Anakin could barely breathe. A hot tear burned his cheek, and he blushed as he quickly brushed it away. “Thank you,” he stammered as more tears blurred his vision. He felt a hand on his shoulder. Taking a half step, he hugged Qui-Gon and wept in the man’s embrace.

    Once again he felt a hand on his shoulder. This time, he managed to contain the threatening tears as he looked over at Master Jinn and nodded. “Yes, I remember.”

    “It’s time to free your mother.”

    Not able to hold his sheer happiness within, he raised both arms up and yelled, “Yes!” Seeing Qui-Gon wince and place a finger in his ear, the boy blushed, “Sorry, Master.”

    The man only smiled before asking, “Well, what are you waiting for? Let’s go.”

    “Yes, sir!”
    Last edited by Alexis_Wingstar, Feb 15, 2013
  2. Nyota's Heart Fanfic Edited Winner / Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host Game Winner
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Oh, Alexis! How wonderful! Wonderful! The relationship between Anakin and Qui-Gon -- :) and setting Shmi free. Doesn't matter what the official reason is [face_laugh] -- it's a true gift, for both mom and son. :D

    Tags, please. :)
  3. Alexis_Wingstar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2006
    star 4
    @Jade_eyes you're it. :p I have always contemplated how different it would be if Qui had survived that fateful duel and was able to train Anakin.

    Chapter 1
    Freed

    Light from the window fell upon the frail form of Shmi Skywalker. The weak moan that escaped her lips hurt her throat and caused her to start coughing. She continued to lie upon the mattress as she struggled to regain her breath. Then she realized that it must be about mid-morning. She struggled to sit up, but found she lacked the strength.

    Even as she began to drift back to sleep, she heard Watto’s voice. “Shmi?”

    She tried once more to rise from her bed as she wondered why he was there. He had never come to her quarters in the many years she had been his slave. She was able to sit up, but found she did not have the energy to even try to stand. She slumped against the wall behind her as her master entered her bedroom.

    “I’m sorry, I overslept,” Shmi said weakly as she once more tried to stand, but dizziness overwhelmed her and she fell back onto the bed.

    She barely heard Watto exclaim, “Shmi!” She felt a hand on her forehead and heard him muttering something she could not make out.

    Minutes later, she felt someone put a hand under her head and raise it slightly. She opened her eyes and saw it was once again her master. He was holding a glass of water and put it to her lips. More dribbled down her chin than went into her mouth at first as he spoke, “Come on, Shmi, drink.”

    As the warm liquid slid down her throat, she slowly felt strong enough to sit up. She took the glass from Watto and thirstily finished off the water.

    “Stay alive, Shmi. I can’t afford to bury ya.”

    Her lips pulled up in a wan smile. In spite of Watto’s gruffness, she knew he cared about her. He had been kind to her since Anakin left, even treated her with respect when no one else was around to notice. Times had been rough, especially in the past few months, and she had not eaten for three days. She was sure that was the reason for her feebleness.

    “I have something for ya.”

    Watto held out a small sack, and she took it. She peered inside to see a rotted apple and a stale bread roll.

    “It’s all I could find behind Gimbo’s bakery this morning.” He shrugged.

    She struggled to break the roll in half, then handed one part to Watto. “Thank you. You need to eat, too.”

    He waved a hand in dismissal. “I already ate.” He turned around and glided to the door. “Come to the shop when you feel able to get out of bed.”

    For a moment, she just stared after the slave owner as he disappeared. Then her hunger overtook her and she ate the stale bread and bruised fruit as though it were a feast. Though it was a meager meal, it made her feel strong enough to stand. She walked slowly into her kitchen and filled the glass with water before heading outside, still feeling a weak, but determined to keep going.

    Ten minutes later, she entered Watto’s shop to see a imposingly tall man standing with his back to her and talking to her master.

    “See, there she is,” the Toydarian slavemaster pointed to her.

    The long-haired man turned, and she gasped in sudden recognition. “Qui-Gon Jinn!” She looked around, hoping to see Anakin. “My son... how is he... is he here?”

    “He’s fine. I told him to stay on the ship.” A smile played at the corner of his lips as he added, “He isn’t too happy with me right now, but I wanted to make sure you were still... here before I let him come.”

    The pause in the last sentence was very slight, but Shmi knew the Jedi had meant he wanted to make sure she was alive. The longing to see and hold her son was so overwhelming, she could not say anything.

    “This Jedi wishes to purchase you,” Watto informed her, “but refused to negotiate until he saw you.” The Toydarian looked back at Qui-Gon, “Now you see her. One-thousand druggets is a fair trade.”

    The Jedi raised an eyebrow. “For an old, starving slave? I don’t think so.”

    Shmi tried not to take offense as she walked over to the repair bench and began working on the transponder unit she’d been trying to fix for the past couple days. She knew part of the bargaining process on the part of the buyer was to talk down the value of the product they wished to purchase. In this case, she was the merchandise. Almost a lifetime of being a slave made her used to being referred to in this way. However, this coming from the Jedi who had freed her son felt wrong. She tuned out of the conversation as she concentrated on the job she was doing.

    “Fine, four hundred druggets it is!” Watto’s annoyed voice broke through the slave’s ponderance of the transponder. She held her hand up to muffle her gasp at the amount the Jedi had paid for her.

    “And what of the slave transmitter?” Qui-Gon asked.

    “Eh, here it is, but itsa deactivated.” As the ex-slave owner handed the device over to the Jedi as well as the owner documents, he added, “I didn’t want her blown to smithereens if she wandered off in a daze.”

    The big man stared at Watto with narrowed eyes.

    “She’s yours, now, Jedi,” Watto spoke gruffly. “Take her and go already. I can’t say itsa pleasure doing business with ya, ‘cause it wasna.”

    Qui-Gon politely bowed his head then turned to Shmi. He inclined his head to her and extended his arm toward the exit. “After you, ma’am.”

    Legs feeling unsteady, she walked across the cluttered floor, and hesitated in the doorway to look back at her former owner.

    “You’re still here? Of wit’ ya already, I’ve work to do!” The Toydarian then turned away and flew out the back, muttering his usual complaints against the universe in general.

    Sighing sadly, she left Watto’s shop the for the last time.

    ~~~

    Qui-Gon frowned as he followed Shmi outside. He had sensed a strange bond between her and Watto. He shook his head, putting the thought aside since it was not important at the moment. He could sense her anxiousness to see Anakin, which was understandable. What worried him was her obvious frailty. Though she had been skinny when he first met her, she had not been emaciated as she was now. He gently took a hold of her elbow as he stopped. When she turned to look up at him with a puzzled expression on her face, he asked, “Do you feel alright?”

    Her smile was warm yet weak. “It’s nothing a couple good meals won’t fix.” At his frown, her voice became defensive. “Don’t blame Watto, he did his best by me. He just had some bad luck in gambling, and business hasn’t been doing so well. He’s been foraging for the both of us.”

    Qui-Gon’s lips thinned. Deciding not to push the subject, he changed it. “Of course, you’re free to do what you wish now.” He removed a pouch from his robes and held it out to her. “Here is some money you can use until you find a job. I had hoped to give you more, but...” he let that drop with a shrug, knowing she would understand that he had paid more for her than he thought he would have to. “We’ll take you to any planet you wish to go.” Remembering how she had said in their last meeting that she was destined to stay on Tatooine, he quickly added, “That is, if you wish to leave here.”

