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Before - Legends Missions

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by CaraJinn, Sep 25, 2018.

  1. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    Author: CaraJinn
    Era: Jedi Apprentice era
    World: Legends
    Genre: Adventure/Family
    Characters: Tahl Uvain, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Qui-Gon Jinn, Bant Eerin
    Summary: Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi disappeared during a seemingly peaceful mission and a brand new Master/Padawan team is sent to search for them.
    Author's notes: The initial plot bunny about a joint Tahl/Bant mission was given to me by WarmNyota_SweetAyesha (thanks [:D]) and like bunnies ofted to it teamed up with one of my own bunnies which was not large enough for a stand alone story. Hopefully the offspring of these two will be somewhat entertaining.


    ..........

    Chapter 1: Surprises and Missions

    "Why isn' she here yet, Master? Wasn't Master Tahl supposed to have dinner with us today?"

    14 (almost 15) years old Obi-Wan Kenobi's voice was full of surprise, and in the typical teenager's way his else well modulated voice broke into more high pitched tunes mid-way in the question, something which never failed to make him embarrassed when it happened.

    His Master, friend and mentor, possibly in the opposite order, Qui-Gon Jinn chuckled: "She will come. Tahl never fails to turn up to an appointment, but you have a valid point - she's also very precise. Maybe she's lost her way again."

    The Master/Padawan team of Jinn/Kenobi had spent the last 6 months trying to repair their faltering companionship after Obi-Wan's fateful decision about leaving the Jedi Order on Melida/Daan. It had taken them huge efforts and some intensive mediating from Tahl Uvain to begin feeling comfortable in each others company again but finally they had succeeded and Obi-Wan's probation time in the order had come to an end. Today the Council had informed that the Order accepted him as a full fledged padawan again. To celebrate Obi-Wan's reintroduction to the Jedi they had agreed to have dinner with Tahl and Obi-Wan was really looking forward to it. His road from initiate to padawan had been quite bumpy and he really appreciated the support, and sometimes ironic comments, from his Master's old friend. Somehow he suspected that she had something to do with the fact that Qui-Gon had turned up at Melida/Daan just in time to help calming the hostilities on the war exhausted planet.

    "Master Tahl never loses her way now," Obi-Wan interjected, and Qui-Gon nodded thoughtfully. His old friend could find her way to most places inside the Temple with a blindfold over her eyes, which strictly spoken was not a necessity after her loss of sight during her mission to Melida/Daan more than a year ago.

    "It is peculiar," he agreed. "She ensured me that she would join us to celebrate, well…to celebrate that we are on the active duty list again."

    He realized his mistake almost too late. Uttering the words: "…that you have been allowed into the order again" would have been cruel, and made Obi-Wan totally embarrassed.

    Fortunately he was saved from the mistake as Tahl entered the refectory and proceeded towards the counter with safe steps, seemingly aware of all the hindrances in front of her. Her ability of using the Force to navigate among both living beings and dead things as furniture had been honed to perfection through the last months of intensive training. A small initiate was following in her wake. Bant Eerin had been her good helper during her first weeks adapting to the blindness and they could still be seen together quite often. Obviously the two women enjoyed each other's company as Bant's shy and calm presence complemented Tahl's more self-confident personality.

    The two picked up their trays of food and set course directly towards the Jinn/Kenobi table.

    "Do sit down," Qui-Gon greeted them. "We have been waiting for you."

    "I'm sorry," Tahl answered, and her facial expression appeared to come very close to a smirk. "We were upheld by the council."

    "The Council?" Qui-Gon was nothing but surprised. "Why in all the galaxy did the council delay you at this time of the day?"

    The two women smiled towards each other.

    Obi-Wan was the first to notice.

    "Bant?" he exclaimed, "you have some silka beads behind your right ear. Does that mean that…?"

    The soft blush on Bant's salmon red skin said it all.

    "So it does," Tahl interjected, saving her rather shy companion from doing the explanation. "Bant has granted me the honor of becoming my Padawan. The council has just given us their approval and it took some time to find the right silka beads before we came here."

    "It is I that am honored, Master," Bant said shyly.

    "Oh! I'm so happy for you, Bant," Obi-Wan burst out, "you couldn't get a better master than Master Tahl."

    "And I couldn't get a better padawan," Tahl assured. "In the beginning I wasn't sure that I would be able to take an apprentice. It might be too difficult with my, well, limitations, but Bant has helped me so much and we have so much fun together that I decided to grab her before anyone else did."

    "Ah, my congratulations to both of you," Qui-Gon said, "I'm sure you will make an excellent team. So, this will be a double celebration then. Obi-Wan and I have just been assigned a new mission."

    "What kind of mission?" Tahl wanted to know, "not something overly dangerous, I hope."

    "So far we don't know the details," Qui-Gon answered. "We are requested to meet the Council at eight hour tomorrow to get the details, but I got the impression that it's more of a routine thing this time. Oh, well, we've had our fair share of dangerous missions already so a more quiet one won't do any harm I guess."

    Obi-Wan looked a bit less enthusiastic, but said nothing. For his (almost) 15 years old mind "quiet" easily seemed to have the same meaning as "boring".

    The quartet worked their way through the, for once, well tasting dinner in the refectory and decided to fulfill the celebration by finishing the meal with some dessert, to Obi-Wan's silent pleasure. Nowadays he always felt a bit hungry, but he tried to limit himself to the more nourishing meals despite the fact that he had a soft spot for sweet desserts and cakes.

    "Teenagers can beat a hungry akk dog any time," was his Master's laconic comment to the presence of an eternally empty cooling unit.

    Finally the last piece of the meal had been eaten and Tahl rose from the table.

    "Very well," she said," thanks for a pleasant dinner. We would have liked to stay but we have to find the Master of Depot and get some new gear for Bant. I swear that the Padawan bedroom in my apartment haven't been cleaned for a decade and she will definitely need some new blankets. I wish you a interesting mission tomorrow."

    Qui-Gon sighed, "There's an old curse saying 'May you live in interesting times!' Let's hope the mission won't be too interesting this time."

    Obi-Wan's farewell was even more informal.

    "Bant!" he said loudly as soon as they had left the refectory.

    Bant turned.

    "Be careful with the pile of…'things' you get from Master Chacl in the depot. I know from experience that when he's finished complaining about all the stuff he has to find, the pile will be rather high - and you're not overly tall…"

    A giggle from Bant was the last thing he heard, before the new Master/Padawan pair disappeared down to the depot.

    ….

    The following morning Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon entered the antechamber in front of the council chamber at eight hour precisely. They were let in almost immediately and found their way into the circle formed by the present Council Members' chairs.

    They bowed in unison.

    Master Yoda was the first to great them: "Good to see you it is. Ready for a new assignment you are, hmm? "

    "Yes, Master," Qui-Gon confirmed.

    "Good, good, a quite simple mission we have found for you since you haven't been out on active duty for a while."

    Neither of the pair answered. They just bowed lightly.

    "In two days from now some new senators will have a meeting with the Trade Federation in Prak City on Prakith. It is not very far from Coruscant and we do not expect anything to happen but since it's situated in the deep core we know that it's a rough space to navigate in, so the Senate has requested a Jedi to accompany the Senators during the flight. As soon as you're on ground you will have no duties before the meeting is over and you're escorting the Senators back home again. You are leaving tomorrow morning and can expect to be back home again within a week or so."

    The two Jedi in the center of the circle bowed again.

    "We will meet the senators in the interplanetary spaceport tomorrow morning," Qui-Gon confirmed.
     
