Author: CaraJinn Era: JA era and even before Genre: Humor/Adventure Characters: Obi-Wan Kenobi, Garen Muln Summary: A story telling hour in the creche leads two little rascals out on an adventure in the temple, searching for buried treasures. Author's notes: Written as a part of a Halloween challenge ..... The Treasure "I don't believe it! Not a single word of it. It's not possible." Master Ali-Alann had just finished the weekly storytelling hour and the crechelings were aiming for the 'fresher in a more or less orderly manner before bedtime. This evening's story had been about pirates sailing the seas and burying treasures in ancient days and Garen Muln wouldn't have anything of it. "Why not?" his friend Obi-Wan Kenobi asked. It wasn't like he was inclined to believe all Ali-Alann's stories but this one seemed vaguely plausible. After all he had heard whispers among the padawans about pirates attacking spaceships so why not on water? "Duh! Seas! Water" Garen explained triumphantly. "Everyone knows that water is recycled and pirates cannot sail inside the tubes where the water runs." A couple of deep wrinkles appeared on Obi-Wan's little brow. "The water has to come from somewhere," he explained patiently. "So maybe it wasn't in tubes back then." This time it was Garen's turn to frown. "You mean, like…the river in "The Room of Thousand Fountains". "Yeah, something like that. Remember when we went to the archives?" Obi-Wan asked. Garen nodded. It had been quite embarrassing when Madame Nu had discovered them and they had to be picked up by Master Ali-Alann, but at least she had shown them some interesting holos first - which included water running freely. Somehow it seemed his initial logics was failing - again. "If water can flow in rivers like the one we have here, then it could also be collected in a pond - just like the one where the larger initiates go swimming," Obi-Wan continued. "Oh, I sooo look forward to doing the same." "It's not allowed, and you know it," Obi-Wan interjected properly. "Well, going to the archives wasn't either…" "But then again, if it was a really big pond, then maybe something could sail on it. Something like a wooden plate or….something." Obi-Wan's voice trailed off. Imagining something that could float on water and be large enough to carry people at the same time was almost impossible to do. And furthermore the pirates probably would be grown ups so the float had to be big. Garen nodded reluctantly. Obi had a point. They had both seen leaves floating in the river so larger things could possibly do that too. He made one last attempt on holding his ground: "But there's no way a pond could be that big." "Not now, but if we collected all the water on Coruscant in one place…?" Obi-Wan was still in deep thoughts. "…then it has to be deep down," Garen continued his sentence. Their musings were disrupted by Master's determined voice. "Now the two of you, scurry off and brush your teeth. It's bedtime now." "Yes, Master," they confirmed in unison and set their course towards the 'fresher. The following day plans had been made and they were ready to make a "go live" for it as soon as they got a chance. The plan was easy enough. The next time they got a possibility to sneak away from the rest of their crechemates they would find the stairs going down to the lower levels and then continue to the bottom of the temple. If there ever had been water on the planet (Garen still doubted that part a bit) they might even find the treasure that Master had said the pirates buried. "We cannot keep it for ourselves," Obi-Wan lectured, "it's not the jedi way. We must give it to Master Yoda when we find it." Garen looked slightly disappointed for a moment but then he agreed. Really, keeping treasures for themselves had to be against the code. But first they had to find it. Their chance to sneak away came a couple of days later when the group were on their way up to one of the outer gardens to play hide and seek. The turbolift filled up and Obi-Wan and Garen were the last ones to enter just to realise that there wasn't space enough for them. "We'll take the next one," they informed. "We know where to go." Which, from a certain point of view, was true. "Down?" Obi-Wan asked. "Down," Garen confirmed and pressed the button. Neither of the boys had been to the lower levels of the Temple before and when the turbolift halted and they exited they almost turned around and fled up to the gardens right away. Where the upper levels were well lit and clean, the level they arrived at was definitely darker and a tang of dust tickled their nostrils. Obi-Wan sneezed. "Shhhh!" Garen admonished. "If you reveal us now our little trick would be useless." To their left side an eery glow came from behind a heavy metal door. A deep buzzing sound could be heard from within. But the ground beneath their feet were still tiles so they were definitely not on ground level yet. "Not through that door?" Garen whispered. Obi-Wan shook his head: "No, I don't think so. It surely isn't old enough. There has to be another way." Quietly they tiptoed out of the turbolift. Whatever was behind that door they didn't want it to see them. There had to be another way. They found it in an old brick wall that seemed to be built in a slight curve for some reason. The door was old and grey and heavy and made from something that truly resembled wood. Obi-Wan touched it almost reverently. "It's old." "Maybe the pirates built it? Do you think they live there still?" Garen actually sounded a bit nervous. "Nah, we're in the Temple. They were kinda evil so they couldn't live here," Obi-Wan reassured him. With united forces, and a little calling on the Force itself they managed to open the door. Whatever was in there was completely dark and the boys pulled a glow rod from their pockets before they tread through the heavy door. Before them they saw an old staircase going down into the darkness. "I have a bad feeling about this," Obi-Wan muttered. "Maybe we should go back?" "No, we have