    He sensed mixed feelings coming from Shmi as she remained silent. Briefly looking back at the shop, he recalled some of the cruel things he said during the bargaining with Watto. “I’m sorry for my choice of words back there... I wanted to save the bulk of the money for you... so you’re new life as a freed slave would have a good start.”

    Shmi shifted her arm so that his light grip on her elbow slid down to her hand. Lightly squeezing his strong fingers, she shook her head. “You don’t need to apologize. I know how haggling works. I’m grateful for your kindness and generosity.”

    As she spoke, Qui-Gon noted how each bone in her hand stood out. It will take more than a couple meals before she’s a healthy weight. He was alarmed at how cold her fingers felt, but said nothing. Gently turning her palm up, he gave her the small bag of coins and closed her fingers around it. “I wish I could have freed you sooner.”

    Shmi’s free hand shook as she raised it to touch his cheek. He could sense the great effort it took for her to lift it. “Please, no regrets. You have done more than I dared hope for. Please, may I see Ani now?”

    “Of course!” He took a hold of the hand at his cheek and placed it in the crook of his elbow as he added, “He’s very eager to see you.” He guided her towards the spaceport, then paused once more. “Do you have anything you wish to bring with you? That droid Anakin made for you, perhaps?”

    “Yes, but I need to see my son first, please.”

    He bowed to her. “Very well, my lady. This way, then.”

    They had only taken two steps when the Jedi felt the weight of her hand on his arm become heavier. Quick reflexes allowed him to catch her before she was halfway to the ground. “Shmi!”

    Before he had even said her name, he knew she could not answer. Easily lifting her frail frame, he cradled her in his strong arms. He made sure her head rested against his chest. He used the Force to retrieve the dropped money pouch even as he swiftly carried her to what passed for a hospital in Mos Espa.

    Rushing into the emergency entrance, he projected his voice using the Force to demand attention. “This woman needs immediate medical attention!” He gently placed Shmi’s slight form on a gurney without asking permission as a nurse came over to them.

    “What happened to her?”

    “She fainted. She’s malnourished.”

    “I see that,” the nurse replied absently as she took the patient’s vitals. “What’s her name?”

    “Shmi Skywalker.”

    Calling for an orderly to her, she told him, “Take this patient to 16B.” Turning to look up at Qui-Gon, she asked, “What is your relationship to the patient?”

    He paused for a few moments before answering. Though he had just bought her, he did not consider her for even a moment as his slave. “I’m her lover,” he lied stone faced as he subtly waved his fingers.

    She nodded brusquely and said, “Please go have a seat in the waiting room.”

    He bowed slightly to her retreating back then did as she instructed. As he strolled across the busy emergency room, he took his comlink from his belt. “Anakin.” When the boy did not answer right away, he said again, “Anakin, do you read me?”

    “Yes, Master.”

    “Come to the hospital.” There was a long pause. “Do you remember where it is?”

    “Yes, of course... what’s wrong with my mom?”

    “Just get here quick.”

    “Yes, sir!”

    Qui-gon replaced the comlink to his belt. Please hold on Shmi. Your son will be here soon.
    Last edited by Alexis_Wingstar, Nov 12, 2012
  4. earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    Nice beginning, getting into the action immediately
  5. Nyota's Heart Fanfic Edited Winner / Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host Game Winner
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Oh dear [face_nail_biting] Is it then too late? [face_worried] Eagerly awaiting more. :D
  6. skyag Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 11, 2010
    This looks really good...Can't wait to see where you go with it!
  7. Alexis_Wingstar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2006
    star 4
    @earlybird-obi-wan - thanks :)

    @Jade_eyes - I admit to playing with the idea of Shmi dying...

    @skyag - I can't wait, either. :p


    Chapter 2
    Re-acquaintance

    Anakin’s heart raced more because of his fear for his mother than because of the exertion of running down the streets of Mos Espa. He could barely sense her through the Force. His inattention to his surroundings allowed a drunken Rodian coming from one of the many bars in the city to bump into the young Jedi initiate. After stumbling only slightly, the boy ran on, ignoring the intoxicated cursing that followed him. He quietly murmured a few more cuss words of his own when his legs would not carry him fast enough. Remembering how he heard at the Temple that Jedi could use the Force to increase their speed, he desperately reached out. Next thing he knew, it seemed those he passed were standing still. A minute later, he was standing in front of the hospital.

    “Wizard,” he whispered as he stepped inside. Hesitating just beyond the entrance, he looked around. He could sense the faint life-force of his mother through the double doors marked “Emergency Room” in both Basic and Huttese. To his right, he could sense Qui-Gon through their bond, even though the boy could not see him. He forced himself to a slow pace as he went where he knew Master Jinn was. and tried to calm his nerves. He took a deep breath then slowly released it with each step. He swallowed as he finally caught sight of the older Jedi sitting on the floor with his legs folded in front of him. His eyes were closed, and Anakin could feel his master’s meditation was light. Biting his bottom lip as he stopped in front of the still figure, he reached his hand out to touch the man’s shoulder.

    “Master?” He stammered.

    “Sit down, Padawan,” Qui-Gon instructed without opening his eyes.

    A feeling of reassurance always filled Anakin when the man before him called him ‘Padawan’. He had been told he was not officially an apprentice until he passed his initiate’s tests, but being called Padawan anyway was an affirmation that Qui-Gon did not stand on that formality. This time was no exception.

    Obediently sitting in front of his Master, Anakin tried to mirror the seeming calmness of the elder’s manner. He knew he failed miserably, because he was too worried about his mother. He stared at the Jedi who had become like a father to him, and struggled to remain silent until the Master chose to speak. He was relieved when he did not have to wait long.

    “She’ll be alright.” Qui-Gon finally opened his eyes as he answered the un-asked query.

    As though a dam broke, more questions flooded from Anakin’s mouth. “What happened? Were you able to free her? What’s wrong with her? May I go see her, please?”

    The Jedi Master calmly answered each question one at a time. “I was able to purchase her from Watto, but I haven’t had a chance to officially release her from bondage. Apparently, Watto’s business is failing and some unwise gambling decisions made it so he was unable to regularly feed your mother. She has lost quite a bit of weight. I believe her weakened condition has lowered her resistance to illness. As we were making our way back to the ship, she fainted and I brought her here. The doctor is examining her now. When he is ready, we may go in to see her.”

    “Okay.” Anakin struggled to keep from crying. He was trying so hard to be a good Jedi and not give into his feelings. He wanted to make Qui-Gon and his mother proud. He sensed his Master reaching out to him through the Force, and his presence calmed him. Thank you, sir. The initiate hoped his gratitude and respect reached him.

    You’re welcome.

    A tear rolled down his cheek when he heard his Master’s voice in his head accompanied by a gentle warmth that seemed to enfold his whole being. Embarrassed, he quickly wiped the tear with his sleeve. He was surprised when Qui-Gon reached out to take his hand.

    “Never be embarrassed by honest emotion, Anakin.”

    “But, Jedi aren’t supposed to have emotion.”

    The man tilted his head as he raised an eyebrow. “Who told you that?”

    “Well... no one actually said that, but, Master Yoda taught me this one... what did he call it... monta or something, that I have to recite every day.”

