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Gungan to the left


Allowances (PG)


By : Lady Moonbeam

Archived on: Monday, June 16, 2003

Summary:
Even a Jedi's love for his apprentice can be restricted by the Council's rules and regulations. Qui-Gon reflects on what he has been given, and what he has refused.

It is very hard for a Jedi to remain wholly innocent. It's hard for me to even define what the word means. Certainly, I'm sure, it doesn't mean me, or anything in the carefully catalogued archives of my soul. I've so often, in these last few years, defined the word by looking to Obi-Wan, who was always a child, who had never given up on the moral game-board, with everything so crisply black and white. He wouldn't like it if he knew I thought of it that way-that, in the end, all that mattered was what side you chose and how well you could play the game. Obi-Wan believes, as he should, that there is something more-he believes that an individual can make a difference. He named every piece of every game I bought him, to give them an identity, and make them real and equal to each other.

I haven't been innocent for most of my adult years, and if there once was a speck of innocence inside of me, it has long since been eroded away into nothingness. Xanatos's fall, Tahl's death… but he made me hold on and he kept me standing when I would have fallen, too. If I'm lucky, the dust of that innocence I once had managed to fall to Obi-Wan, who needs something between him and the outside world. He had the brightest eyes of any child that I've ever seen, and whatever lanterns burned inside of them didn't dim as he went through his apprenticeship. The glow didn't even falter when all I could offer him was a pat on the shoulder and a callused hand that was clumsy as he shook it.

That glow never faltered until today, when I put my hands on Anakin's shoulders, and chained that boy into my footsteps. I didn't have to turn around to see his eyes dim, all I had to do was hear his voice, absent of any dry humor that it had contained before, filled instead with a shaking rage that I could feel without the bond; a rage that I could hear even through his voice.

"I am ready to face the Trials."

He is cooler with me now, as he tries to walk with a Knight's crisp, staccato stride, trying to sever his allegiance to me before I sever his braid. Before, he had been angry, and that had been something; there had been some spirit to tether him to his body, but now, he is far from me, and he offers only facts, things I could have seen for myself. I will miss his insight on the missions, and I suspect that I will have a hard time reigning in young Anakin, who burns all over but refuses to glow. Quite the fireball, my new "pathetic lifeform." Obi-Wan eyes him with noticeable distrust, fighting back his natural inclinations to be friendly, because he is jealous of this young one. He sees that I show far more affection to a sunburned child of the sand than I ever have to him.

Poor child-but not my child. That is the most important distinction that any Master can make. The Council remains disdainful of connections, and to consider an apprentice (nothing more than an employee, really) to be your child is beyond their collective belief. I tried to tell them once that I would like to have maybe a week with my Padawan in the Temple, to give him some time to recover from our latest stressing missions.

What hurt was that they thought I was joking. And when they found out that I was not actually joking, they were outraged.

They told me:

"Compassion is fine, but do not value that one life above the others you could save. Why in the galaxies, when it comes to it, would you choose to lose everything else for this one single person?"

I do it because I love him, and I told them that, standing in that chilly, serene tower with everything behind me and beneath me.

They reminded me with that cold condescension that a Jedi shall not know love, and then they watched me from that tower, judgmental and waiting for me to make a mistake. They waited for me to become so devoted and so attentive to him that I let everything else fall.

Because they remember Xanatos.

I tried to pretend like I'd been wrong, for a while, but there's only so long that you can pretend that you don't love this child that's been so neatly inserted into your life. I spent so many nights putting my pillow up to my ears so that I wouldn't hear Obi-Wan crying in a nightmare, but I finally got up and went in to his room, and told him that it was fine, that I was his Master, that he was going to be safe with me forever.

And it was a mistake. Then, Obi-Wan knew that I cared, and he waited for further signs-he waited for a hug, he waited for more than a passing word of praise. He waited, and he wilted in waiting, because I couldn't give him anything that he wanted, so he assumed, as the Council would not, that I had, indeed, changed my mind. After that, the wilting was done. He grew into a man that I could be proud of, and a Jedi that I could trust. Above all else, he was a Jedi, so of course he could understand why I never showed him too much affection. That thought helped me get through the harder times, even if it is only partially true.

Obi-Wan could make me no prouder of him than I have been in the last few days. He watches me carefully as I talk to Anakin, and I think that he is beginning to see everything but the other half of my motives for giving him away.

One half is Anakin's unrelieved, concentrated power; the boy walks in a dream of destiny, and he never falls from where the fates have placed him. I know that he could be great: greater than maybe anyone else in the galaxy.

But that isn't my only reason. The other half is that Obi-Wan needs his Knighthood. He needs to walk without having to stay to my left, and fight without having to guard my back. He needs to go-he needs to be free, he needs to stop waiting for signs that will never come.

The Council allows more freedom for the Knights. Obi-Wan could have friends, certainly, and he can fall in love. He can fall in love if he understands that it must be kept quiet, and if he knows that he cannot ever try to validate that relationship. He could be happy with whomever he chose… as long as they never assume that they're going to live happily ever after.

And once he is a Knight, I will be free, too.

