Title: The Portal Author: VaderLVR64 Characters: Qui-Gon Jinn, OCs, Anakin Summary: It was a dark and stormy night in the cantina? Notes: You chose: Ghostie Qui Wookie Bakura Your challenge is to write a Tragic story featuring a barmaid/Cantina keeper and Medicated Jedi Masters. I did not quite meet the guidelines as I had no idea how to medicate a dead Jedi Master. But this is what the plot bunny fairy brought me, so? The Portal Qui-Gon sat silently in the little cantina, caught up in watching the graceful moves of the young woman behind the bar. Her transparent form moved in tandem with her living companion, though the gruff old man had no idea that he was not serving drinks alone. The Portal had two distinct groups of customers, and only one group was aware of that fact. He sighed and wished mournfully that he could actually taste the hazy blue liquid that the pretty young woman had poured into his cup. He could still feel the fire of it moving down his throat, but the taste eluded him. It would medicate him to an extent, but he could not particular enjoy it. That was the way of the other world, but he still didn?t like it. She gave him a commiserating smile and reached out to pat his hand. Her arm went through the body of her living companion, who started in surprise. Sometimes, a touch from one of the spirit world was just barely perceptible and somewhat disconcerting to the living. ?You know him?? Qui-Gon asked, more to pass the time than anything else. The Force had told him to be here?now. And so he was. He still served the Force even if he was now one with it. Old habits were hard to break. She stepped closer. ?He?s my father,? she said in an attractive, husky voice. ?He still misses you,? Qui-Gon noted. Glancing at her father, she nodded. ?And I miss him. I was all he had and now I?m not there?? Her words trailed off as she continued to study her father. ?How long?? Qui-Gon asked. She knew immediately what he was asking. ?Ten years, almost eleven,? she answered mournfully. Then she smiled. ?My name is Jurla. What?s yours?? ?Qui-Gon Jinn,? he said with an answering smile. ?How long for you?? Jurla asked. He sighed deeply, trying to add up the years. Time lost much of its meaning on the other side. What did time matter when there was an eternity waiting? ?Let?s see? More than thirty years now.? He shrugged, as if to say that the passage of time mattered little to him. ?You leave behind anyone special?? Jurla asked, leaning forward on the bar and giving him her full attention. ?Wife, kids?? Qui-Gon shook his head. ?No, I never married. I was a Jedi, you see, and they frowned on that sort of thing.? Jurla gave him another tender smile. ?I think you would have made a good father,? she said softly. Then she pointed at the old man standing close to them. ?He was a better father than he ever knew ? and I never even told him. Now?? She sighed and shook her head. ?Well, now I wish I had taken the time to tell him how much I love him.? Reaching out, Qui-Gon took her slim, transparent hands in his own. ?He knows,? he told her with conviction. ?He knows, because he loves you.? ?I guess that?s why I?ve stayed here so long,? Jurla admitted. ?I?m hoping he?ll feel me here and know how much he meant to me.? Qui-Gon carefully studied the old man, who seemed to be intently studying the very spot where his long-dead daughter stood. ?I think he knows, Jurla. I think he?s sensed you here with him many times,? he told her kindly. ?Somewhere deep inside, he?s felt you here.? The dead cannot weep, but he saw her face shift, a sort of release deep down inside of her ? the relief that spirits feel when they know they are free. It was a feeling too powerful for mere tears in any case. ?You should move on, you know,? he said. ?He would want you to,? he added, pointing to her father. She shook her head. ?I just have to make sure of one more thing before I go,? she confessed softly. ?And then?? ?What?s that??