    “Mantra,” Qui-gon corrected before closing his eyes and intoning, “Emotion, yet peace. Ignorance, yet knowledge. Passion, yet serenity. Chaos, yet harmony. Death, yet the Force.”

    Anakin frowned, “Um, that’s not quite it... I was told, ‘There is no emotion, there is peace. There is no ignorance, there is knowledge. There is no...” He stopped when the Master held up a finger.

    “The way I quoted it was how it was originally written,” Qui-Gon explained. “I never understood why it was changed because it makes no sense to me. Of course there is emotion. We are not to let it rule us, but we aren’t unfeeling droids. We are all ignorant of something until we seek for knowledge... or it is revealed to us some other way. Chaos... well life can get that way, and people do die as all lifeforms do.”

    “Then,” the initiate questioned hesitantly, “it is okay for me to tell you I love you?”

    Before Qui-Gon could react, a nurse who had exited the emergency room approached the two Jedi. “Are you the one who brought in Shmi Skywalker?”

    Both Master and Padawan rose to their feet. The elder answered, “I am.”

    “Doctor Keema wishes to speak with you.” When Anakin followed Qui-Gon, the nurse added, “You must stay here. Children under twelve aren’t allowed in the emergency room unless they’re a patient.”

    Putting a hand on the boy’s shoulder, Qui-gon spoke up, “This is Shmi’s son. He’s thirteen-years old.” When the woman looked at Anakin doubtfully, he explained while sweeping two raised fingers between them, “He’s small for his age.”

    “You’re small for your age,” she commented as though she had come up with the idea herself, then allowed him to go.

    Anakin stifled a giggle as he passed by the nurse.

    ~~~

    Qui-Gon stood quietly in the corner of the room as he watched Anakin tentatively take his mother’s hand.

    “Mom?” The boy’s voice quivered.

    The doctor had said Shmi would recover, but it would be a slow process. Her severe malnutrition had wrecked havoc on her immune system, and she had contracted not only one virus, but three. She would normally have been submerged into a bacta tank, but on an outer-rim planet such as Tatooine, such technology was hard to come by. Though this facility did have a tank, it had broken the week before and they were trying to find the parts necessary to fix it. So they affixed tubes and needles in the patient’s arms to deliver the needed the liquids, nutrients and medicines she required.

    “Mom,” Anakin repeated a little more steadily than the first time as he sandwiched her frail hand in both of his.

    Shmi’s eyelids fluttered for a few moments before she finally woke and looked at her son. “Ani,” she exclaimed as her eyes lit up. “It’s so good to see you. I missed you so much!”

    “I missed you too, mom.”

    The Jedi Master could hear the tears in his padawan’s voice, and felt his own throat tighten with emotion. He ignored his own stray tear that slowly made its way down his cheek.

    ~~~

    It was late, Shmi knew that much. She had come in and out of sleep several times during the day. Anakin had been by her side each time she woke except for once. The one time he was not, she found Qui-Gon in apparent meditation in the chair beside her bed. However, he opened his eyes as she studied him. She had blushed as she realized his dark azure eyes were watching her watch him.

    “Where’s Ani?”

    “I sent him to your home to pack your things and retrieve Seethreepio. He should be on his way back from taking them to the ship soon.”

    “Oh, that’s a good idea.”

    “So it’s okay I had him do that, then? I mean, you do wish to leave Tatooine?”

    “Yes, there’s nothing tying me here any more... thanks to you. Why did you do it?”

    “Do what?”

    “Why did you come back and free me?”

    “Anakin has been having trouble concentrating on his studies, and a big part of the problem is he was worried about you being stuck as a slave here on Tatooine. I’m hoping that now you’re free, he can direct his focus on his training unencumbered by guilt and apprehension.”


    Pulling her attention back to the present, she saw Qui-Gon standing beside her bed, but his attention was not on her, but on her son who was sitting in the chair the Jedi Master had occupied a few hours before. Anakin’s tiny hand was on top of hers, and he was sleeping with his head leaning on the side of her bed. She watched as the tall Jedi removed his cloak and placed it around the boy’s shoulders before carefully lifting him from the chair and carrying to the sofa which sat along the wall. The man leaned down and secured the cloak over Anakin to make sure he stayed warm. His huge hands gently brushed her son’s unruly bangs to the side.

    She smiled as she spoke softly, “You love him, don’t you?”

    Qui-Gon turned and walked over to the side of the bed and reached over to take one of her hands in his. His gentle grasp warmed her fingers. “I care for him a great deal. He’s an extraordinary boy.”

    “Because of his Force abilities?”

    Qui-Gon shook his head. “No, because of who he is.”

    “The Chosen One?” Anakin had mentioned the term to her when he told her how much pressure he felt to achieve, and that he feared he would let everyone down.

    Again, he shook his head as he replied, “Because he’s your son.”

    Taken aback by his answer, Shmi just stared into his deep blue eyes. Not for the first time, she noticed how handsome he was. Not holo-vid handsome, but in a way that was real. Though most of the time his face was frozen in a stoic mien, his eyes expressed more than she expected he knew. She blushed and looked away, but returned her attention to him when he began speaking once more.

    “Anakin’s willingness to help without thought for anything in return, his love of tinkering with and fixing things, and his genuine kindness are all traits he picked up from you... the way you raised him. It couldn’t have been easy raising a child in slavery, but you didn’t let the hardships make you bitter.” He smiled slightly before breaking eye contact by looking down at their clasped hands. He gently squeezed her fingers before releasing them. “You should go back to sleep,” he said softly. “The doctor said you may be able to leave in the morning.”

    Shmi chuckled. “I’ve been sleeping off and on all day. I want to hear more about how Ani is doing. Does he have any friends at the Jedi Temple?” When Qui-Gon remained silent and frowned, she became concerned. “He hasn’t been getting into fights has he?”

    “Oh, no. Nothing like that. It’s just that he’s been having trouble relating to the other initiates his age. Partly because it got out that he is the Chosen One -- it sets him apart. Also, because he wasn’t raised in the Temple with the other initiates, he is an outsider. It’s not that the other initiates shun him, but there is a kind of barrier... a fence if you will... they will talk to him, but there is a line neither Anakin or they cross. He seems to get along better with adults. He and my former Padawan, Obi-Wan, often talk together when he isn’t on a mission, and my friend Sian never passes up a chance to corrupt the boy.” He said the last with an amused gleam in his eye.

    “Who is this, Sian?”

    “He’s a fellow Master whose views on the way of the Jedi are a bit unorthodox. He’s a good man, and helped through a very rough time in my life.” A hint of sorrow shaded Qui-Gon’s eyes for a moment, but quickly passed when he added, “He has a way of making Anakin laugh when he’s feeling down, and he looks after the boy when I’m away on a mission.”

    “So Ani doesn’t go on missions yet?”

    “He isn’t allowed until he passes initiate training.”

    Though she could feel sleep tugging at her awareness, she stifled a yawn as she asked, “Has he gotten into a lot of mischief? I know he was used to roaming freely through Mos Espa while when Watto let him off from work. I’m sure life at the Temple is more restrictive.”

    A smile played at the corner of the Jedi Masters lips. “I wouldn’t say a whole lot, but, he’s been known to take unauthorized excursions now and then... especially in the first six months.” He reached out to gently remove a stray hair from her face. “He fights sleep almost as much as you’re doing now.”