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  2. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Superb start with a happy double celebration dinner! Kenobi is definitely at the stage where "quiet = boring" and my tummy is never full! [face_rofl] Bant and Tahl do seem to make a wonderfully complementary team. :) And the Prakith mission does seem like itshould be quite routine, which :p such things never are! :oops:
     
    AzureAngel2 and CaraJinn like this.
  3. ThisIsMe1138

    ThisIsMe1138 Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 26, 2018
    [face_laugh] Second line and you already have me smiling! =D= And wow, great beginning, you sure got me interested! Looking forward to seeing where this goes!
    And P.S. I love how you write Bant + Obi-Wan's relationship, even just in the first part :p
     
  4. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    I appreciate the nice feedback from both of you. I, myself, found this chapter a little dull and predictative, but I needed something to start with. Let's ramp up the action a notch in the next chapter...[face_nail_biting]. And since I'm away for a couple of days next week, I believe I can make the update already .
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2018
    AzureAngel2 likes this.
  5. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    Chapter 2: Flight

    Obi-Wan was not a boy for early mornings. On the contrary to his Master who was a real early bird, Obi-Wan despised getting up before sixth hour, but obviously senators young and elderly alike were even less fond of mornings. Departure from Coruscant Interplanetary Spaceport had been set to eleventh hour, which was unseeingly late for a Jedi.

    That didn't give Obi-Wan a long, lazy morning. At sixth hour. "Why isn't it spelled 'sith hour'? " Obi-Wan thought, as Qui-Gon knocked on his door to check that he was awake. When that said, he was really glad to be back in business again and that he had been accepted back into the Order.

    At eleventh hour sharp the two Jedi entered the spacecraft that was going to bring the senatorial delegation to Prakith. They immediately headed towards the cockpit to present themselves for the pilot.

    The pilot was a young Bothan with sparkling green eyes.

    "Wow, am I glad to see two Jedi on board," he greeted them. "We will follow the Byss run and I know from experience that it can be a bit…nasty when we have passed Iope. The gravity forces acting between the Starswarm and Kuar can be a real nuisance sometimes. By the way, I'm Shalk Coran, the pilot of this vessel. "

    "We come to serve," Qui-Gon assured him, while bowing deeply. "We will do our best to help you find the safest and most comfortable route to Prakith."

    Obi-Wan stood quiet beside him. His only reaction was to bow in synchrony with his Master, but his mind was elsewhere. There was something amiss, but he was not really able to pinpoint it.

    I have a bad feeling about this. Master Qui-Gon always tells me to be mindful of the present when I get this feeling, but this time it's for real. It's not like we're heading into danger, it's more like…something hidden. Something that won't reveal itself. Like something…evil passed by.

    He shrugged and did his best to shook off the eerie feeling that had made the tiny hairs at his neck bristle for a moment.

    Soon I will see ghosts in full daylight. If I ever mention this to Qui-Gon he will never stop teasing me about it. This ship seems to be in perfectly good condition and the pilot seem to know what he's talking about. He has probably flown this route numerous times before. It seems like his knowledge was first hand. I'm acting totally ridiculously.

    "Well, Masters Jedi" please take your seats and buckle in. The last senator just boarded so we're ready to take off. And with that he switched on his comm unit and gave instructions to the senators in the passenger compartment.

    "Welcome on board this shuttle to Prak City. We will depart in a few minutes as soon as space control has given us permission to take off. Please fasten your belts. When we're out of the atmosphere you may take them off until we are entering the deep core at Jerrilek in about two hours from now, if the hyperdrive ship has an artificial gravity system, but when we're entering the core the route may be a bit bumpy so it's wise to keep the safety belts fastened. Veryfastened."

    The last sentence was pronounced with a huge grin, and mirth sparkling in his green eyes.

    Obi-Wan refrained from giggling. Hopefully there weren't any airsick senators back there.

    The small ship lifted off of Coruscant's surface and set off into the sky.

    Two hours later, as predicted by Coran, they entered the deep core. This part of the galaxy was famous, or rather infamous, for it's number of dying stars and black holes, all with gravity fields strong enough to pull any ship away from it's preset course if they were to come to close. Obi-Wan could see from his Master's posture that the older Jedi was fully aware of the dangers lurking in this area. To a stranger Qui-Gon would seem completely relaxed, but Obi-Wan could sense the tendrils of the Force stretching from him towards the vaste space around the ship.

    "I recommend pulling one degree to the right as soon as we have passed Jerrilek," he suggested calmly, yet his voice indicted that doing otherwise would not be a wise decision. Some minutes later Obi-Wan could feel the almost negligible movement of the ship as it pulled gently to the right. He tried to access the Force himself and vaguely, as the almost inaudible whisper of a breeze through the trees, he could feel the gravity pull from what had to be the combined effect of Iope and the Starswarm.

    "Two degrees to the right would be a good thing," Qui-Gon suggested, and the pilot followed suit. Obi-Wan could once again feel the subtle change in the ship's direction.

    That must have been to avoid Kuar. If I'm right we will now have to take a rather sharp turn to the right to avoid Koros.

    A little while later he could hear Qui-Gon utter the predicted course change. The movement in the ship was just the tiniest little bit less soft than the previous. He could see Coran's shoulders slump a little. Now they were out in the more open space again and as soon as they had passed Keeara Major there should be no more direct hindrances. He knew from his hours of studying astronavigation together with Garen Muln that the leg fro Keeara Major to Prakith was blissfully free of black holes.

    "Garen would have loved this," he thought, "Me? Not so much. I prefer the less dangerous flights."

    Coran's excited voice interrupted his thought.

    "This was wonderful, Master Jedi. The last time I flew this route I was almost captured by the black holes near the Starswarm and I almost burned off the hyperdrive in the attempts of pulling out of the gravity field. This is the smoothest and calmest flight I've ever had in this area."

    The curiosity got the better of Obi-Wan: "How many times have you flown this route?"

    A new grin from the pilot: "Three. No, three and a half. The first time I tried i got too close to the dead star behind Kuar. I had to use all the engine power I had, and then some more to pull away. The hyperdrive was so badly superheated that I barely made it out of the core."

    "Oh," Obi-Wan swallowed. He had always enjoyed flying, but the thought of getting sucked into the gravity field of a dying star made him somewhat queasy. Somehow he didn't like the thought of being squeezed to death by the tremendous forces they created. It would have been such an undignifieddeath.

    As predicted by both Qui-Gon and the pilot (and by the blasted astromechanical books) the remaining journey was eventless and three hours later they were approaching Prakith and the spaceship landed with a soft "thud".

    "Let's wait until the senators have left the ship," Qui-Gon suggested. "I do not want to draw any attention by politicians. I meet more than enough of them as it is."

    Obi-Wan couldn't have agreed more.

    Some minutes later the spaceship was blissfully senator-free and the two Jedi disembarked. Once again Obi-Wan had felt the slight chill which somehow seemed to be a warning of something… unpleasant.

    I wonder why I feel this chill. I hope I'm not going to have a fever. it would be absolutely devastating ending up with a flu here, especially when we for once don't have the days filled with duties and can have a chance to explore the area a bit without any threats around.

    Qui-Gon cast him a curious glance.

    "What is it, Obi-Wan?" he asked gently.

    "Nothing. I just felt cold for a moment. I'm probably just out of practice when it comes to space travel. After all the space is cold place."

    Qui-Gon hid his smile well. The boy had been to some missions before…well, before Melida/Daan, but it would surely be an exaggeration to call him an experienced space traveller.

    "Let's find our hotel room and then go and find something to eat. We're officially off duty for the next couple of days until the senators are to return home again. We may just as well enjoy it."

    Together with Coran they left the ship and set off for the hotel in the center of Prak City.

    Their luck ceased to exist in the moment they entered the terminal building. Their hosts had obviously been awaiting to bring them to the city center together with the senators. Qui-Gon drew an inaudible sigh and entered the quite luxurious shuttle that had been sent to pick them up.