If he isn't my Padawan, then I'm not his Master, and there is no official attachment. I can tell him that I always wanted to be his father, because I'll never get a chance to give up everything for him again. I can be a father when he no longer needs one in his life, and that is cold comfort.

I wonder why I am never content. After all, I'm allowed to be his comforter and his teacher. But the trouble is, I'm only allowed to be his father when he can no longer be my son. That thought haunts me in the worst possible times-in the midst of battle, sometimes, when I'm afraid he might die without making it to his Knighthood, and without making it to those realizations and that conversation I must have with him.

I hope to have a chance to tell him, when we come back to Naboo. I want to clap him on the shoulder, and pull him into a tight hug. I want to tell him everything, but for now, he just obeys me mutely, silent at my side, and holding back questions that he wants to ask, as I deny him answers that he needs to know. It's okay. I know what I'm going to do. I know that I'll tell him everything-but some rules cannot be broken. Some don't even bend. They're made harder than stone or the look in Obi-Wan's eyes.

I will tell him everything that is allowed.




Original cover by FernWithy. HTML formatting copyright 2003 TheForce.Net LLC.


Fan Fiction Rating

Current Rating is 9.63 in 68 total ratings.

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Reader Comments

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Author: ThePodSquad
Date posted: 6/16/2003 9:02:55 PM
ThePodSquad's Comments:

*sniff* That was wonderful Moony, first time I've had the pleasure of reading it. But so sweet and sad...just wonderful!

Author: Herman Snerd  (signed)
Date posted: 6/16/2003 9:08:44 PM
Herman Snerd's Comments:

There are times when being a part of the archive is so rewarding because I'm exposed to fics I might not have otherwise read. This is one of those times. I'm not the most avid reader of prequel era stories, but I'm so glad I happened across this one. Wonderful story.

Author: Bimo  (signed)
Date posted: 6/16/2003 9:20:38 PM
Bimo's Comments:

Poignant and beautiful. Cleary one of the most touching and accurate portrayals of the relationship between Qui-Gon and Obi that I've ever come across. If I had to name my favourite passages, I would probably end up quoting the entire story.

Lady Moonbeam, you cannot believe how glad I am to see this one archived :-)

Author: bobill  (signed)
Date posted: 6/17/2003 7:47:58 AM
bobill's Comments:

Wow, what mush! It's so sad seeing the council act so heartless! And Yoda, I would have thought he have SOME compassion! Now I see why Anakin broke away...

Author: Lady Moonbeam
Date posted: 6/17/2003 7:56:00 AM
Lady Moonbeam's Comments:

Let me just say that this story would never be here without help, so great thanks go to my two betas, obaona (who will never let me rest in peace without submitting) and Darth Jurious (who was a great help with tenses and clarity). Also, thanks go to Fern Withy, who made the excellent cover art. I'm thrilled to have made it in to the Archive.

I'm really glad to see that you're enjoying the story. It makes all the polishing worthwhile.

Author: LuvEwan
Date posted: 6/17/2003 11:23:45 PM
LuvEwan's Comments:

Beautiful story. I was especially moved by this line:
"He needs to walk without having to stay to my left, and fight without having to guard my back. He needs to go-he needs to be free, he needs to stop waiting for signs that will never come."

What a perfect description of Obi-Wan's plight, and Qui-Gon's internal conflict.

Wonderful, honest language. Great job! :)

Author: Destiny  (signed)
Date posted: 6/18/2003 12:18:14 PM
Destiny's Comments:

I enjoyed this story, Lady Moonbeam. Qui-Gon Jinn is one of my favorite Jedi - I always enjoy his personality and his defiant ways.

Your characterization of him - and of the guileless Obi-Wan - was beautiful.

I especially enjoyed these lines:

"It is very hard for a Jedi to remain wholly innocent. It's hard for me to even define what the word means. Certainly, I'm sure, it doesn't mean me, or anything in the carefully catalogued archives of my soul."

I never have been able to picture Qui-Gon Jinn as being completely 'whole' and 'pure'. :p

Thanks for an enjoyable read! :)

Author: JediPug1  (signed)
Date posted: 6/18/2003 7:50:33 PM
JediPug1's Comments:

Terrific depiction of Qui-Gon and of his relationship to Obi-Wan. Well done!

Author: jada_marnew  (signed)
Date posted: 6/18/2003 9:29:55 PM
jada_marnew's Comments:

Very well written, very insightful into the subtext of QuiGon and the Jedi Council.

Author: DarthyVader
Date posted: 6/19/2003 2:02:50 PM
DarthyVader's Comments:

that was so sad. how obi-wan was put down, how qui-gon can't tell him the things that are most important... down to the last sentence, i loved it!

Author: Master Rush
Date posted: 6/21/2003 7:47:52 PM
Master Rush's Comments:

Very good, It shows the Masters true fellings for the Apprentices.

Author: Valiowk  (signed)
Date posted: 6/25/2003 4:46:08 AM
Valiowk's Comments:

That was a beautiful story that accurately portrayed the relationship between Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan. By describing the limits allowed to their bond, you showed clearly the soft-hearted side of Qui-Gon that has to face up to the reality of being a Jedi. It said a lot about human relationships, and how they develop in ways that one cannot control; how there will never be any regrets to having relationships that have brought one more joy than anybody could imagine.