    Shmi laughed softly as she let a persistent yawn escape. “Okay, I give,” she said as her heavy eyelids slowly began to close. “Good night, Qui-Gon.”

    “Sleep well, Shmi.”
    Last edited by Alexis_Wingstar, Dec 18, 2012
  8. Nyota's Heart Fanfic Edited Winner / Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host Game Winner
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Awwwwww! :D :D I love the original code so much better. More realistic and balanced. =D= Anakin with Qui-Gon and Qui with Shmi -- yum! Looking forward to more. :) @};-
  9. earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    lovely AU and a great read.
    nice to see Shmi
  10. Alexis_Wingstar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2006
    star 4
    @Jade_eyes @earlybird-obi-wan Sorry, not much of Qui-Gon or Shmi in this post. Anakin sees a little action in this one and gets to show off his instinctive use of the Force.

    Chapter 3
    Excursion

    Anakin was disappointed when he was told by his mother that she had to stay in the hospital for another day or two. “Possibly three.”

    “But why? You look better.” Through the Force, he could tell she was stronger.

    “Doctor Rahj said that my immune system isn’t working yet, and he’d feel more comfortable releasing me when my body shows signs it is.”

    The boy nodded in approval. “That sounds reasonable.”

    Qui-Gon came over as Shmi smiled fondly at her son. “That will give you more time to catch up on the lessons your teachers sent with you,” the Jedi Master said as he put a hand on Anakin’s one of shoulders.

    Sighing, he replied, “I suppose so. The data chips are on the ship though.”

    “Well, you know the way there.”

    “You just want to get rid of me so you can talk to my mom alone, right?” When he was met with his Master’s typical stone-faced expression, he rolled his eyes. “Okay, I’ll get going, sir.”

    ~~~

    As he walked down the streets, Anakin heard a commotion around the corner ahead of him. He rushed to see what was going on and saw a Gotal thug slamming Vek Drow against the wall of his shop. The Ishi Tib merchant slid down the wall, a streak of red smearing the stucco and slumped on the sandy ground. As the muscular alien ran towards the street Anakin had turned off of, the boy stepped in front of him.

    “Out of my way, Tiny!” The Gotal growled.

    Without a word, Anakin reached out a hand, and using the Force, pushed the menacing ruffian’s legs out from under him. He vaguely noticed Vek Drow’s wife come out of the shop to aid her husband, heard her screaming to stop the thief.

    “Woah! Umph!” The villain’s greyish-brown face landed in the sand by the tip of the Jedi Initiate’s boots. With a moan, he pushed himself up and glared at the boy. Snarling, he launched himself from a squatting position towards him, his horns threatening to gore the child.

    Anakin was too quick for him. Sidestepping the lunge, he again raised his hands, and the Gotal floated in the air, mid jump. “I suggest you drop what you stole.”

    “What’s it to you, punk?”

    “Nothing, really. I just don’t like bullies.”

    “Let me down!”

    “Okay.” Anakin proceeded to wave one arm down then up several times. The Gotal’s body mirrored the boy’s actions, slamming into Mos Espa’s sandy street.

    After the fifth time, the thug screamed, “Stop! Please! Stop!” He slammed into the ground once more before he dropped the stolen item. “There, I dropped it, please stop!”

    Anakin stopped making the Gotal smack into the ground, but still held him mid-air. “Why shouldn’t I slam you against a building like you did Vek?”

    “Please, I’m sorry! Let me go.”

    “When I let you go, you will help Vek’s wife take him to the hospital, understand?”

    “Yes, yes, I’ll do it!”

    “Promise?”

    “Yes,” the thief squealed, “I promise!”

    Anakin lowered his arm, and this time it was Tatooine’s gravity that made the Gotal unceremoniously dropped to the ground. When the crook tried to take off without helping, the young Jedi once more grabbed him using the Force. This time, he swung the thug around then made him soar towards the wall of one of the buildings.

    The Gotal screamed in sheer terror.

    Then he stopped with his nose a quarter of a centimeter from the stuccoed bricks.

    “Now do what you promised, or else I won’t be so nice!”

    “Okay,” the Gotal stammered after being let down unto his feet. His gait was unsteady at first when he walked towards the shopkeepers.

    Anakin watched as the thug picked up the merchant and began carrying him. The wife yelled instructions to someone within the shop before rushing to keep up. As they passed the Jedi, the boy said, “If I hear you abandoned Vek before taking him into the hospital, I will hunt you down.”

    “Don’t worry, I won’t,” stammered the Gotal.

    He watched the three go around the corner. The female Ishi Tib looked back at him and said, “Thank you!” Anakin only nodded to her in acknowledgement before she turned and followed the Gotal.

    “Isn’t that the slave kid who beat Sebulba in the Boota Eve Classic two years ago?”

    “It couldn’t be, he left Tatooine after that.”

    Anakin looked around and blushed slightly when he noticed a crowd of people gathering around and staring at him. “There’s nothing to see here,” he said in a nonchalant manner while waving them away, “go about your business.”

    “Eh, there’s nothing to see here. Come on, we’ve got things to do.”

    Anakin was amazed as the crowd dispersed. He had not meant to use the Force to make them obey him. He gulped as he resumed his journey to the shipyards. Remembering that he was told to keep the fact that he was a Jedi low-key, he thought, I hope Qui-Gon doesn’t hear about this, he’ll skin me for sure! Though he knew that would never really happen. The Jedi Master had never raised a hand to him. Whenever he had done something that displeased the man and saw that look -- the thinned lips and the disappointment in those keen eyes -- he could not help but feel being yelled at or beaten would be much preferable.

    ~~~

    It was just after noon when Anakin had finished several assignments. The only two things he had left to do was an essay on the impact of some long-dead civilization on the Galactic Republic, which he was in no mood to do at that moment, and an interview he was supposed to do with Qui-Gon on philosophy. I wonder if that discussion about the mantra counts? Shrugging, he placed his work back into his pack. As he did so, his fingers brushed by a pouch he had taken with him.

    Within it was a mostly-finished lightsaber.

    All that he needed to do to complete it was the crystal. Without any prompting from his Master or other instructors, he had looked up the blueprints of the Jedi’s weapon within the first week he came to the Temple. In many of the “unauthorized excursions” his Master had mentioned to Shmi while he was asleep he had been scavenging for parts in various junkyards.

    I’ll find the crystal soon, he thought with a certainty he could not explain.

    After closing the pack, he turned to leave the ship. He was just passing the shop of the merchant who he had helped that morning on his route back to the hospital when he heard a gravelly voice shout, “Hey, you!”

    Anakin stopped his casual pace and turned to see Vek approaching him. The green-skinned Ishi Tib had a bandage around his head. He saw the merchant’s wife standing in the doorway behind him.

    “You’re the kid who stopped that thief, aren’t you?”

    “Yes,” he confirmed.

    “I want to thank you. I don’t know how you did what you did, but thanks.”

    “It was nothing, really, but you’re welcome.” The boy turned to go, but the shopkeeper stopped him with a hand on his shoulder.

    “Is there anything I can give you? That was an expensive piece of equipment that thug was trying to take off with.”

    Anakin shrugged. “That won’t be necessary.”

    “Please, I owe you, and I never let my debts go unpaid.”