    Five senators of various races and genders had already found their place in the shuttle. One of them, a human male with reddish hair and some distinguished grey near his temples watched them with a keen blue glance when they entered.

    Again Obi-Wan felt the weird chill running down his spine and looked around to see if he could find any explanation. He couldn't. It was a sunny day on the admittedly quite stony planet, but the air condition was not anywhere nearby him and the temperature was moderate.

    The male senator spoke for the first time.

    "So, these are our Jedi pathfinders and our skilled pilot," he said with a friendly, almost timid, smile, "no wonder that the journey went so smooth."

    "We come to serve," Qui-Gon answered politely, "but the skilled pilot has more to do with the smooth travel than the presence of a couple of Jedi."

    The drive into the city was short and a little while later the small group was gathering in front of the reception counter in the rather elegant hotel. The human senator was the last of the senators to check in.

    "Name?" the receptionist asked politely.

    "Palpatine," the senator answered, "Sheev Palpatine, Senator of Naboo."

    Another chill ran down Obi-Wan's neck.
     
  6. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    I like the pilot and Qui-Gon's guiding them through the black holes :cool: All those premonitory chills, I don't blame Obi-Wan for having them giving the last line! =D=
     
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  7. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    I believe my brain was partly visualizing QuinlanVos when I wrote the pilot, or rather a mix between Quinlan and Han. [face_rofl] Well, neither of those two are Bothan, so it has to suffice.
     
  8. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    Chapter 3: Trapped

    Obi-Wan had expected they would get an ordinary double room, instead they were installed in something which looked like a suite with two separate bedrooms and a common living room in-between.

    He gaped. During the admittedly rather limited missions he had been to with his Master, they had been placed in rather modest quarters. He didn't really mind. He knew from childhood that a Jedi should not crave personal comfort, but he had to admit that the soft bed and huge bathroom which actually was equipped with a large bath tub was a pleasant surprise.

    "Master?" he said, "Are you certain this is the room we're supposed to have?"

    "Since we actually were instructed in how to have our palm prints read to lock and unlock the door, I believe so," Qui-Gon said with an almost boyish grin. "Every now and then this happens and we actually get luxurious accommodations when we're on a mission. Be grateful when it happens, -and don't get used to it. It doesn't happen too often."

    Obi-Wan nodded silently. Somehow he felt almost guilty of staying in this environment. It wasn't right.Jedi came to serve others, not to indulge in such luxury.

    "We could always ask to get a bunk down in the basement, if that makes you feel better," Qui-Gon suggested with a sparkle of mirth in his eyes. Obviously he was able to read his Padawan's thoughts even without a wide open bond.

    Obi-Wan shook his head.

    "No, that won't be necessary, Master. I will heed your teachings and learn to adapt to the circumstances."

    "Good," Qui-Gon answered, "and when that is settled I have a confession to make."

    "What? A confession? Why?"

    Obi-Wan was honestly confused. He couldn't see any reason for his Master to confess anything.

    "Sit down, Obi-Wan."

    Obi-Wan sat.

    "Well, here's the tricky thing, now. I have to some extent brought you here under false circumstances…"

    "What? How? I was standing beside you in the Council Chamber, Master."

    "True enough, and it is true that we were asked to help get the senators through the deep core, and there has really been an inquiry for our help. However, before we left Mace had an additional mission for me, which means us."

    Obi-Wan looked hurt.

    "Why didn't he say so? Master…do they…do they not trust me after all?"

    Qui-Gon frowned.

    "Be at ease young one, it's not that they do not trust you. Mace didn't explain the reason for being so secretive. I got the impression that they somehow wanted to protect you, but also that the rest of the Council doesn't know about this additional task. He asked me not to tell you about it beforewe left. However, he didn't say that I wasn't allowed to tell you afterwe had left…"

    Obi-Wan rubbed his chin. A habit he had initiated after he felt the first, very sparse stubbles forming on it some weeks ago.

    "What is this secret mission, then? " he asked.

    "You read the information about Prakith in our mission files, didn't you?"

    "Yes, Master."

    "Then you know that this planet is known for it's mining industry and that the planet's surface is literally covered with mine entrances and old mines?"

    Obi-Wan nodded in affirmation, and his Master continued:

    "What is less known to ordinary people is that the old Sith also had a base on this planet and that it is possible that an old Sith holocron is hidden here. We are supposed to look for it and presumably find it and bring it back so it can be safely stored in the Temple vault."

    "Oh," Obi-Wan commented quite sarcastically, "so we're going to find an old holocron which can be hidden almost anywhere in the caves and crevices on an entire planet? And we're supposed to do it in a timeframe of about two days?"

    "Sarcasm becomes you well, my Padawan," Qui-Gon sighed, "and under normal circumstances i would have agreed with you, but obviously Mace has done his homework because we already have some indications on where to seek. When the Sith were still here the mining operations had not begun yet and thus we must assume, or at least Mace does, that the holocron is hidden in one of the natural crevices on the planet. We know from the archives that the mining operations actually started from some deep natural caves nearby Prak City, but for some reasons the mining operations in one of them stopped seemingly without any reason at all not very long after the mining operations begun."

    Obi-Wan looked sceptic.

    "And you, I mean he, believes that the Sith holocron, if such exists, is to be found there?"

    "Yes."

    "We will need more than our fair share of luck to find it in a little more than a day," Obi-Wan sighed.

    "Let's put our faith in the Force. If it wills us to find it, we will find it. Let's get some food and then inspect the old mining area."

    The food was excellent, and even Obi-Wan's youthful appetite was satisfied when the meal came to an end. They had chosen to order food brought to their room to avoid any 'meddling with the senators', as Qui-Gon had said, very much in lack of diplomacy.

    The old mining area was found in the outskirts of the city. Actually, Obi-Wan mused, some of it may stretch under the existing city. Obviously the area was well known and boards with information about the mines were placed on potentially interesting spots. The assumed oldest mine was not very difficult to find since a sign proudly proclaimed: "Mine #1 - the first mine to be excavated and closed before any major findings were done".

    Obi-Wan scratched his head.

    "If it was so easy to find, how come that there haven't been jedi here already?" he asked incredulously.

    Qui-Gon shrugged. "Probably because the jedi haven't been here for years and there hasn't been any focus on Sith holocrons until recently."

    "Well, as we're here, let's take a brief look inside," Obi-Wan suggested, his natural curiosity slowly overcoming his just as natural cautiousness and skepticism.

    Qui-Gon nodded.

    "Since it's been closed for centuries they obviously haven't prohibited any entrance. That tells me that we can't get very far, but let's have a look. At least there's no sign that prohibits entrance.

    "And if it were, would you care?" his Padawan asked with a glimpse in his eye.

    "Impertinent brat," was the informative answer, followed by a light tug in the padawan's braid.

    The cave sloped slightly inward and the floor seemed rather smooth. There were no signs of tools indicating that any work had been done in the outer part. Most likely this was a part of the original cave which had existed also in the Sith's time period. They followed the cave for almost 100 meters before it stopped. A wall of stones blocked the cave.

    "Kriff it!"

    Qui-Gon very seldom allowed himself the luxury of swearing, but this was a time for breaking those principles. The massive wall seemed impenetrable. On the other hand. The fact that there wasa wall indicated a presence of something behind it.

    "I heed, and agree to, your statement, Master," Obi-Wan declared dryly, and earned a sharp glance from his Master. Again he stroke his hand over his disappointingly smooth chin. "We will indeed have some problems penetrating that wall."

    The two men silenced for a while, both trying to figure out how to get behind the pile of rocks.

    Obi-Wan was the first to look up.

    "We don't have to," he informed.

    "What? We don't have to what?" Qui-Gon asked.