come this far so let us continue. There's probably nothing but dust and cobwebs down there." "And a treasure," Garen grinned. The stair was long and old and some of the steps were creaking beneath their feet. Obi-Wan could hear Garen's slightly shaky breath right behind him. It seemed like they were descending forever. And then the stairs ended and they set their feet on solid ground. Real, solid ground. Not man made tiles, but rock as hard and firm as the one they could see in The Garden of Thousand Fountains. "We were right," Garen exclaimed. "We're on the planet's surface." "Yeah…" A new door was in front of them. This one seemed even older than the one on top of the staircase. "Shall we open it? We don't know what's on the other side?" Garen's voice was even shakier now. "We didn't know before going through the last door either," Obi-Wan reminded him. "No. But what if there are siths down here?" "Siths? What's that?" Obi-Wan asked curiously. "They are evil and dark and I heard a padawan coming from a history lesson mentioning them," Garen stuttered. "If they are evil, they're not in the Temple either," Obi-Wan assured him again, adding a not so reassuring "I hope". And with that they opened the door. A corridor made by stone was opening in front of them, the wall covered with beautiful tiles. "Oh, no," Obi-Wan sighed. "More man made stuff…." Garen felt a bit more encouraged by the signs of civilisation so now he took the lead up the corridor and soon the boys entered a large open space. They lifted their glow rods and looked around. The walls were covered with tiles in beautiful colours and it seemed like a landscape opened before them. "It's beautiful," Obi-Wan sighed. Garen had his attention elsewhere, though. "Can you hear it? Over there? It's dripping. There may actually be water in here." Both boys turned towards the direction where the soft dripping sound could be heard and saw a small basin made of tiles having a clear blue colour. The boys headed eagerly for the basin. "It is water!" they exclaimed in unison. Obi-Wan looked at the dark shiny surface. The yellow light from their glow rods were reflected in the water and he felt drawn towards it. The dark surface pulled him in. Darkness. Deeper than anything he'd seen before. Darker than the night, darker than anything he'd could imagine and then he could see fire, but this time there weren't rivers of fire. The fire was coming from the skies. He could hear thunder and screams from a thousand dying voices at once and the walls around him began to shiver and crumble as if a quake had struck. And Obi-Wan screamed. A punch in his arm made him snap out of it, whatever it was and he could feel Garen drag him away from the pool. "Obi, Obi…stop it. Whatever it is it isn't for real. We're here together and there are no pirates." Obi-Wan found himself laying on the tiled floor still shaking after the vision or bad dream or….whatever it was he had seen. Carefully he sat up, panting slightly after the screaming. "Thanks Garen," he said earnestly, "whatever I saw….I don't want to see it again. Ever. It was scary." "What was….?" Garen began to ask and then he stopped abruptly. Tap. Tap…Tap. Tap Something was moving in the shadows, and it was coming closer. Soon it would be out of the tunnel and it would see them. They already could see light coming from the corridor they had emerged from a few minutes earlier. "Let's hide behind the basin," Obi-Wan decided. "That's our best chance." They curled up the best they could and tried to make themselves invisible, in real life and in the force, closing their eyes and hoping fervently that it would disappear. Whatever it happened to be. Tap. Tap. Tap. Tap…. The sound was coming closer now and Obi-Wan dared to look up between half shut eyelids. A huge weird looking shadow was cast on the wall and he almost screamed again. Almost. "Hiding from old Master Yoda you are," a familiar voice chuckled. "when playing hide and seek with your crechemates you should." "M-m-master Yoda?" Both boys opened their eyes in shock and truly, the old green Master stood in front of the basin waiting patiently for them to rise and step forward. The light from his glow rod cast eerie shadows over his wrinkled face. "Hide down here, you should not. In the garden you should play, no?" "Yes, Master…" "Then why," the old Master continued, "find you here I do?" "We were looking for a treasure," Obi-Wan admitted, "but we wanted to give it to you. We were not going to keep it." "A treasure, you say? Many treasures this Temple hold, but none of them down here." The boys crumbled a bit under the old Grandmaster's stern but not unfriendly glance and Garen was the first one to break. "Master Ali-Alann told us about pirates in the old days and that they sailed the seas and buried their treasures and when we understood that there might have been water here it could just as well have been the sea and the pirates might have buried a treasure here….and then we wanted to find it. And there is water here but not enough for pirates to sail and then Obi-Wan looked into the water and had a vision or something and then you came, Master," Garen finished meekly. "A vision, you say?" Obi-Wan nodded. "I think so. It was dark and noisy and there was thunder and I saw fire from the skies and everything was shaking and then Garen punched my arm and rescued me and I woke up," he explained without drawing his breath once. "Pulled you out of the vision, Garen did? Hmmmm?" "Yes, Master," Obi-Wan whispered. "Hmmmm. Then right you were. No pirates there were, but a treasure you found." Both boys looked quizzically at the old Master. "A treasure? But we found nothing." "Nothing, you say? A big treasure you found today. Yes, a big treasure. Garen 'saved' you from the vision and the biggest treasure true friendship is. Now old Yoda will follow you to your quarters. Enough hide and seek there has been for one day." And with that the old Master turned around and began his way back with the two explorers in tow.