    The boy was about to say that the merchant owed him nothing since he had stopped the thief of his own free will, but then a thought stopped him: The hospital needs parts to fix that bacta tank. “You don’t happen to have a infractor coil and a dual-phased oscillator, do you?” He knew what it needed because he had looked at the bacta tank the previous day before he went to get the things from the slave hovel he had grown up in. He had wanted to see if he could possibly repair it so his mom could get the care she needed.

    The Ishi Tib rubbed the back of his neck as he spoke, “I might. Come in and I’ll check my inventory.” The merchant turned and walked into his shop. “What do you need it for?” After being told about the hospital’s need, the shopkeeper looked at Anakin. “You aren’t asking for anything for yourself?” He looked back at his datapad as he added, “You’re a strange boy.”

    “I’ve been accused of that many times,” Anakin grinned, “I don’t let that bother me much.”

    Chuckling, Vek shook his head. “I like you, kid. Here they are,” he crowed in triumph as he tapped the datapad’s screen. I have both the oscillator and coil you mentioned, though they came from a racing pod instead of a bacta tank. Octa,” he called out, and an eight-armed droid ambled over to him. “Go get these for the lad.”

    “Yes, sir,” the droid’s responded in a high-pitched mechanical voice.

    Fifteen minutes later, he snuck into the room that held the bacta tank and proceeded to make the needed repairs. He was just tightening the last bolt when he heard the door to the room open and he sensed danger.
    Last edited by Alexis_Wingstar, Dec 18, 2012
  11. earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    OOOF Anakin in all sorts of trouble again just trying to help.
    Nice read
  12. Anime_Jedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 12, 2007
    star 3
    Just found this today, its very good. I like this Anakin a lot more then the one we got. Also the way you wrote Jedi Code was awesome!

    I might have to use that in story with your permission of course.

    Everyone is written very well in character, its just all around an enjoyable read.

    I'll be looking foreword to the next chapter, thanks for sharing it with us.:)
  13. Zer0 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 2012
    star 3
    Fantastic story so far, I'm really enjoying it, keep up the good work.
  14. Nyota's Heart Fanfic Edited Winner / Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host Game Winner
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
  15. Alexis_Wingstar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2006
    star 4
    Thanks goes to Valairy Scot for betaing this chapter. [:D]

    @earlybird-obi-wan Thank you, and yeah, poor Anakin can't seem to avoid trouble... guess it's his middle name [face_laugh]

    @Anime_Jedi Actually, the other version of the code was not written by me (see link), so no need to credit me.

    @Zer0 Thank you :)

    @Jade_eyes Oops indeed.

    Chapter 4
    Stirrings

    Qui-Gon allowed a smile to play across his features as Anakin left the room. It faded however, when he glanced over at Shmi. Her eyes danced with mirth while she also watched her son leave. He had been thinking that perhaps it would be a good thing if she did not live too close to the Jedi Temple. Better yet, that she does not reside on Coruscant. He was concerned that close proximity would make Anakin’s attachment to her stronger, which would undermine his purpose for freeing the woman in the first place. He was loathe, however, to bring up his reservations. She was free now to dwell wherever she wished. I have no right to tell her where or where not to call home. Wherever she chooses, we’ll deal with it.

    “What’s wrong, Qui-Gon?” Shmi was looking up at the Jedi with her head tilted to one side.

    Shaking his head, he answered, “Nothing is wrong. I was just wondering if you’ve given thought to where you wish to live.”

    Taking a deep breath, she broke eye contact with her companion. “Yes, I have. I’m not quite sure where I want to go. I,” she hesitated for a moment before continuing, “I think it best I don’t live on Coruscant, though.” She looked up at Qui-Gon as she explained, “I don’t wish to have my presence be a distraction to Anakin’s training. You said he’s already having trouble relating to the other children there. Me being around can only cause more trouble for him.”

    Sensing how much pain the insight caused her, he reached over to gently squeeze her hand. Qui-Gon admired her wisdom and total unselfishness. He knew how much she loved her son -- how she longed to be with him and watch him grow. Yet it was her great love for Anakin that allowed her to let him go, not only once, but twice. “Is there anything I can do to make this easier for you?”

    He could sense her gratitude before she spoke. She squeezed his fingers as she favored him with an appreciative smile. “You are already doing it by being so kind.” When her thumb gently stroked the side of his hand, he slowly pulled it away.

    “Would you like to go for a stroll with me?” Her doctor had mentioned earlier that she could take short walks down the hallway so long as she was accompanied by another adult.

    “Yes, I would like that.”

    Qui-Gon helped her lower the rail at the side of the bed then helped her put on the robe the hospital had provided for her. He then proffered his elbow when she had risen from the bed. The tall man smiled down at Shmi after she took his arm. They left the room and walked at a slow pace down the hallway. They were just passing the nurse’s desk when the Jedi Master stopped short.

    “What’s wrong?” When he was slow to answer, Shmi asked, “Is it Anakin? Is he in danger?” She squeezed his arm. “Qui-Gon, please!”

    The Jedi looked down at her as though he was coming out of a dream. “He’s fine.” He resumed walking at the same measured pace as before. What have you done, Padawan? He had felt a surge in the Force which had the boy’s signature presence written all over it. He made a mental note to ask the youth about his activities when he returned from his studies.

    “Was it Anakin?”

    Qui-Gon looked at Shmi with an expression that said, “What are you talking about?”

    “Don’t look at me like that. You had this look like you were seeing or sensing something of concern happening someplace else. Was it Anakin?”

    The Jedi’s lips thinned in consternation. “Yes, but he’s fine.”

    Sighing, she lowered her eyes, “Okay, you don’t have to tell me. I guess I lost my right to know what is going on with my son when I released him to you.”

    He stopped again, this time turning to his companion. Putting his fingers under her chin, Qui-Gon gently lifted it so their eyes met. “Shmi, I...”

    She backed away from him as she interrupted, “Don’t... I know I have to let go. It’s just hard to do this again.” When he reached out to her, she pulled back further. “Please, I need to be alone!”

    As she was turning away from him, Qui-Gon could see tears starting to roll down her cheeks. He watched as she walked swiftly away from him. “Shmi,” he called to her, “you’re going the wrong way.”

    She stopped, turned back towards him, then fell to her knees, weeping. He was kneeling in front of her in an instant. “Shmi, I’m sorry,” he whispered as he pulled her to him. He put his arms around her small frame as she buried her face on his shoulder. Rocking her back and forth, he ran his fingers through her hair. When she apologized for making such a scene, he brushed his lips against her ear as he murmured, “Sh, it’s okay.”

    Once her tears abated and she pulled away to look up at him, Qui-Gon tenderly brushed the lingering wetness from her cheeks. “You were crying too!” She reached up and ran her thin fingers across his face.

    Gently clasping her hand, he kissed her palm. He then swallowed as he looked deeply into her eyes.

    What am I doing?

    His lips were a mere centimeter from hers, and he could feel her warm breath softly tickle his skin. He cleared his throat and pulled away.

    Blushing, Shmi also cleared her throat before saying, “I guess we’d better get up off the floor.”

    A smile played upon his lips as he nodded. He rose from the floor before helping her to her feet. “Do you wish to return to your room?”

    Shaking her head, she looked demurely up at him. “If you don’t mind, I’d like to walk with you some more.”

    Qui-Gon bowed his head slightly as he once more proffered his arm and she took it. “I would enjoy that.”