    "We don't have to go through it. We can go over it," Obi-Wan explained. "Look. There. Near the ceiling there is a big boulder. If we manage to lift it away we may squeeze ourselves in over the top of the wall."

    Qui-Gon cast another glance to the area Obi-Wan had pointed to, and realized that the padawan was right. If they could move the large elongated stone they might actually be able to crawl in.

    "You're right," he said. "Let's try. We will have to move the rock parallel to the ceiling and then lay it down here."

    Obi-Wan refrained wisely from quoting Master Yoda's mantra about 'do or do not, there is no try'. Instead he moved to his Master's side.

    He could feel the Force gathering around them. Powerful, and focused around Qui-Gon, a little more reluctant and uncertain around himself, but it was there. A couple of small stones came tumbling down. Then some more.

    The huge stone was actually moving. Slowly, carefully, it hovered out from the stone wall and was laid to rest on the floor.

    "We did it." Qui-Gon almost laughed when he heard the astonishment in his padawan's voice.

    "We did," he confirmed, "with some help from the Force."

    "Let me climb up first," Obi-Wan suggested. "I'm smaller than you and it will be easier for me to crawl through the opening."

    Qui-Gon nodded: "Agreed, but don't go too far in before I catch up."

    As promised Obi-Wan quickly climbed the stone wall, and soon all Qui-Gon could see of him were his boots. A small light appearing around the boots indicated that Obi-Wan had lit a glowstick to see what was behind the wall.

    "It's similar on the other side," he said in a slightly muffled voice, "it's possible to climb down there, and about two meters from the foot of the wall there is a shaft going down. I believe I can se a ladder going down."

    "Climb down and wait for me," Qui-Gon instructed. "Do not try the ladder before I've joined you."

    A couple of minutes later he had managed to wiggle his large frame through the opening and stood on the floor beside the shaft.

    "I believe it's safe. The ladder seems sturdy enough. I cannot see any severe corrosion. Let me go down first since I'm the heavier of us. If I don't break it, you won't either."

    The vertical shaft was more shallow than expected. They had to climb only five meters down before they accessed another almost horizontal shaft which seemed to go into the stone. The walls clearly showed signs of mining operations in former days.

    The two jedi slowly made their way through the narrow shaft. An increasingly eerie feeling made them feel slightly dizzy and queasy. Someone, or something, didn't appreciate company, that was for certain.

    "Can you feel it too?" Obi-Wan asked, his voice little more than a whisper.

    "Yes, " Qui-Gon confirmed, "this must lead to the Sith holocron. It feels…'dark'."

    Finally they stood in another natural cave. The mining had stopped before they came to the cave opening and was substituted by something that might once have been a natural cave entrance. Centuries ago the main entrance seemed to have collapsed and part of the cave's wall was made up by boulders even larger than the ones they had passed by, but in this natural entrance the rocks were almost cemented together by a mixture of clay, soil and smaller stones, which under pressure had formed an impenetrable plug in the opening.

    The cave seemed to be the end of the road.

    It felt dark and dusty and…not fresh… and there was an unpleasant feeling of anger and hatred in the air.

    Obi-Wan was the first to notice the small crevice in the wall.

    "There it is!"

    Carefully he put his hand into the crevice and his fingertips met a smooth surface. Slowly his fingers curled around the angled shape. It felt cold. Unpleasant. Unforgiving.

    With an expression of distaste he pulled his hand out.

    The holocron was made from a shiny, black material resembling obsidian. It had the classical shape of a tetrahedron and the edges felt almost razor sharp. Near each pointed corner some fine ornaments had been carved. If it hadn't felt so dark he would have admired the crafting of it.

    "Give it to me," Qui-Gon said calmly.

    Without a word Obi-Wan handed it over to him, glad to get rid of the sinister looking shape.

    "Ow! " Qui-Gon exclaimed and dropped the tetrahedron. "It's burning."

    Obi-Wan watched him incredulously. It had been unpleasant to hold but it hadn't hurt him. He'd just despised the thing and all it represented.

    Qui-Gon bent down to take it up. This time he managed to hold it for some seconds before he let it drop.

    Obi-Wan sighed: "For some reason it doesn't hurt me, Master. I can carry it. I don't like it but I can do it."

    Qui-Gon looked pensively at him, then he nodded his agreement. Obi-Wan picked up the holocron from the floor and the two men turned and began walking back the same way they had come.



    The dark cloaked figure outside the mine opening was shielding heavily. He was good at shielding. He had learned the difficult, and painful, way that it was a good idea - a very good idea - to never let anyone notice you. His Master had been extremely aware of his thoughts and mindset and every once in a while he had been severely punished. He hated his Master and could hardly wait until the day came when he had learned all that he could. Then he would be the only Sith left. Until he got himself an apprentice of course. But that moment still belonged to the future. First of all he wanted to get rid of these awful Jedi. Only a dead Jedi was a ….tolerable Jedi. He felt the Force presence of the duet inside the cave inside the mine. Then he heard the faint metallic sound of something hitting the ladder. He lifted his arms and visualized the wall of stones crumble and fall - right into the shaft.

    And stones fell.

    Qui-Gon was the first to notice, one millisecond before the huge pile of rocks in the mine came tumbling down the mineshaft. Like an avalanche of hundreds, maybe thousands of small and large rocks came towards him. He jumped. Too late. One medium sized stone hit his temple and he fell.

    Obi-Wan saw it happen from the bottom of the shaft. He felt something dark and hateful and chilling pushand then he saw his Master lose his grip and fall and he saw a dark mass tumbling down towards him. He dropped the holocron and lifted his hands, while he felt the Force gather around him and float from his own body towards the falling Jedi Master to soften his fall. As soon as Qui-Gon hit the ground the Padawan grabbed his arms and pulled him to the side. The stones kept falling for something that felt like an eternity, then everything turned quiet. The air was filled with fine dust from crushed stones and it felt hard to breathe. Quickly he covered the unconscious Jedi Master's face with his own cloak and his own face with the sleeve of his cloak.

    Slowly the mineshaft turned quiet. Only the sound of small pebbles which had not yet settled was to be heard. The vertical shaft was completely plugged. They were trapped.
     
  9. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    I loved the comfy luxury of the hotel rooms. The Qui/Obi banter is wonderful.
    Excellently vivid details of the mineshaft & caves. =D= A very mysterious mission indeed and a Sith to set a literal trap! [face_nail_biting]
     
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  10. ThisIsMe1138

    ThisIsMe1138 Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 26, 2018
    Well, I just "watched" this thread :D I'm super bad at writing comments (sorry!) but I do really love this story, and like Nyota said, the Qui + Obi banter is hilarious! Can't wait for more! =D==D==D=
     
  11. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Yikes! That got real! And the mysterious bad vibes that our friend Obi-Wan is picking up would be Sheev's Sheeviness, of course.
     
  12. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    More missions are to come. Remember: plural in the title

    More banter is to come, though not necessarily among those two...

    There may be a small treat for you in the upcoming chapter...[face_tee_hee]
     
  13. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    Chapter 4: Missing

    If Tahl Uvain had been able to see her padawan, she would have seen that the young girl's demeanor was unusually unhappy when she entered their common apartment. She didn't have to see it. Even a blind person without any connection to the Force at all would have felt it. Tahl even had the Force.

    "You seem like you've sold nerfs without getting any credits. What's the matter?" she asked gently

    Bant Eerin let out a deep sigh.

    "Nothing, Master. It's nothing."

    "'Nothing' doesn't sound that way, nor does it feel that way. Something is bothering you. Please tell me."

    "I…well…I feel kinda stupid, but Obi-Wan wasn't in class today, and I believed they were sent for only a short mission. I'm afraid something has happened. Somehow he seems to attract trouble."

