Qui-Gon sat nervously on a chair inside the Healers waiting area. He could not find his calm center anymore than he could explain what had happened to Obi-Wan Kenobi on the landing platform a few hours ago. The events continued to replay in his mind like a broken holoprojector; but, it did little to help him solve the mystery.
"Qui-Gon," Mace began, "Where did you say you found the rock?"
"I found it on my home planet when I was about Obi-Wan's age. I don't understand what happened to him Mace. I've handled the stone many times. Both Tahl and Master Dooku have touched it too. Nothing like this has ever happened before." Qui-Gon rubbed his hands over his face as a frustrated sigh escaped his lips.
"What's unique about it?" "I know you well enough to know you wouldn't give Obi-Wan an ordinary rock."
"It's a Force sensitive stone," Qui-Gon replied solemnly.
"Why did the rock hurt Obi-Wan when it didn't hurt anyone else," Garen asked from across the room.
"Maybe this happened so he would miss the transport," Bant suggested from her seat beside Garen.
"I was thinking the same thing," Tahl agreed as she sat next to Qui-Gon.
Although he was reluctant to admit it to Mace or anyone else in the room, the same thought had crossed Qui-Gon's mind several times. Before he could dwell further on the possible involvement of the Force, the waiting room door slid open and Healer Grien entered the room. He looked tired and perplexed.
"How is he?" Qui-Gon asked, rising to his feet immediately as the Healer entered
"As far as we can tell he's fine. He's sleeping right now, although he did regain consciousness long enough to complain of a headache. We're waiting for the results of some more scans of his head; we won't know if there are any other problems until then.
"Can I see him?" Qui-Gon questioned, taking a step closer to the Twi'lek and the doorway.
"Yes, I thought that you might, he's still asleep, but he should wake soon," Healer Grien remarked.
Qui-Gon quickly left the room, and hurried toward the area where he could sense Obi-Wan's presence. Something wasn't quite right. He just couldn't quite place what was different
Upon entering the room, he noticed that the boy was awake and staring at the ceiling. He looked so much younger than he really was. Qui-Gon wanted to keep the boy at his side to protect him, but Obi-Wan didn't look at him as he entered the room. Qui-Gon nearly stopped his approach when he noticed the tears that streamed down the lad's pale cheeks. "Obi-Wan," he said.
Finally, the teen looked up at him. "Are you all right? Do you need me to get Healer Grien," the Master asked. Apprehension gripped his shoulders with an ironclad hold, but his face was a mask of perfect tranquility.
Obi-Wan nodded his head slightly, "I'm fine; they gave me something for the headache. It's better already."
Even the way the youngster spoke somehow seemed different, like his Force presence. Qui-Gon grabbed a chair from across the room and dragged it next to the boy's sleep couch and sat down. "I'm sorry Obi-Wan; I didn't know that the stone would hurt you. I would never have given it to you if I had known…"
Obi-Wan quickly turned to look at Qui-Gon. "It didn't hurt me. Other than the headache, it helped me; you helped me Master Qui-Gon."
Master, Obi-Wan had not called him Master since he first found him on Luzick. "I'm afraid I don't understand, the stone took over your body momentarily. I could see the pain in your eyes, but I couldn't help you. I couldn't help you until after the stone had released you."
"You did help me Master Jinn; you found and brought me back to the Temple. If you hadn't done that I would still be stealing scraps of food left by the diners on Luzick; I would still be Ben. And Ben didn't know Master Oxane, he was a great Master. Master Oxane died trying to save me from the mind wipe; it's my fault that he died, Master Jinn. If I hadn't gotten caught he would still be alive."
"It wasn't your fault; you had no way of knowing…" Qui-Gon stopped mid sentence and looked at the boy with wide eyes. "You remember your Master?" He felt a sense of hope that he had not felt in a long time.
Obi-Wan nodded, "I remember everything. I remember sneaking away from the crèche with Bant, Garen, and Reeft to swim in The Room of a Thousand Fountains. I remember the day Master Oxane took me as his Padawan after I dueled with Bruck Chun. He told me that I fought Bruck in anger; I thought the Council would send me to Agri-Corps because of it, but he asked me to be his Padawan. He said that he would help me overcome it."
Qui-Gon reeled with shock. Obi-Wan had regained his memory
and he didn't know what to say to him. He didn't know how he could help him once he realized his Master was gone.
"Master Qui-Gon," Healer Grien interrupted them. "I must speak with you. I have the results of the scans." Qui-Gon could sense the presence of Mace and Yoda outside; obviously, they too were waiting to hear the results.
"I want to know," Obi-Wan spoke quickly wiping the tears from his pale cheeks.
Healer Grien glanced at Qui-Gon, who nodded his approval. The Healer then asked Mace and Yoda to enter the room and close the door behind them. Once the two Masters were inside, he began. "The results are quite unusual; there is much more brain activity than when we scanned him the first time he was brought back to the Temple. I'm not sure how the incident caused the increased activity, but I will run more scans and test to find out, I assure you."
Qui-Gon glanced down at Obi-Wan who smiled at the bewilderment covering the Twi'lek's face. "Healer Grien, I don't think running any more scans or tests on the boy will be necessary."
"Why? We must find out what…"
"He means we already know," Obi-Wan butted in trying to hide another smile. "And I for one am not going to stay here and let you use me as an experiment. It's bad enough that I've had to come here almost every month since I was a toddler. Do you remember when I had the Rishari flu? You tried a new medicine on me that caused me to break out in a rash. I looked like a spotted Cokiean bird. My friends wanted to play connect the dots. So I think I'll pass."
"That was an isolated incident, you were not the first to be given the medication; you were simply the only one to…" Healer Grien's eyes grew wide as he realized what Obi-Wan had just said.
"You remember?" Mace asked.
"Yes, I remember everything," Obi-Wan told them.
"Good news this is," Yoda commented stepping forward closer to the healer.
"That would certainly explain the changes in the scans, but it still doesn't explain why his memory became active again," Grien persisted.
"Come you will, Grien," Yoda said walking toward the doorway with a gnarled hand guiding the Twi'lek toward the exit. "Discuss with you the will of the Force I will, while inform the others, Mace will of Obi-Wan's prognosis."
The healer nodded and glanced back at Obi-Wan one last time before following the old Master out of the recovery room. Mace smiled and turned to Obi-Wan, "It is good to have you back Obi-Wan." With a nod toward Qui-Gon, Mace left them alone in the room again.
"Thank you," Obi-Wan smiled slightly but Mace had already left the room.
Once Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon were alone again, the youth looked at the older man and asked, "I'll still have to go to Agri-Corps won't I? Be…because my Master is dead."
Reaching out his hand to wipe away a stray tear that still lingered on the boy's cheek, Qui-Gon said, "No, I know I can't replace your Master, but my offer to take you as my Padawan still stands. I would be honored to train you."
Wide eyes looked at him in surprise. "But you left the Order. I once had a dream that you would become my Master, but Master Yoda told me that he didn't think you would return to the Jedi in time to train me. He said you had too many inner demons to fight. I can't allow you to take me just because you think the river stone hurt me."
"Obi-Wan, I know now that the stone saved you. It brought you back to me after I thought I was losing you. I've gotten to know you and Cyjeon, and I believe that you will make a great Jedi Knight one day. I have also come to care about you very much. I am asking you to be my Padawan, because I want you to be my Padawan."
Obi-Wan smiled up at the longhaired man , "I would be honored to be your Padawan, Master."
The End :)