    ~~~

    Shmi could not keep her eyes from wandering up to study Qui-Gon’s face as they strolled in silence. Was he really about to kiss me back there? The mere thought of it made her feel warm and light-headed. She could not deny her attraction to him. He couldn’t possibly find a scrawny slave woman like me attractive. Still... She looked down at her feet as she said softly, “I like being with you, even though it can’t last.”

    The Jedi placed his hand on top of hers and gently squeezed in answer. She could feel her pulse quicken at his touch. Can he tell how I feel? Glancing up at him, Shmi took a quick breath in when she saw he was looking down at her. It was only for a moment, then he swallowed and turned his head so that his gaze was steadfastly on the route they were taking. He’s a Jedi, so even if he is attracted to me, he won’t act on it. It’s for the best. He is the only one I know I can trust my son with. I know he loves Anakin and will do what is best for him.

    They went through a set of double doors into a room that seemed as though it were a whole other place than a sterile hospital. A garden of desert plants native to Tatooine; flowers, cacti and trees, were growing in a large circular room. Sandstone tiles made paths through the wondrous oasis which was lit by sunshine coming down through a transparisteel ceiling. Ornate benches dotted the sides of the paths. Shmi could see a fountain in the middle of the garden. Without speaking, she and Qui-Gon headed toward the center.

    Once they stopped in front of the fountain, Shmi pulled away from her companion. She slowly circled the fountain as she looked all around and took in the scents of the flowers. Coming to a halt once she reached Qui-Gon who had silently watched her the entire time, she whispered in awe, “It’s so beautiful here.”

    Suddenly feeling light-headed, she reached out for Qui-Gon who was already reaching out to steady her. He guided her to the nearest bench to sit down.

    “Are you okay?”

    She put a hand to her forehead as she answered, “I... I think so. I just feel tired all of a sudden.” Shmi leaned towards her companion and laid her head on his shoulder.

    “Rest then,” he said softly as he put his arm around her shoulders.

    The aroma of the flowers mingled with Qui-Gon’s scent made her feel warm and safe as she drifted off to sleep.

    She was in a field of golden and lavender flowers. On a hillside, strange looking creatures fed on the grass and flowers. Qui-Gon was beside her, but was garbed in a shepherd’s clothing and held a long staff with a hook on one end. He was holding her hand, and as she looked down, she saw a ring on her fourth finger... a wedding band matched by one he was wearing on one of his fingers. As she looked up at him, he leaned down to kiss her on the lips.

    “Qui-Gon Jinn, please come to the security office!”

    Shmi was jarred awake by the announcement over the hospital’s intercom. She sat up straight and looked around in confusion.

    “It’s okay,” Qui-Gon’s soft deep voice drew her attention to him as he put a hand on top of her fingers.

    “Qui-Gon Jinn, please come to the security office,” the same voice as before repeated over the intercom.

    “I must go, will you be alright?”

    Though still feeling muddled, she nodded.

    “I’ll send someone for you,” the Jedi said as he rose from the bench.

    Shmi watched as he quickly walked down the path to the double doors through which they had entered the garden.

    “Anakin,” she thought aloud, “what have you done now?”
    Last edited by Alexis_Wingstar, Dec 18, 2012
  16. Nyota's Heart Fanfic Edited Winner / Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host Game Winner
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Oh, dear, I think Anakin's about to ... get a lecture at least ;) :p The Qui-Gon/Shmi "Stirrings" -- SQUEEEEEEEEE! Delightful. :) :D I do not think I've read a full-length fic (more than a one shot) dealing with the possibility of this pairing. But I love it, Alexis.
    Last edited by Jade_eyes, Oct 15, 2012
  17. earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    Love Qui-Gon and Shmi together, they should bond and raise Anakin together. Maybe that will get that boy out of trouble
    Jade_eyes likes this.
  18. Valairy Scot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    You think that would work, earlybird? Personally, I'm not sure anything would keep that boy out of trouble - still, that twosome might diminish the extent of the trouble.
    Jade_eyes likes this.
  19. Zer0 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 2012
    star 3
    Silly Anakin, always getting into trouble. First time I've ever seen such a pairing, I'm beginning to like it.

    The lack of Obi-Wan makes me sad though.
  20. Alexis_Wingstar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2006
    star 4
    I'm glad I could make you "Sqeee"

    Yeah, that might work for a day or two... but I don't think Anakin's adventurous spirit could stay out of trouble for very long.

    You hit the nail on the head there, Valairy.

    Obi-Wan will make an appearance sometime in the future, I promise.
    ~~~

    Chapter 5
    Releasing

    As Qui-Gon entered the security office, he spotted Anakin sitting forlornly on a bench, head bowed down. He knew his Padawan could sense him come in, but the boy did not look up at him. The Master Jedi noted the tightened fists which sat in the youth’s lap, and frowned. He could sense anger, frustration and sorrow crash through their bond like a raging river.

    “Are you Qui-Gon Jinn,” a security droid inquired.

    Without taking his eyes off Anakin, he replied, “Yes, I am.”

    “We caught your slave tampering with vital hospital equipment.”

    “I told you, I was fixing the bacta tank, you stupid...” The young Jedi abruptly stood as he shouted at the droid, but stopped when Qui-Gon placed a hand on his shoulder. The boy was breathing rapidly as tears streamed down his cheeks.

    Looking over at the droid, Qui-Gon stated calmly, “There has been a misunderstanding. This lad is not my slave.”

    “He told us you were his master.”

    “That is correct, but he is my apprentice not my slave.”

    “Still, you are responsible for the boy’s act of sabotage.”

    Qui-Gon could feel Anakin stiffen, and he gently squeezed the boy’s shoulder. “If he says he was fixing it, that was what he was doing.”

    “I had just finished the repairs when you came in,” Anakin said in a calmer tone, though there was more than a hint of resentment in it.

    “There were no repairs scheduled for today, and only authorized personnel are allowed in the bacta room, so your apprentice was trespassing as well tampering with essential hospital equipment.”

    “Has anyone tested the bacta tank to see if it works, yet,” Qui-Gon asked.

    “No.”

    “Then why don’t you do so,” he suggested.

    “I am not programmed in that area.”

    “Then get someone who is authorized to run the bacta tanks to check into it before you accuse my apprentice of sabotage.”

    “I am not authorized to assign tasks to hospital personnel.”

    Annoyance rose within Qui-Gon, and he took a deep breath then slowly released it along with the emotion. “Please let me speak to the head of security.”

    “He has already been contacted and should be here soon.”

    “Good, then there is no need to carry on this conversation until he gets here.” With that, Qui-Gon turned his back on the droid and went to sit on the bench. He gazed over at Anakin who remained standing. “Sit, Padawan,” he instructed quietly.

    He watched as the boy sullenly avoided eye contact as he sat next to him. He’s been a slave since birth. It’s left a deep wound that’s been re-opened by that damned unfeeling droid. As Qui-Gon placed a hand on his shoulder, he hoped Anakin was open enough to sense what was in his heart.

    ~~~

    Anakin could not bring himself to look at Master Jinn as he sat next to him. He tried to close himself off to the bond he had with the older Jedi. He did not wish anyone to see the agony he was feeling. I was born a slave. Even though he freed me, I’ll always BE a slave!

    He felt his Master’s hand on his shoulder. Though he did not wish to, Anakin slowly looked up at him. As their eyes met, he could feel the man’s concern for him. More than that, he sensed love.