    Tahl nodded. The girl had a point. Throughout his short career as a Jedi Padawan, Obi-Wan Kenobi had attracted all kinds of mishaps and trouble.

    "It's only been four days since they left," she comforted. "They may have been delayed. The were going to the deep core and the shores there may be rough. Something may have happened to their ship."

    She could feel the faint, miserable smile from her padawan.

    "If that was meant to be comforting, Master, you could have left out the last sentence…"

    "Well, yes. But don't worry. I bet they will turn up soon. He's with Qui-Gon, you know, and Qui always manages to find a way out. But I agree, let's make some inquires if they're not back tomorrow. I assume they have reported any delays to the Council."

    Bant brightened: "Will you really do that, Master? Thank you so much. I don't know why but I'm really worried about him…them."

    "Now you've made me slightly worried too," Tahl admitted, "we'll ask Mace if they're not back by tomorrow."

    Bant almost chuckled despite her worry. Becoming a padawan meant that she had to adapt to new things, but one she never believed she would feel comfortable about was hearing the slightly frightening Council Member mentioned simply as 'Mace' in that casual tone used about old friends. Surely she knew that Master Windu, Master Tahl and Master Qui-Gon were old friends from the creche, but still it felt weird.



    The following day Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon were still missing. After the last lecture of the day Bant hurried home to the apartment, and found Tahl waiting for her.

    "He wasn't there?" she asked.

    "No," Bant stated matter of factly.

    "That's it then, let's check with Mace."

    Tahl reached for the comm link. After a few 'beeps' someone answered, presumably Master Windu.

    "Hello, Mace. I was just wondering…have you heard anything from Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan yet? Bant and I are getting a bit worried. Shouldn't they have been back by now? My understanding was that this was just a short mission."

    Bant couldn't hear the answer given, but from Tahl's answer it was reluctant.

    "Yes, yes I know he's a big boy now and completely capable of taking care of himself, but you know they tend to get into trouble wherever they go."

    The answer still was negative, so Tahl ramped up a notch.

    "I know, I know, but now you're being stubborn. Don't go all stubborn bantha on me, Mace. I won't have any of it. Do I really have to mention Bandomeer to you, or Melida/Daan or even Stewjon. Or, if anything else fails: Auratera."

    Obviously something of what she said seeped in, because her temper calmed a bit.

    "OK, agreed. You check with the Senate if the Senators have reported back yet and if not, you let me hear tomorrow. And promise me that you will think about sending a search party for those two rascals if you don't get a good explanation about their whereabouts."

    She switched off the comm and turned towards Bant.

    "He's going to make an inquiry to the Senate whether they have got news from the Senators who went to Prakith. If they can't explain where Qui and Obi are, Mace will consider sending a search party for them."

    Bant brightened.

    "Good. What was it about Auratera?" she asked curiously. "I recognized the other planets but Obi-Wan has never mentioned he has been to any planet with that name."

    Tahl shrugged,

    "He hasn't. Auratera was something totally different," she explained, hoping fervently that Bant wouldn't pursue the question.

    She didn't.

    The rest of the evening was spent peacefully enough. They both avoided the issue 'Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan'.

    …..

    No Obi-Wan turned up the following day. And no Qui-Gon either. Nor did Mace Windu, to Tahl's big frustration. She finally managed to hunt him down in the afternoon.

    "Well?" she said expectantly when he appeared from the Council Chamber. After checking his quarters (nobody there) and his comm link (no answer) she decided that waiting outside the Council Chamber would be the safest bet.

    He shook his head, his face as calm and stern as ever, but she could hear his concern shining through his voice.

    "No. I'm sorry, Tahl. They didn't come back."

    "What?"

    Tahl felt slightly dizzy for a moment and she almost felt like sitting down again. Almost.

    "Do you mean they're dead? What happened?"

    "No, no that's not what I mean," Mace shot in, "I meant what I said. They never turned up when the senators' ship was about to leave Prak City. The senators did not want to wait for them . For some reason Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan had kept some distance to the senators throughout the trip so the senators believed they were only passengers on the outbound flight. The pilot tried to convince them otherwise but they insisted that they needed to get back on time."

    "Important business, they claimed," he added with more than a hint of sarcasm in his voice. "Well, anyways, the pilot gave up to persuade them and backtracked his own route back to Coruscant. Clever guy that fellow."

    Tahl shook her head.

    "It's impossible. How can they just have disappeared from the planet's surface?" she asked incredulously. "Can they have left the planet with another transport, and if so, why? Qui would be able to do such a thing, but Obi-Wan is far to keen on doing things the correct way so he would never have aborted the mission."

    Mace nodded. "I know. It seems very likely that they're still there for some reason and that's why the Council took such a long time to recede today. We have agreed to send an investigation team to look for them."

    Tahl suddenly realized that she hadn't heard any other Council members leaving the chamber.

    "I would suggest you comm your padawan immediately," he said calmly. "You're about to get a mission."

    ….

    It took Bant less than 10 minutes to get to the Council Chamber, and she'd been in the study wing of the Temple, trying to keep her thoughts away from Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon when Tahl commed her.

    "Master Tahl, what is it? Have you got any news about them?"

    She didn't have to explain who 'they' were.

    "Sort of," Tahl nodded. "We are called before the Council now."

    Bant's salmon colored skin turned visibly paler.

    "What…? Are they…? " She almost choked on the words and didn't finish the sentence.

    "Let's go inside," Tahl instructed, "and don't panic."

    The team stood in the center of the circle of chairs. Most council members were present, only one chair was occupied by it's owner's hologram.

    Tahl bowed and Bant followed suit.

    Mace spoke up.

    "During today's investigations the Council has experienced that Master Jinn and Padawan Kenobi never returned from Prakith. We do believe they're still there, but we have no idea why or where. Thus we have agreed to send an investigation team. Master Uvain, Padawan Eerin, you are a very new team, but we do not consider this mission to be a very risky one and you're both good friends of the missing team. Would you accept the mission of investigating how and why they have disappeared, and if possible get them back home again?"

    Tahl felt Bant's surprise through their training bond. It was almost unheard of to send such a new team on a mission, and with herself being blind it would be even more challenging… Now she understood the long council session. There had probably been long discussions about her abilities and if she could be sent on a mission with a padawan she'd had for a little less than a week.

    "Yes, Masters. We accept this mission. When do you want us to leave for Prakith?" she answered in a steady voice.

    "Leave this evening you will," Master Yoda chimed in, "willing to take you to Prakith the senators' pilot is. Worried about his 'jedi friends' he claims to be. Return to quarters and pack your bags then meet him on platform five, dock sixteen. Wait for you on in Prak City he will. Background information about Prakith is sent to your information pads as we speak."

    The pair in the centre of the Council Chamber bowed and retreated quickly. Their first mission was a fact.
     
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  14. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Loved how Bant insisted and Tahl persisted. =D= Now they're going after the missing duo. [face_relieved]
     
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  15. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Tahl called Mace Windu a stubborn bantha! [face_laugh]
     
  16. Vek Talis

    Vek Talis Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Oct 12, 2018
    I'm enjoying this very much. Read it from start to last update. Your characterizations of Yoda, Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan are very well done. =D=

    'Sith' hour instead of sixth hour made me literally laugh out loud.

    And I just LOOOOVE me some Palpatine. [face_devil]

    I'm looking forward to more! Maybe Palpatine will get his hands on the Sith holocron. I was hoping that was what he was after, but trying to 'off' some Jedi was just as good. :D
     
  17. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    Thank you all of you. I really appreciate the feedback.

    Yep, Tahl tries to be the calm and sensible one, but as we all know she has a soft spot for our two friends.

    Well, he sometimes is :p. And since they're childhood friends her filters aren't exactly dense.