Thank you for a wonderful tale.

Author: obaona  (signed)
Date posted: 6/27/2003 4:32:36 AM
obaona's Comments:

I've been sadly remiss in giving this the proper comment it deserves (and that I promised).

Some stories make you cry - but this isn't one of those. It's not so simply heart-wrenching as it is moving, and I mean like an earthquake kind of moving! The idea of this story remained with me far after I read the fic. The beauty of the wording and the grace with which Qui-Gon's emotions are written stuck with me, making its way into a permenant corner of my brain. It might sound weird, but it's true - I will never think of the Jedi, Qui-Gon, or Obi-Wan in the same way again. I know I haven't since I first read this all those months ago, when I offered to beta it.

In a sense, you have even changed my perspective on the real world, simply by taking the idea of this fic - loving someone, and being unable to show it because of the rules - makes me wonder if some of us make these rules for ourselves, as unbreakable as those Qui-Gon sought to bend. I apologize for getting philosphical (or even silly), but the complexity - and truth - of the idea behind this fic make it practically impossible for me to do otherwise.

And of course, I can't forget to add how wonderfully Lady_Moonbeam wrote out this idea, made me feel it, and made me remember it. Every word and every sentence contributes to the whole, making something as satisfying as a novel, but not nearly as long . . . because it doesn't need to be with the skill in which the author wrote.

I commend the author for this wonderful piece of art. :)

Author: Blazer  (signed)
Date posted: 7/3/2003 2:04:46 AM
Blazer's Comments:

Wow, Moon... wow.

Since obaona pretty much covered everything I wanted to say (*laugh*), the only thing I should say that this piece is one of the most beautifully crafted and stunning works I have read in my life. Every line was lyrical and flowed along perfectly. I could find no fault with it whatsoever, and the insightfullness of it all just amazed me and made me re-examine everything I had every read on Star Wars, wondering if the authors of the books made the bond between Master and Apprentice as you portrayed it here.

Take a bow, you deserve it.

-KrystalBlaze

Author: Darth Foutzious  (signed)
Date posted: 7/8/2003 11:04:42 PM
Darth Foutzious's Comments:

Sad, but poetic and poised. Truthful in it's beauty, and well written. Keep up the good work!

Author: AshJediKnight
Date posted: 1/28/2004 6:18:37 PM
AshJediKnight's Comments:

Wow! I never thought of Qui-gon's reservement toward Obi-wan that way. It puts it all in perfect words!I've read several of your works and its all good! Keep writing!

Author: Layren
Date posted: 4/21/2004 8:28:06 AM
Layren's Comments:

Ooooh very beautiful sad short fic about Qui-Gon and how it hurts him not to be able to love. Brilliantly done! It's so nice to see stories that go inside Qui-Gon's head and do a good job.

Author: Layren
Date posted: 4/21/2004 8:28:10 AM
Layren's Comments:

Ooooh very beautiful sad short fic about Qui-Gon and how it hurts him not to be able to love. Brilliantly done! It's so nice to see stories that go inside Qui-Gon's head and do a good job.

Author: Ani-maniac
Date posted: 11/12/2004 12:21:51 PM
Ani-maniac's Comments:

It was a good story. It is obvious that you have the Jedi Apprentice series, but I have to say I disagree with your veiw of Obi-wan and Qui-Gon's relationship. To me they may not hug, but they know very clearly how much they care for eachother. Obi-wan was simply hurt by the fact that Qui-Gon agreed to take Anakin on as a Padawan so quickly. Especially since Obi-wan had to save Qui-Gon's life to finally get him to agree to take him as an apprentice. Yoda himself told Qui-Gon that if he would not choose an apprentice, then perhaps fate would choose one for him. It did. I also wanted to add that it might have been interesting to continue the story about innocense up until Qui-Gon's death, with Obi-wan's ultimate loss of innocense being Qui-Gon's death. But, I did want to compliment you on a good story, from an interesting angle. Keep writing!

Author: Gabri_Jade  (signed)
Date posted: 3/29/2005 11:56:16 PM
Gabri_Jade's Comments:

Beautiful, Moon. As always, your writing is wonderfully eloquent. :) I could really see this story happening in Qui-Gon's mind, and it adds even more sadness to his death, that all of this remained unspoken. I really enjoyed reading this. :)

Author: Renka
Date posted: 11/12/2005 9:58:20 PM
Renka's Comments:

Really good fic. It almost made me cry because I know that Qui-Gon is never going to get to tell Obi-Wan any of those things. *sniffle* I really enjoyed it.

Author: Veloz  (signed)
Date posted: 1/1/2006 7:33:46 PM
Veloz's Comments:

*sniff sniff* ok this was so sad!

I loved the description when Qui Gon says he will take Anakin as his padawan, how Obi Wan's bright eyes dimmed .. this was really touching!

*Applause*


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Archived: Monday, June 16, 2003







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