    Pain stabbed at his chest as he tried to pull away. I can’t... I don’t deserve it.

    “Anakin, please don’t close me out.”

    The padawan shrugged the master’s hand off his shoulder and quickly rose from the bench.

    Ani, my son, look at me!

    The boy looked in surprise at Qui-Gon. Never before had his master called him by his nickname. More than that, the term son shocked him. “You...” He paused as his voice broke. “You aren’t my father.”

    “Not biologically,” the man said as he reached out to take both of Anakin’s hands, “but in my heart, I am.”

    “E-even though,” the boy stammered as his efforts to not cry started to waiver, “I-i’m a-al-always in t-trouble?”

    Qui-Gon smiled gently as he let go of one of his hands and reached up to cup his cheek, but said nothing. That is when Anakin saw a tear on his master’s cheek. All vestiges of holding back his own tears crumbled and the youth wrapped his arms around the older Jedi’s neck. He allowed the man to scoop him into his lap as sobs wracked his small frame.

    “What’s going on here?”

    Anakin pulled back in surprise to see a man in a uniform standing just inside the door to the security office. The security guard was even taller and heavier set than his master, and darkly tanned with short-cropped, wavy black hair. His thick lips were pulled back in a fierce scowl as he glared at the droid.

    “This boy was caught in the bacta room without authorization, and was tampering...”

    “Fixing!”

    “... with one of the tanks,” the droid finished as though Anakin had not spoken.

    Turning to look at Qui-Gon and the boy, the guard he introduced himself, “I’m Jerren Wyrren, chief of security.”

    Both of the Jedi stood, and the younger wiped his tears on his sleeve as the elder placed a hand on his shoulder. “I’m Qui-Gon Jinn, and this is my apprentice, Anakin.”

    The guard turned his dark eyes to the child. “Were you harmed?”

    “No, sir.”

    Jerren gave a heavy sigh. “Good. Sometimes these droids can be a bit too rough. So, you were caught in the bacta room?”

    “He may have been trespassing,” Qui-Gon spoke for the boy, “but he was repairing the bacta tank, not sabotaging as your droid accused.”

    “I wasn’t informed of any repair work being planned for today,” the guard said as he went to sit behind a desk. “Please sit over here.” He indicated two seats across the desk from him.

    “Um,” Anakin spoke as he sat beside Qui-Gon, “there wasn’t any work planned, because the parts weren’t here for the broken bacta tank. I... um... found the needed parts and...” He could see his master raise an eyebrow from the corner of his eye, but rushed on to say, “I thought since other patients besides my mom probably need it, I would go ahead and do the repairs myself. I didn’t think it would be a big deal.”

    “Let me get this straight. You took it upon yourself to go into a room that is clearly marked ‘For Authorized Personnel Only’ and thought it was ‘no big deal.’”

    Anakin lowered his eyes to the hands folded in his lap. Looking back on it, he realized how foolish he had been. “I’m sorry.”

    “Did you really fix the tank?”

    With a sorrowful frown, the boy looked up at the security officer. “Yes, sir.”

    The officer glanced over at Qui-Gon with a raised eyebrow.

    “He may be young, but his mechanical ability is beyond excellent. If he says he fixed the bacta tank, rest assured, it is fixed.”

    “I’ll have to verify that, but If what you say is true, I don’t see why we can’t overlook the trespassing.”

    Qui-Gon tilted his head forward slightly. “Thank you.”

    Tapping a button on the comm panel located on his desk. “Hospital tech department, please.” He spoke briefly to someone then folded his hands on the desk. “Now we wait,” he said matter of factly. He turned his attention to Anakin. “You said your mother is a patient here?”

    “Yes, sir.”

    “What’s her name, may I ask?”

    Anakin glanced over at Qui-Gon who nodded to the boy. “Shmi Skywalker.”

    “Skywalker?” A look of recognition crossed the security guard’s countenance. At the youth’s nod, he asked in confirmation, “A rather frail looking woman about forty-years-old with dark hair and brown eyes?”

    Anakin’s chest tightened with dread. “Why, what’s wrong?”

    “I’m sure she’s alright,” the man assured him.

    The boy stood up and pressed his hands against the top of the desk. “What happened to her?” He sensed Qui-Gon reaching out to him in the Force to calm him.

    “I saw a doctor and a couple nurses walking down the hallway with a patient on a stretcher. The doctor called her Mrs. Skywalker.”

    Anakin could hardly breath as he turned with a panicked expression towards his master. Qui-Gon took a hold of Anakin’s hand as he spoke, “If the doctor is with her, I’m sure they are doing what they can to help her.” She’ll be okay, Anakin, his mentor’s voice in his head reassured him.

    As the boy sat back down, Jerren mirrored what Master Jinn had said, “The doctors here are very good at what they do. Your mother is in good hands.”

    Taking a deep breath and slowly releasing it, Anakin nodded. “Thank you, sir.”

    “So, Mr. Jinn, what line of work are you and your apprentice in?”

    “We build and repair pod-racers.”

    Anakin listened quietly as the two men spoke. He was grateful for the change in subject.

    “For what company?”

    “You probably never heard of it. I started it with my life savings a couple years ago, and now we’re here on Tatooine to try to interest some racers in our pods before the Boonta Eve Classic.”

    The comm unit on Jerren’s desk beeped, and the security chief quickly tapped it. “Wyrren, here.”

    “Shirg, here. We just checked the tank, and it appears it only needs to be filled with bacta!”

    “Thank you, Shirg.” He smiled over at the two Jedi. “Well, your story checks out. You’re free to go.”

    As both Anakin and Qui-Gon stood, Jerren rose as well. “I trust there will be no more sneaking into restricted areas.”

    “No, sir!”

    “I hope your mother will be alright.”

    “Thank you.”

    Just before the two Jedi went through the door, the security chief said, “May the Force be with you, Master Jinn.”

    Anakin looked back even as Qui-Gon turned, and saw a knowing look on the guard’s face. Qui-Gon bowed slightly as he replied, “And with you, Jerren.”

    They were out in the hall when Anakin asked, “How did he know?” He sensed amusement through their bond as they walked down the hallway.

    “He caught a glimpse of my lightsaber when I got up from the bench.”

    “So he knew all along?”

    Qui-Gon chuckled quietly as Anakin briefly glanced back towards the security office.

    “How did you acquire the parts to fix the bacta tank?”

    The boy looked up at his master and swallowed nervously. “Someone gave them to me.”

    Master Jinn raised an eyebrow. “Someone just handed you the parts out of the blue?”

    Anakin blushed and looked down at his feet as they continued walking. “No, sir.”

    “What happened this morning, my Padawan?”

    “While I was heading to the ship, I saw a shopkeeper get attacked by a thief. I stopped the thief. When I was coming back to the hospital, the shopkeeper wanted to give me something for helping him.” He looked up at Qui-Gon as he continued, “I know we aren’t supposed to take anything for helping people, but, he insisted, and I thought that since there were many patients here that could be helped if I could bring back those parts, well, I asked if he had them. I... I’m sorry, I know it was wrong.”

    “There is no reason to apologize Anakin. What you did in that circumstance was right. You didn’t ask the shopkeeper for anything for your own gain. How did you know what parts were needed?”

    “I... um... went into the bacta room yesterday before going to get my mom’s things.”

    “So, you trespassed twice.”

    The boy gnawed on his bottom lip. “Yes, sir.”