    Obi-Wan's feelings about early mornings is well known from other stories so I felt the definition was appropriate. He would most certainly have said that as a teenager. [face_whistling]
     
  18. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    Chapter 5: Darkness

    Obi-Wan didn't like the darkness. Actually he hated it. He had experienced it in the mines of Bandomeer. He had seen more than enough of it in the tunnels of Melida/Daan, and he didn't like it better now. On a more philosophical level he was able to conclude that 'hate' was a less than desirable feeling when he was in the total blackness of a mine buried under several meters of gravel and soil and solid rock. And least of all in the presence of an ancient Sith holocron. No, 'hate' was not a good idea, but he certainly reserved the rights to dislike it.

    The discomfort was enhanced by the knowledge that his Master was laying by his side, unconscious. Not good indeed. Back in the mines of Bandomeer he'd had Qui-Gon's calming -and awake- presence. Now he had Qui-Gon's very still, very pale (well, everything went pale in the glow of a blue lightsaber, but he was pretty certain that Qui-Gon's complexion didn't look good) presence. He had managed to pull his Master away when the avalanche of gravel came tumbling down the mineshaft but obviously Qui-Gon hadn't been able to dodge one of the falling rocks. A deep gash in the Master's temple was a silent witness of that.

    In the first few minutes he had tried to wake his mentor, but then he realized that maybe resting was for the best. With a head injury like that he should probably be resting anyway, so Obi-Wan had put him in a stable position on the floor and ensured that he would still continue breathing. For now that was all he could do.

    He didn't at all like the darkness. It had never bothered him before but down here it felt slightly different than the other 'darknesses' he had encountered. Something or someone in the darkness seemed to be preying on his fear, though as any fifteen year old boy he wouldn't admit that he was scared. Not to anyone, not even to himself. Actually, when he thought about it, particularly not to himself.

    If he was to survive this ordeal and get himself and his Master out of the tomb they had ended up in, he would have to keep his mind bright and sharp. Which wasn't the best comfort anyway, he thought sarcastically. He had never considered himself being particularly bright, so that would be a rather dim light in the dark.

    I assume the senators and the pilot will miss us if we don't turn up when the ship is leaving. Then they will send a rescue party to find us. But will they actually figure out that we're here? How can they? We never told anyone where we were heading. They may even think we have left the planet for some other mission. No, wait, we still have our rooms so they will realize that we haven't intentionally left. That's something. So they will start looking for us. But will we be alive by the time they find us, that's the question? We can for sure live several days without food, but we will need water. Why didn't we bring a canteen? Stupid, stupid, stupid… But we didn't, so we will have to find some water somewhere down here to survive. That's probably easier said than done. But I will have to try. I'm afraid that Master will not wake up so quickly, if ever. No, don't go in that direction. He will wake up. He has to. And we will get back home. I just have to find out how. But first: water. This is a mine after all and one of the most known problems with mining is that the mines tend to fill with water. No! Not that. It's bad enough being buried down here, I really don't want to drown as well. That's too much.

    The last thought resulted in a small wry smile when Obi-Wan remembered his old Creche Master Ali-Alann's comments about his pessimistic side. After all the mine had been there for centuries so if it hadn't been filled completely with water by now, it would certainly not be doing that in his lifetime. Which, by the way, threatened to be unpleasantly short unless he found a solution to the water problem, or even better : managed to find a way out from the mine.

    With a determined mien he rose from the floor and lit his lightsaber. The blue light shone reassuringly in front of him and he felt a little better. With a last glance to Qui-Gon's unconscious body he turned and went down the tunnel they had come from. If he were to find any water or humidity here he would have to go down. That much was certain.

    It was just as dark and sinister as before. Even worse, actually. The last time they went further into the mine they had been two, now he was alone. And he didn't like 'alone' any better than 'darkness'.

    Force, if we survive this, I hope I never have to be alone more in my entire life.

    He knew the hope was in vain because in any jedi knight's life there would be solo missions and times were he was on his own. But hopefully there would be other living beings around, so he wouldn't have to be all by himself…

    It didn't take him long to return to the cave where they'd found the holocron. It still felt somber but, somehow less so than when they were there the last time. An echo of Qui-Gon's words from an earlier mission ran through his head: "Stretch out with your feelings, Padawan. The Force will guide you to whatever you need to know. You just have to learn to listen."

    Maybe the Force would grant him access to some water if he listened carefully enough? It was worth a try. Reluctantly he switched off his saber and knelt down in a meditative pose. The silence engulfed him and for a long period of time he was oblivious of the world surrounding him. Then he heard the weak sound: 'blip'. Then another 'blip' and one more. Slowly he broke the meditation, and rose from the floor. There waswater somewhere. The sound of the small drops was clear but not very frequent. He ignited his lightsaber again and began searching the walls. Dry, cold stone met his palm until there suddenly wasn't anymore, just an empty darkness. A crevice, just broad enough for a grown up man to get through. He slid easily through.

    This had to be another of the old mining tunnels. The floor was sloping slightly downwards and as he carefully went down the slope (stumbling in his own feet here would not be the best of ideas…) the sound of water dripping into more water increased in strength and soon he stood before a black pool of water which stretched further inwards. Carefully he bent down and tasted the water. It tasted surprisingly clean and he assumed it was ground water which once had flooded this part of the mine and the miners had obviously chosen to abandon it instead of trying to drain it. He bent down again and drank greedily, partly to remove the stony dust from his mouth and partly because he actually was thirsty.

    "Good," he thought, "now I just have to find a way to bring some water back to Master Qui-Gon when he wakes up."

    His prayers in that respect were answered. On his way back he saw a form placed in a niche in the rock. A small drinking bowl made of roughly carved wood stood had been placed there. He assumed it had been the food or drinking bowl belonging to one of the workers. He picked up the bowl and returned to the water. The wooden bowl was dry and severely cracked so it wouldn't hold much water. Carefully he put it down into the water hoping that it would swell enough to be able to hold water later on.

    Once again he returned to the front cave where Qui-Gon laid in the same position as he'd been in when Obi-Wan left.

    Obi-Wan wrapped the cloak around himself and laid down to rest, and maybe sleep.

    When he woke again nothing had changed. Qui-Gon had not stirred the slightest bit, and the darkness was as impenetrable as it had been since the cave opening closed.

    I cannot just sit here. What if nobody is searching for us? The pilot and the senators may think we have been called away on another mission. What do they know about jedi life? Nothing. If we're ever going to get out of here I should try to find a way to save ourselves. Master Qui-Gon is still out cold and he may be in need of medical care. There's no way that I can manage to lift all those tons of gravel and rocks up the mineshaft but there may be a chance that I can manage to get out through the other opening we saw. Or rather 'not-opening'. I have no idea how thick the stone layer there is but I can at least begin to move the stones. Maybe I eventually can find a way through. But I need to start while I'm still strong enough. With time I will weaken due to lack of food.

    The work was slow, it was heavy and last but not least boring. Every now and then he had to stop, switch on his lightsaber to get an overview of the situation and then he began the digging again. Soil and smaller rocks were removed by hand while he needed help by the Force to remove the larger ones. In between the work periods he went back to the main cave to see if his Master had woke up and to rest for a while before continuing the painfully slow work.

    "I really do not hope Master Qui-Gon will define this as 'frivolous use of the Force' , " he thought with a wry smile. "If so, kriff it. This is self defense, and if - no when - we get back to the Temple I will have a good portion training in moving things by means of the Force. This is definitely more challenging than moving the cushions in the creche…"

    He lost the track of time. He eventually lost the nagging feeling of hunger, and the just as nagging fear for his Master was expertly released into the Force.

    I do not want to think about that. Master Qui-Gon is still breathing, even though it's slowly. He will live through this, and so will I. I just have to continue to dig and sooner or later I will be out in the original tunnel into the cave. I refuse to believe that the entire tunnel has collapsed.

    On something that might have been the third day in the cave he returned to the main area to get some rest. As he sat down on his chosen spot beside his Master he suddenly touched a smooth surface: The holocron. Somehow it felt different. Where previously smooth sides and sharp facets had been forming it's surface now seemed to have changed shape. The tetrahedron somehow had opened, one side almost completely cracked up, probably by one of the falling rocks.

    Curiously he ran his fingers over it and to his astonishment an eerie orange-red light began to glow. A small figure all dressed in a black cloak appeared in the center of the light. The figure crossed his arms and seemed to look upon Obi-Wan from below his hood.

    "Who, or what, are you?" Obi-Wan whispered.

    The figure was silent for a long time. Then: "I'm the Messenger."

    "The what?"

    "The Messenger. I was created to keep the message from the place where time and space ceased to exist, so my kind can be prepared when time is right."

    "You are a Sith," Obi-Wan concluded drily.

    "So I am, or was."

    "What's your name?"

    "My name is not important, I am the Messenger."

    Obviously the little figure was a secretive one. Obi-Wan tried again.

    "What is your message?"

    The holocron silenced. Somehow Obi-Wan sensed it was trying to make up it's mind whether it could tell him or not. The light from it dimmed gradually. The bright orange-red light darkened to a sickly brownish color.

    "I'm losing my power," the holocron stated. Obviously something of it's mechanism had been destroyed when it was hit.

    "You should give me your message then, before it's too late," Obi-Wan encouraged. "Else it might be lost forever."

    "I am the Messenger," it repeated.

    More silence. The light dimmed even more. Then, as if it realized that it's time soon had come the dark figure straightened:


    From the dark land of light

    his destiny bright

    Brought to the kingdom

    alone did he come.

    Light will stand by him, darkness engulf him

    warrior's fall, a new era begins.

    Created by flames, a Lord clad in black

    our enemy old he he will hunt and attack.

    Destiny's child, trained by the wise,

    by his appearance the Sith shall arise.


    The last glow of light from the holocron died and it went silent. The darkness was back.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2018
  19. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Ooooh! I am so in sympathy with Obi-Wan's strong distaste of darkness. I can so relate to his pessimistic what-ifs but am glad he was able to put those aside to get practical things attended to. And the message from the holocron, very compelling & mysterious. A nice collection of "riddles". =D=
     
  20. Vek Talis

    Vek Talis Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Oct 12, 2018
    Excellent update.

    Obi-Wan, afraid of the dark? :D

    The Messenger sounds like a fun guy. :rolleyes:

    And, what kind of master is Qui-Gon, anyway? Lying around, sleeping all day while his padawan does all the work? Lazy bum. :p

    Maybe Obi will get them out before Tahl even shows up?

    And then Palpatine can blast them all!!! [face_devil] [face_skull]

    [face_praying] I can hope, anyway. ;)
     
  21. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    Well, Obi-Wan always has this slightly pessimistic streak.

    Let's be honest - wouldn't you have been afraid of the dark too, if you were captured in a collapsed mine? And, yes, I wish I could do a little more with The Messenger, but I'm afraid he has left his message. At least for now. :p
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2018
  22. CaraJinn

    CaraJinn Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2018
    Chapter 6: The Rescue Party

    "…and when the ship was about to leave, the two Jedi were not on board so I commed the hotel and asked them to check but the room Master Jinn and his apprentice had shared was empty. I suggested for the senators that we could delay take off for a little while but then were all so busy to get back home to theirimportantappointments," Shalk Coran finished his story.

    "When did you last see Master Jinn and Padawan Kenobi?" Tahl asked.

    The young pilot looked slightly ashamed.

    "Well, actually that was when we left the ship… Prak City has a couple of really nice bars and since I had been alternating between jobs the last three weeks before this trip without a single break, I decided to make the best of my day off so I went there. It was…quite late when I came back to the hotel." Shalk answered.

    "I see, so in reality no-one has seen them since you arrived on planet?"

    Shalk shook his head: "Not as far as I know of."

    "Blast it!" Tahl cursed and got a shocked glance from her padawan.

    "Master!?" Bant admonished, "I didn't think you were swearing."

    "Sorry, Padawan. I just had to state my opinion in a more…uh…determined way than usual. How come that our two friends always seem to be amidst of 'things', but now they have become the invisible jedi?" she sighed. "It's just a bit frustrating that we don't know where to start searching, except that we have to begin with the hotel."

    "That's not entirely true, " Bant said calmly.

    "What?"

    "Master, don't you remember Master Windu said they had an additional mission. They were not only following the senators safely through the deep core, they were looking for a holocron too."

    "Right. And how will that help us?" Tahl sighed.

    "If we find the holocron we may find Master Jinn and Obi-Wan too," Bant explained.

    "Good point," Tahl admitted, "the bad thing is that we don't have any ideas about where the holocron may be found."

    "What is a holocron?" Shalk shot in.

    "It's a device which has recorded a story and when opened it can retell the story," Tahl explained, "some of them are even intercommunicating and can answer questions."

    The pilot nodded, trying to pretend he understood.

    "Well, Master Jedis, let's see what we can find when we get to Prakith. If we're going to keep the time slot for take off you two should get seated now and we'll soon be on our way."

    …..

    The journey to Prakith was not very eventful, with exception of the incident where the gravity forces from the Starswarm had changed since Shalk's last trip and they almost got dragged towards the planets. Only Tahl's sensing of the drag had warned him early enough to be able to pull away in the right time.

    It was early afternoon when they arrived at Prak City.

    "Show us the hotel where you were staying the last time," Tahl demanded.

    "Why?" the young Bothan answered with feigned surprise in his voice, "I was of course planning to take you to a hotel on the other side of the City."

    And then, with a more serious voice he added: "I'll just get an air taxi and we will be there in a few minutes. I have a feeling that we shouldn't let your friends wait more than needed be."

    "You tell me," Tahl sighed, "I just don't have the faintest idea of where to start looking for them."

    As promised Shalk managed to track down a taxi and the transfer into the City went smoothly. Band looked out of the windows in the taxi with huge eyes. This was her first trip away from Coruscant and it was much to take in.

    "Master, everything is so…gray," she whispered.

    Tahl nodded: "Keep in mind that this is a world where the economy has been based upon mining for centuries. Mining tends to be dusty, and dust tends to spread widely."

    Bant let out a low sigh. Being from a water world meant that her skin was reacting violently to dust and she could already feel a faint itching, even though the taxi was clean enough. It would definitely be a less than pleasant mission.

    The hotel receptionist remembered Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan well.

    "Yes, Ma'am, I mean….Master Jedi, I was here when your friends checked in but then I had a couple of days off, so I didn't see them later on."

    "I see," Tahl commented, "would it be possible to speak to someone who might have seen them leaving, and in which direction?"

    "I will have to ask the manager about that," the receptionist answered. "I'm not really allowed to let out that kind of information."

    "Please do so."

    The receptionist grabbed a comm link and spoke quietly to someone. "Yes, I will need an overview over those who were on duty the last week. Yes, they are looking for the guests at room 416. The ones who seem to have disappeared. No, they have not returned yet and there are two other Jedi here to look for them now, so maybe we finally can get paid for the room."

    He looked up: "The list will be here in a minute, Master Jedi."

    But before any lists turned up the man who had been meticulously cleaning the floor in the lobby came up to them.

    "I'm sorry to interrupt, but I overheard parts of your discussion. You are looking for two Jedi?"

    "Yes, we are."

    Encouraged by Tahl's confirmation the man continued: "I believe I may have been the last one to see your friends here in the hotel. On their way out the first evening after the senators' arrival they came down and on their way out they were asking me about the old mines in the outskirt of the City. As you may know that part of the mining operations was closed down ages ago, but we've kept a couple of the older mines open for sightseeing and education."