    “Anakin, just because we’re Jedi does not excuse breaking the rules. There are better ways to find out the information you needed. I want you to reflect on your actions and think of what you could have done differently.”

    “Yes, sir.” The boy let out a desolate sigh. When Qui-Gon put his arm around his shoulders, however, he felt less dispirited.

    “Your heart is in the right place, it’s just your execution that is faulty.”

    They walked in silence for a couple minutes before Qui-Gon asked, “What were you feeling when you used the Force to stop the thief?”

    “How did you know I used the Force, Master?”

    “When you use the Force, it’s like you’re throwing a boulder into a pond. You need to learn to dampen your signature. Now, answer my question, please.”

    Anakin thought about it. “Well, I was angry when I saw the thief attack the shopkeeper, but I used the techniques you and Master Yoda taught me to release it. I felt... I guess calm but determined is the way to describe it.”

    Looking up at Qui-Gon, the boy could sense his approval even before the Master Jedi nodded and said, “Good.”

    “Um, something kind of weird happened after that... a crowd was gathering, and a few of them recognized me, and I just told them that there was nothing going on and to go about their business... and they just left... but I didn’t use that mind trick. At least I didn’t mean to.”

    “Sometimes a young Jedi, after using the Force in a confrontation, it can have a residual effect on actions right after that. It’s because of an adrenaline rush. Once you learn more control, that will no longer happen.”

    “Wow, there sure is a lot to learn, isn’t there?”

    Qui-Gon smiled. “We never stop learning, Anakin.” The elder Jedi peered down at the padawan. “Are you hungry?”

    Before he could say anything, the lad’s stomach loudly growled.

    Chuckling Qui-Gon said, “Come, let’s go somewhere for lunch.”

    “But, I want to see if my mom is okay.”

    “The doctor is still with her.”

    “Oh.” He frowned, wondering how his master knew for certain.

    Qui-Gon gently squeezed his shoulder. “Let’s go eat.”
    Last edited by Alexis_Wingstar, Dec 18, 2012
    Jade_eyes, Zer0 and earlybird-obi-wan like this.
  21. earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    Nice to see this turn the right way for Anakin. A lesson and sweet moments
    Jade_eyes likes this.
  22. Valairy Scot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    Oh, well handled by the security guard AND Qui-Gon. Well done indeed.
    Jade_eyes likes this.
  23. Anime_Jedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 12, 2007
    star 3
    Not bad when I saw episode one, I always thought there was a small hit of Qui-Gon and Shmi.

    Or that it could at least work, Shmi being around up to episode two and maybe three.

    Even if she isn't in his life everyday, her being alive will change Anakain in some way, I would like to think for the better.
    Jade_eyes likes this.
  24. Nyota's Heart Fanfic Edited Winner / Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host Game Winner
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Sweet d'awwwww! moments. :D :)
    I really liked how the security guard handled matters.

    I'm very heartened by Anakin's underlying motives and even though he's impetuous, there's no taint of negative emotions behind it all. [face_thinking]

    [:D]
  25. Alexis_Wingstar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2006
    star 4
    Yes, he still has a lot of healing in his soul to do, but getting the pain and anger of a life of slavery out in the open instead of buried deep inside is a good start.

    Thank you.

    Yeah, every time I watch the scenes where Qui-Gon and Shmi are in together, there always seemed to be a connection. Even in the dining scene.

    I always believed that Anakin was basically a good kid. He understandably had some anger and fear issues, but on the whole he was good. The insidious influence of Palpatine... preying on those issues and stroking the boy's ego... that turned Anakin to the dark side.

    Now for chapter 7:

    ~~~~

    Chapter 6
    Letting Go


    Shmi frowned when she opened her eyes. Where am I, she wondered. The last thing she remembered was getting up from the bench in the garden after Qui-Gon had left. She had become dizzy. She recalled starting to sit back down, and then waking up here. She looked around to see she was in her hospital room. She sensed a presence, and before she turned her head in that direction, she knew it was her Jedi companion. He was sitting cross legged with his back to the couch on which her son lay sleeping.

    Qui-Gon opened his eyes and looked over at her.

    “Hi,” she greeted him then cleared her throat when she heard how hoarse her voice sounded. He stood, and as he walked over to her, she wondered, “Why are you sitting on the floor instead of the chair?”

    “Because the arms of the chair are too narrow to accommodate the way I prefer to sit while meditating.” Qui-Gon picked up a glass and pitcher from the table near the head of her bed and began pouring water. He handed her the glass which she thankfully accepted.





    “How did I get here,” she asked once she had sated her thirst.

    “You fainted after I left you in the garden. You’d developed a fever which the doctor says is a good sign your immune system is finally asserting itself.”

    She rubbed the side of her forehead, and frowned. “I must have hit my head, because it hurts.”

    “Thankfully it is only a bruise, not a concussion. I’m sorry, I should have walked you to your room before going to the security office.”

    Shmi reached out to take the Jedi’s hand. “No, you can’t take care of us both. Anakin is your first responsibility.” She squeezed gently as she added, “I’m okay. Please don’t worry about me.” Even as she said it, she felt a deep loneliness well up inside. The soft touch of his fingers caressing the back of her knuckles sent waves of pleasure through her. She swallowed when she met his intense gaze and he saw in those dark blue eyes not only concern, but affection as well. Can it be? She dismissed that thought and decided to switch the focus on her son. “So, what did Anakin do that you needed to go to the security office?”

    “He broke into the bacta room.”

    “What?”

    Qui-Gon smiled. “He was caught just as he finished fixing that broken tank.”

    “But... but how did he fix it? They said they couldn’t get the parts for at least a week.”

    “He acquired the parts this morning. A local merchant whom he helped donated the parts needed.”

    She sensed there was much more to the story, but decided not to push for details because she was still feeling really weak. There will be much that happens in my son’s life from now on that I won’t know about. I need to let this go.

    “Are you okay?”

    Shmi thought she sensed a warmth from the Jedi that was more than mere concern. She longed to have him hold her as he did earlier that day. No, I need to let that go as well. Love between us can only lead to more pain when he leaves me again, taking Ani with him... that is if it is really love he feels... I’m probably just putting my own feelings onto him... but how do I know this is love... I hardly know this man. How can I trust what I feel when I’m not sure if it’s true. She took a deep breath to steel herself for what she was about to say.

    “Qui-Gon, I think you and Anakin should stay somewhere else until I’m released from the hospital. You can come to visit every day, but... I need some privacy.” She blushed as she looked away from him. “I’m sorry.”

    “There’s no need to apologize. Yours is s reasonable request. Do you wish us to leave now, or shall we wait until morning?”

    Glancing over to where the small form of her son slept before looking up at the Jedi once more, she said, “There’s no need to wake Anakin. It can wait ‘til morning.” She smiled up at Qui-Gon and squeezed his hand. “Thanks for understanding.”

    A breath caught in her throat as he leaned over to kiss her forehead. “Go back to sleep now, Shmi,” he whispered.

    She was grateful he kept a hold of her hand as he lowered himself into the chair beside her bed. He closed his eyes as though taking his own advice and she felt her own eyelids get heavy. Their hands were still clasped as she drifted off to sleep.

    [EDIT: Because I forgot to paste the chapter! 8-}]
    Last edited by Alexis_Wingstar, Dec 18, 2012
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