    "Did you tell them where to go?" Tahl asked.

    "I sure did. I didn't see any harm in that. It's a place where most of the tourists go," he explained.

    "But why didn't you say anything when they went missing?" Bant exclaimed, "They could have been rescued days ago…"

    "Padawan!" Tahl admonished, "Mind your speaking."

    "I'm sorry, Master, but what if they're out there - lost in one of the mines?"

    "Actually," their new acquaintance informed, "I didn't know they were missing until I overheard you speaking. I am on the same shift as the receptionist and I've been off duty since then too. I didn't know they never came back until minutes ago."

    Bant looked ashamed: "I'm sorry Mister. I spoke too hastily."

    The receptionist had been quiet during the entire discussion but now he wanted to be a part of the conversation again.

    "I have a suggestion, Master Jedi. Like myself Rilekh here is going off duty in about an hour from now. Maybe he could show you to the exhibition mines if you want to have a look there as soon as his shift is over. While we're waiting I can take you to the suite the two Jedi checked in to. It's quite irregular but the manager approved it. After all, if that may help to find your friends it's a good thing. "

    "I appreciate your help. Both of you," said Tahl.

    Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan's suite had the slightly stale smell of a room where no fresh air had been let in for some time. Bant could see that their small traveling bags stood neatly placed, one in each bedroom. The cloaks were gone. Obviously their departure had been planned. A further investigation revealed a tablet which seemed to belong to the hotel. Curiously she switched it on. The tablet flickered and a map over something that apparently was the old mining area was showing on the screen .

    "Master, they seem to have been reading about the mining area. The first page that appeared tells about the oldest mine in the area," Bant informed.

    Tahl nodded: "That's where they must have been heading, then. Knowing Qui-Gon I assume he couldn't resist going there to see if he could sense the holocron somewhere. Since the artifact was said to be ancient it makes sense that it would be in the oldest mines, if there at all. And since the rumor says that it's still on planet it may have been hidden in one of the old mines or caves. It makes sense, I guess."

    "And he brought Obi with him," Bant added.

    "The question is: Why didn't they come back?" Tahl sighed. "Both Qui and Obi are resourceful so I find it hard to see what could have kept them there, wherever 'there' may be."

    Bant's lower lip quivered slightly: "Maybe someone has captured them?"

    "Maybe…" Tahl said doubtfully, "but to capture those two would not have been easy as long as they were together. And somehow I can't imagine that Qui-Gon would get lost in a mine either. He's a stubborn old bantha but he's no fool. He should be fully able to find his way out of any mine. Let's go back to the reception and check in ourselves, and as soon as we've put our bags in our rooms we go down and wait for Rilekh."

    The timing was perfect. Rilekh had just ended his shift and was waiting by the door when they came down to the lobby after getting rid of their luggage.

    "It's not far from here, but I have my own speeder in the backyard so we can use that," he announced proudly.

    The trio followed him out a back door and out into a backyard where a small, not overly clean, speeder was waiting. They squeezed in, with Shalk in the passenger seat in front and Tahl and Bant in the backseat.

    Rilekh had been right. The journey took about 10 minutes in a very modest speed. The evening traffic in Prak City didn't allow much speed.

    They parked in a designated parking lot outside the mining area, and the small group unfolded themselves from the speeder and headed for the abandoned mining area. The museum was obviously closed but the old mining area was to Tahl's surprise open for visitors.

    "Mind your steps, Master," Bant warned her. "The ground is fairly uneven."

    Tahl nodded affirmatively and they began to move into the area.

    "Where's the oldest mine?" she asked.

    "It's over there, by the hill," Rilekh explained, "the first mines were dug into natural caves in the hill. When the technology developed we began doing ordinary mining, working our way down."

    "Let's go there first," Tahl decided.

    Shortly after they stood outside a low mining entrance.

    "This is 'Old Abyss'," Rilekh explained."It's not really an abyss at all but the story says that when they were excavating this mine they came to another natural cave below this one and the ground suddenly opened under some workers. They fell down into the cave below, and the mining operations continued from that level. They survived but I believe one or two of them got some broken ribs and legs when they dropped down."

    "Let's take a look," Tahl decided again. "Padawan, in case I cannot feel the 'abyss' in front of me, please stop me before I share the experience with the miners."

    "Yes, Master."

    "It's really no danger now," Rilekh shot in. "A part of the ceiling collapsed some years ago and the 'abyss' is now hidden behind a wall of rocks and soil. You might stub your toe or punch your nose but you wouldn't fall into it."

    Carefully they entered the mine.

    As they proceeded Rilekh slowed down gradually, lifting his glow rod up and then lowering it again.

    "This is weird," he said.

    "What?"

    "We should see the wall by now," he explained. The ceiling collapsed in the outer part of the mine so it's really not far to walk."

    Bant looked up, nervously.

    "Don't worry," Rilekh comforted her, "they have been securing the ceiling since then. Couldn't risk that any tourists were hurt.".

    "Please," Bant shot in, "can you lower the glow rod again? I believe I saw something there. To the right."

    Rilekh did as he was asked.

    "Look," she said, "see the big flat stone over there? And beside it is a pile of gravel. It's definitely not a wall as the one you described but isn't it the back wall of the mine we can see further in? It's humidity glistering on the stone. That wouldn't happen on a pile of rocks and soil as you described."

    Rilekh gaped. "I think you're right, young lady, but where in all the moons and stars' is the wall?Tons of soil doesn't disappear from the planet's surface just like that."

    "Maybe not from the planet's surface, but it could merge into it," Shalk shot in. "I bet a week's salary that the small pile we see over there is the top of the 'abyss'. The wall must somehow have fallen into the opening and plugged it. That's how it has disappeared."

    Tahl and Bant exchanged a worried tug in their newly formed training bond.

    "Obi-Wan," Bant exclaimed, "he and Master Jinn may have been trapped if they were down there when the wall collapsed."
     
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  23. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    I am happy Bant and Tahl have met Rilekh who can help with search and rescue. I'm glad the pilot's along too. :)
     
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  24. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    @CaraJinn, I have followed this story before on my mobile phone, but at no time to leave an answer before.

    You have the magic to suck the reader in from the beginning and suffering along with the characters. Plus your characterization of Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon is very explicit. @};-
     
  25. Vek Talis

    Vek Talis Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Oct 12, 2018
    Sorry, Padawan. I just had to state my opinion in a more…uh…determined way than usual.

    Yes, 'determined' sometimes helps you get out frustrations that might otherwise turn you toward the Dark Side. :p



    but now they have become the invisible jedi?

    They should make a movie of that, lol. Instead of The Invisible Man.



    "If we find the holocron we may find Master Jinn and Obi-Wan too," Bant explained.

    Now, remind me who's the master and who's the padawan? :p Cause Bant is a clever person.



    "Why?" the young Bothan answered with feigned surprise in his voice, "I was of course planning to take you to a hotel on the other side of the City."

    [face_plain] Nobody likes a smart mouthed Bothan.



    so maybe we finally can get paid for the room."

    He looked up: "The list will be here in a minute, Master Jedi."

    Why am I not surprised that credits matter more than two lives in jeopardy? [face_plain]



    Bant looked ashamed: "I'm sorry Mister. I spoke too hastily."

    Well, at least she owned her mistake.



    please stop me before I share the experience with the miners."

    Sure, Master. Whatever you say. [face_devil] Oops, sorry Master ...And Bant moves up the chain of command. :p


    Excellent update. Hopefully they can get Obi-wan and Qui-gon out of there... so the future Emperor can BLAST them!! [face_devil] [face_skull]
     
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